Ms. #460 offers about everything a collector would want. She is by Galluba and Hofmann, one of the finest German manufacturers, and is of the most extraordinary bisque and modeling. Not only is she a scarce and unusual pose, she is one big bisque beauty, at 9.5 inches long. And if that wasn't enough, she is all original, from her brown mohair wig to her light blue silk net bathing suit and cap with pink ribbon straps. She even has her original cardboard inventory tag tied with black string to her upper arm. Written in ink on one side of the tag is “8/-” and on the other “No. 60/1423k.”
As the Victorian era passed into the Edwardian and Roaring Twenties, a market developed for bisque and china bawdy novelties and figurines of women in revealing outfits. Although now most of these figurines seem more coy and cute than ribald and risque, in their time they symbolized the casting off of the perceived restraints of the Victorian era.
These little lovelies included bathing beauties, who came clad in swimsuits of real lace or in stylish painted beach wear, as well as mermaids, harem ladies, and nudies, who were meant to wear nothing more than an engaging smile. Also produced were flippers, innocent appearing figurines who reveal a bawdy secret when flipped over, and squirters, figurines that were meant to squirt water out of an appropriate orifice.
Most were manufactured in Germany from the late 1800s through the 1930s, often showing remarkable artistry and imagination, with Japan entering the market during World War I.