Ben

Rabbit Rattle Soft Toy
ca. 1906 (made)
Ben thumbnail 1
Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
Temporary Exhibition, room 38
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

This bear belonged to the Cattley family who lived in Ealing, west London. The two boys, Gilbert and Donald, and three girls, Nellie, Constance and Maud, were all born between 1885 and 1892. Between them they owned a vast array of soft toys including nine teddy bears. These would have been among the first available bears in England. The children were devoted to their toys. They made beautiful clothes for them, took them on holiday, photographed them and painted their portraits. Drawings by the children tell us that this bear is called Ben.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Stuffed and sewn velvet and cotton.
Brief Description
Rabbit Rattle 'Ben'; Velvet, German, c1906
Physical Description
Rabbit soft toy made of cream and brown velvet with a rattle inside the hollow body. It has black glass eyes and it wears a cream cotton satin dress covered with a layer of lace, closed at the back with a white button. It has also a pale red satin ribbon round at the neck with a small bell as well as a red, blue and white ribbon round to its body.
Dimensions
  • Height: 11.5cm
Production typeMass produced
Marks and Inscriptions
Mark at the bottom of the rabbit: Gesetzt Geschutzt
Credit line
Given by Mrs. Maud Evelyn Cattley
Object history
Given by Mrs. Maud Evelyn Cattley. This teddy bear belonged to her children, who also made their own elephant soft toy called 'Pumpie'. Together with their other soft toys and teddy bears that were very popular at that time, Ben was treated like a member of the family.
Subject depicted
Summary
This bear belonged to the Cattley family who lived in Ealing, west London. The two boys, Gilbert and Donald, and three girls, Nellie, Constance and Maud, were all born between 1885 and 1892. Between them they owned a vast array of soft toys including nine teddy bears. These would have been among the first available bears in England. The children were devoted to their toys. They made beautiful clothes for them, took them on holiday, photographed them and painted their portraits. Drawings by the children tell us that this bear is called Ben.
Collection
Accession Number
MISC.63-1979

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record createdJuly 1, 2009
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