Worry Dolls

Mouth Sustains Some Chipping in the Area


This 27" lanky limbed,boudoir bed gypsy doll was originally a smoker, I believe. Someone has replaced the original cigarette with a new one made of a toothpick. His mouth sustains some chipping in the area of the cigarette. Interestingly, he comes with a music box and a guitar. The guitar was made in Czecko-Slovakia and is dirty and damaged. Strings and keys(?) are missing from the wooden neck and the tin belly portion is soiled. The music box which rests inside the body of the Gypsy does not work, though occassionally when he reclines on his back, the music will play. Gypsy himself is also quite damaged. His head is falling off his body as his cloth body has become worn and is in the process of tearing. Please note the tears to the back of Gypsy's neck and to his torso. I have "bandaged" him in gauze to prevent further straw from falling out. Gypsy's darkly painted buckram face is also dented and sustains soil. It appears that portions of his face may also have been repainted in pinky tones. His left cheek and chin are dented. Gypsy does retain his original "Belgian Red" mohair wig though! It remains fairly full. His mitten shaped hands are also in worn condition, particularly his thumbs. I believe that his Bohemian clothing is original, though that too may require laundering. Gypsy is missing his original leatherette shoes. Gypsy is quite an intriguing and romantic figure as he strums his guitar. However, he will require major restoration. Please study the photos carefully and email with all questions.

The Fresh Air Had Killed Them

The change had been too much for those children who never went out.

A little further down the Passage there was a family of bookbinders. Their children never went out. The mother was a baroness. De Caravals was her name. She didn't want her children to learn bad language at any cost.

They played together all year long behind the windowpanes, putting their noses in each others' mouths and both hands at the same time. Their complexions were like celery.

Once a year Madame de Caravals took a vacation all by herself. She'd go visiting her cousins in Périgord. She told everybody how her cousins came to meet her at the station in their "break" drawn by four prize-winning horses. They would drive together through endless estates . . . The peasants would troop out to kneel on the castle drive as they passed . . . that was the kind of stuff she dished out.

One year she took the kids with her. She came back alone in the wintertime, much later than usual. She had on deep mourning. You couldn't see her face behind the veils. She offered no explanation. She went straight up to bed. She never spoke to anybody after that.

The change had been too much for those children who never went out. The fresh air had killed them . . . That disaster gave everyone pause. From the rue Thérèse to the Place Gaillon all you heard about was oxygen . . . for more than a month.

-- Louis-Ferdinand Céline, Death on the Installment Plan, tr. Ralph Mannheim (New York: New Direections, 1971), 69-70.