Home > Virtual Museum >

SOLD - Meggendorfer - The Great Punch Theater - 1897 Large Punch & Judy movable book

Great Punch Theater

Alternative Views:

The Great Punch Theater

The Great Punch Theatre: An Amusing Picture Book of Six Plays Acted by Mr. Punch.

Printed in Germany. London, H. Grevel & Co., n.d. [1897].

Illustrators: Paul Wagner/ Lothar Meggendorfer

12 1/2 X 9 1/2 "

Description: 12 pages. Six original plays written in rhyme illustrated on six movable pages.

The movables work with coils.

The cover image is from Paul Wagner, who has redrawn the original panels designed by C. Häberlin of the original version from 1864. From Lothar Meggendorfer come the b / w illustrations.

Listed on page of 296 The Lothar Meggendorfer bibliograohy, A. Werkverzeichnis (2012).

This book is the English edition of:

MEGGENDORFER, Lothar. Grosses Puppentheater.

Esslingen: J.F. Schreiber, [1890]. with 6 color-lithographed plates by P. Wagner
and 9 illustrations by Meggendorfer.

The English and German editions have the exact same images and movables.

Condition: The book is in excellent condition. All parts are complete and original and all movables are fully functioning. The wire coils are fine and show no staining on opposite pages. The covers are in near fine condition, clean with very little wear. The front cover is brightly colored and the original red cloth spine is fine. All pages are in good condition with only faint age yellowing. The book is tight held by original string, The pages have been reattached. The theatre scenes are bright colors and fully functioning. A couple minor tears were professionally and invisibly repaired.

Description of book:

The book begins with a Playbill followed by Punch's Address to the Audience with "splitting your sides with laughter" promises. The rollicking comical old rascal with a wicked grin and beaky nose whose antics have been known and laughed at around the world is now 350 years old. The enduring popularity of the witty and lively Punch in many forms has made him the most famous puppet character of all time.

Let's open the book and as Punch says, "...the play is now about to begin."

Each of the six stories is presented in a theatre stage setting with delighted audiences below. Each scene has a different audience. It is interesting to note the various activities and attitudes of the audiences as well as the movable actions.

1. Punch and the Sportsman: Punch disguised as a hare makes fun of the hunter. With a pull down the hunter leans forward. lifts and points his gun at the hare who merely wiggles his ear One ear and the barrel of the gun had a small tear re-glued and there is a small corner tear on bottom of the pull..

2. Punch as Crocodile, and Little Tomkins: Punch (who often disguises as other characters) also mocks fun at Tomkins who is fully prepared for big fishing. Punch wins the show as Tompkins begins to run away. A gentle downward pull toward the left gets Tomkins dashing away as the crocodile snaps at his coat. The only repair is a tiny re-gluing of the crocodile's mouth grabbing the jacket. Light pencil marks indicate the necessary directional of the pull.

3. Punch as a Robber Chief: Punch is usually getting away or trying to escape the police. Here a stick-wielding Punch pulls a robbery while pretending to be a robber chief with a gun and knife tucked at his side in a bright red belt. The rascal swings at his victim who ducks to avoid the blow. Yes, Punch gets his money. A small tear in the stage lower curtain and a tear on the script bottom has been re-glued.

4. The Arrest of Punch: Here a clown-like Punch attempts to get away from Heaviboots, a policeman. As the policeman attempts to hit him with his stick Punch ducks down into a box. A pull of the tab swings the policeman and his stick as Punch quickly jumps inside a box. But the policeman gets his prisoner this time in the story.

5. Mrs. Punch's Petition: A very desperate Judy (Mrs Punch) approaches a judge petitioning the release of her husband. She bows and bends as a frowning judge jerks his head up and down. However, not shown in the picture but told in the story, a bottle of wine works and she obtains the promise of his freedom.

6. Will Catchem, and Punch as Rathernot: Here Punch appears in his most typical clown costume, a large red nose and a humped back. He carries a large bat and bends forward to beat the "A creature black, with horny pate" as Catchem leaps back and forth to miss the blows.

(Notice the play on word names - Heaviboots, Catchem and Rathernot)

Punch and Judy have always been very popular and mechanical/movable books

much enjoyed by children and, therefore, delightfully played with. The results have been few survived in good condiion. This is a nice exception and deserving applause . It would be a welcome addition to any collection.


Product Code: A-30
Currently Unavailable