9781852855116

Madame Tussaud and the History of Waxworks

by
  • ISBN13:

    9781852855116

  • ISBN10:

    1852855118

  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2006-08-10
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic
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Summary

The success of Madame Tussaud's, from its beginnings in Paris before the French Revolution to its prolonged fame as a popular tourist attraction in London, bears out the fascination of waxworks. Yet Madame Tussaud was by no means the inventor of wax figures or their only exhibitor. Wax heads and models had been used since Roman times and were used for saints' statues by the Catholic Church and for anatomical teaching. There were also many rival shows, often travelling from town to town, as Tussaud's did for its first thirty years in England. Pamela Pilbeam sees Madame Tussaud herself and her exhibition as part of the wider history of wax modelling and of popular entertainment. Tussaud's catered for the public's fascination with monarchy, whether Henry VIII and his wives or Queen Victoria, as well as for their love of history, acting as an accessible and enjoyable museum (but also providing the perennial fascination of the Chamber of Horrors.).

Table of Contents

Illustrations; Introduction; 1 The Origins of Wax Modelling; 2 The Wax Salon; 3 Revolutionary Paris; 4 The Travelling Wax Exhibition; 5 The Baker Street Bazaar; 6 Wax Rivals; 7 From the Great Exhibition to the First World War; 8 Waxworks in the Age of Film; 9 The Appeal of Waxworks; Notes; Bibliography; Index

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