Home > BOOKS FOR SALE > All Books >

Spectacle Acrobate movable card - 1834 Souvenier from the famous Madame Saqui French Circus

Circus Memorabilia and nineteenth century movable ephemera Madame Saqui
1834 Circus Memorabilia and nineteenth century movable ephemera Madame Saqui

Alternative Views:

Spectacle Acrobate movable card

The gift inscription on this card is dated 1834

This tiny card with a tab operated movable tightrope walker is in fine condition. It is the only movable souvenir we have ever seen likely from Madame Saquis famous early 1800’s French theater known as the “Spectacle Acrobate de Madame Saqui”.

Excellent all original working condition – see photos Size closed: 3.75" X 2.5"

It was apparently created as a keepsake for the famous rope dancers of Madame Saqui's French theater, located at 52 Boulevard du Temple, 75011 Paris, France, which was open from 1825-1840. Her family and troupe performed rope dance, pantomimes and harlequinades in the Italian genre.

An old ad for the show housed now at the Paris Museum - Les Musées De La Ville De Paris, describes the theater as having boxes and music, both depicted in this card.: The show consisted of Exercises on the stretched rope, by the Agility Artists of the troupe. Along with the tightrope show they had songs and comedy.

Identifying this card:
1830’s Google book references using a “Spectacle Acrobate” search all pull up Madame Saquis French theater. Décor and scenery match descriptions of the theater. The cards French gift inscription is dated 1834.

There is a book available on Amazon entitled Madame Saqui: Revolutionary Rope Dancer
(March 24, 2020 By Lisa Robinson, Illustrated by Rebecca Green. Published by Random House Children’s Books)
According to the book “A nouvelle chérie de Paris, Madame Saqui cemented her place in circus history, winning the adoration of the French people and royalty alike, including Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte.”

This incredible movable piece of French Circus ephemera will appeal to collectors of both Circus Memorabilia and nineteenth century movable ephemera as well.

Collector’s Corner – History of the “Spectacle Acrobate de Madame Saqui”

On 12 December 1816, Madame Saqui - (born Marguerite-Antoinette Lalanne on February 26), daughter of the famous acrobat Jean Baptiste Lalanne, bought the Café d'Apollon, site of the old Théâtre des Associés. Her new theater was known as the “Spectacle Acrobate de Madame Saqui”, but it closed in 1832 and was replaced with Dorsay's Théâtre du Temple. Besides herself, her dancers were named, Rovel, Williams, Charigni, and Boigni.
Madame Saqui was quite famous in her day, in fact Napolean invited her to entertain his soldiers in their camps, and to add variety to his military partys. She is also and is mentioned in the novel Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray.

In 1907, the French journalist Paul Ginisty wrote her biography: Mémoires d'un danseuse de corde : Mme Saqui (1786-1866).



De Gaulle, New history of Paris and its surroundings, Ed PM Pourrat frères, 1839-1841, Paris.

Paul Ginisty, Mémoires d’une danseuse de corde: Mme Saqui (1786–1866) (Paris: Charpentier and Fasquelle, 1907), chaps. 6, 7, 8 .

Nicole WILD, Dictionnaire des théâtres parisiens (1807-1914)


Product Code: E-2