Maths Museum Museum
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Matryoshka dolls
© Islington Artefact Library
Click Here for Interactive Exhibit Matryoshka dolls have been made in Russia for centuries where the name Matryoshka is a term of endearment for a grandmother. The dolls were originally made by the grandfather, painted by the grandmother, as a gift for a new grandchild. Usually, the dolls represent famous characters, peasants or animals. They are made of turned hollowed wood and painted in bright, vibrant colours. The smallest doll however is solid wood. They decrease in size so that each fits inside the next larger. The groups vary in size usually between six and ten but much larger sequences of fifteen or more nesting dolls have also been produced.
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