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Goclaire Doll Collection
France
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Welcome to my France dolls page. Enjoy!

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Dancing Girl

Moll
Doll From Nice
Origin: City of Nice, Cote D'Azure, France 1999

A Devouassoux Santon Man
Santon Figure
Origin: Menton, CoteD'Azure, Provence France 1999

French Affair
Pony Tail Cutie
Origin: Cannes, Cote D'Azure, France 2000

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Santon Basket Man
Santon Basket Man
Origin: Cannes, Cote D A'zure, France

Alouette

My French Doll Collection's crowning feature is without doubt my Santon collection which Mum and Dad started some years back. Santons(little saints) are a twelfth century tradition that began in Italy but continued into France. It was the devotion to the Nativity of both the Italians and the French that caused the creation of the santon. During the French Revolution, a ban on religious expression halted the midnight mass on Christmas Eve and churches were closed. The clever people of Marseille outwitted the ban by replacing the religious figurines of the Nativity with everyday people of the village. They began by using people as members of a public nativity. From there the idea came to make the clay statues representing those people who had participated in the manger scene. The main idea really was that people gave a gift of their labor to the Baby Jesus.

Talking about the French Revolution, did you know that a famous world statesman, when asked in 1950 about the long term impact of the French Revolution, said  " Well it's really far too early to say"!!!

This one above was found by Mum in the old town of Nice.We liked the fact that each santon, notwithstanding social standing, has a valuable contribution.  The man, rather bent from gathering sticks, brings the source of warmth. The fisherwoman, rather plump, calls out loudly to all of her customers to come and see the fresh catch that her husband has brought. The lavender gatherer, the snail hunter, the basket weaver and countless others offer a charm and naivite that is irresistible. It is truely a lovely tradition.