Posted on december 15, 2008
Seventeenth-century doll’s houses were not children’s toys, they were a hobby for ladies, comparable to the cabinets in which gentlemen kept their collections. This is one of three seventeenth-century doll’s houses that have survived intact. It was commissioned by Petronella Oortman, a wealthy Amsterdam lady. The house is remarkable in that all of the components are made exactly to scale. Petronella ordered miniature porcelain objects from China and commissioned furniture makers and artists to decorate the interior. It was extremely costly to create a model house like this. Petronella probably spent between twenty and thirty thousand guilders on her doll’s house. In the seventeenth century she would have been able to buy a real house along one of the canals for that price.
Het lijkt me een beetje als televisie avant la lettre. Ik kan me inbeelden hoe Petronella elke avond voor haar kast stond en verhalen voor de bewoners van haar kast verzon. Vandaag zou ze naar een soap kijken op haar kijkbuiskast.