Puppets and Marionettes

Posted on May 22,2012, 10:26am

Puppets from X
Marionettes from X

When I was a little kid, I used to play puppets and paper dolls, and that's really a hobby of mine. But a lot of people become confused when talking about puppets and marionettes.

Here is how to tell the difference.

Puppets are all those strange little creatures, usually without legs, which are made to move by the puppet masters either from below or from inside the puppet. Marionettes are those which are controlled from above. In the theater, marionettes are controlled by a man who stands above them, on a sort of platform. He moves them by means of metal rods or wires. Many marionettes have joined limbs and can made to walk, run, sit down, bow, pick up objects and throw them. A famous Chinese master was able even to have his marionettes fit an arrow and bow and fire it. Because it has a mouth which can move, a marionette can even be made to talk and sing. At Austria, there is a theater where marionettes perform the music of Mozart and Tchaikovsky.

Puppets are much less complicated than marionettes, and puppets show much more spontaneously. Of all animated dolls, the puppet is probably the oldest and certainly the cheapest. However, its very simplicity means that anyone can play with it and make up their own shows.

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