Cheap Toys for All in Nineteenth-Century Europe


  • Elisa Marazzi Università degli studi di Milano

Parole chiave:

Cheap print; illustrated broadsides; penny prints; paper toys


In this article I will attempt to outline this process as it unfolded in some areas of what we can define Western Europe, in particular France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Spain. In order to do so I will draw a brief sketch of cheap print for children focusing on a subgenre: illustrated broadsides. I will then describe how printers of cheap print, capitalising on the emergence of juvenile audiences, literally flooded the market with cheap do-it-yourself paper toys in the nineteenth century. Finally, I will discuss printers’ outputs in relation with the better-known tradition of the so-called Victorian novelties in order to highlight some transnational phenomena that deserve further investigation. This paper presents a work in progress under development in Children and Transnational Popular Print 1700-1900, funded by the European Union under the Horizon 2020 (framework programme for research and innovation, grant agreement 838161).