Peepshow Images

In the 18th and 19th centuries the terms peepshow or peep show had a different and more innocent connotation than the term has today. Search for "peep show" or "peepshow" in Google image search and you had best make sure "Strict SafeSearch" is turned on! Even then there will be few of the antique peep-boxes in the results. Peepshow boxes were also called raree shows, derived from "rare shows". They are called the television of the day because they were a window on a wider world. Carried from place to place by intenerate showmen or as children's toys or parlor decorations they showed pictures that often changed as the light was manipulated inside the box.

Above is a charming metal sculpture of a young woman peering into a peepshow box while a young man manipulates the views with a cord. A small child tugs at her skirt to get his turn. We found this treasure at a model train show many years ago. We have seen porcelain groups on the same subject that are identified as "after F. Boucher". We have not yet seen a Boucher painting of this subject but hope to locate it.

On the left is a small brown Jacquard tapestry of a boy standing beside a two position peepshow on a typical saw horse base. A punch figure sits on the top. We have corresponded with a French collector who owns an original painting of the subject from a Jacquard factory.

On the left is a charming hand colored print of a fair ground peepshow surrounded by eager children and a few adults. It appears to be early 19th century from the dress style. The two small vignettes at the top are a bonus.

Below are two trade cards that feature peepshows.

Optical Toys in our collection *Expanded and updated 10/1004
Persistence of Vision Toys
- The Thaumatrope
- The Zoetrope
- The Praxinoscope
- The Phenakistoscope
- Flip Books
Our Peepshow Toys
- Diorama Prints
- Peepshow Changing Views
- Peepshow images < You are Here
Our Zograscope Viewer
Our Magic Lanterns
- Magic Lantern Graphics
- Magic Lantern Slides

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**NOTE** All items on the Collection of Collections web site are in our private collection and are NOT for sale. From time to time duplicate items from our collection will be offered for sale in the Do You Remember This? shop on the GoAntiques cyber mall. Visit the Do You Remember This? inventory page for photographica and toaster related collectibles.

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Updated on 10/2004