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Father Christmas distributing toys to children

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    Great Britain (made)

  • Date:

    ca.1890 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Röger, K. (artist)
    Nister, Ernest, born 1842 - died 1909 (publisher)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Watercolour on card

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Ernest Nister (1842-1909) began his publishing career in 1885 when he acquired a lithographic workshop in Nürnberg and printed books for London publishers. In 1888 he became a publisher in his own right with offices at 24 St. Bride Street, London. He appointed the writer and editor, Robert Ellice Mack, as director.

Nister specialised in high quality colour printing for children in the last quarter of the 19th century. Movable books with various mechanisms became his speciality after 1890 (when be published his first stand-up book) but he also produced numerous picture books, annuals, poetry, nursery rhymes, calendars and greetings cards. He worked with a core of writers, including Clifton Bingham and Robert Ellice Mack, and illustrators, in particular Eveline Lance, Harriett M. Bennett, Edith A. Cubitt and Rosa Petherick.

Physical description

Watercolour drawing on stiff card of Father Christmas distributing toys to a group of children. There is a doll in his pocket. He hands a Punch doll to a small child in a high chair. On the right in the background a girl reads a book. Mounted on card.

Place of Origin

Great Britain (made)


ca.1890 (made)


Röger, K. (artist)
Nister, Ernest, born 1842 - died 1909 (publisher)

Materials and Techniques

Watercolour on card

Marks and inscriptions

Bookplate on verso reads: 'From the Library of Anne Renier and F.G. Renier'

Inscribed in blue crayon on verso: 'XXXII', '12/12', '11110', 'K. Röger' and '3'

Initialled in pencil on verso: '1224 [...]'


Height: 426 mm Mount, Width: 323 mm Mount

Object history note

Drawn by K. Röger ca.1890 for Ernest Nister. Bequeathed to the V&A in 1970 by Anne and Fernand G. Renier as part of the Renier Collection.

Descriptive line

Watercolour drawing by K. Röger, ca.1890; produced for Ernest Nister.


Watercolour; Card



Subjects depicted

Toys (recreational artifacts); Books; Children (people by age group); Dolls; Gifts; Highchairs; Boys; Girls; Infants


Drawings; Illustration; Books; Dolls & Toys; National Art Library

Production Type



National Art Library

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