Pop in to see stunning pop-up books

Detail from 1887 circus pop-up book
'International circus' is a movable book
produced in 1887.

Examples of some of the world's finest pop-up books have gone on display at the National Library of Scotland.

Many of these books were designed and given as children's Christmas presents — although these items from the national collections have never been played with.

Ranging from the Victorian era to the 21st century, the books demonstrate the skills of the finest talents in paper architecture and paper engineering.

Rupert Bear pop-up from 1930s book
Rupert Bear pop-up from a
children's annual, 1930.

While the history of books with movable parts can be traced back to the 13th century, it took another 500 years before 3D scenes were able to be created inside a normal book for children.

Nowadays even as complex a structure as Harry Potter's Hogwarts School is not beyond the abilities or imagination of an experienced paper engineer, as visitors to the display will see for themselves.

'Pop-up!' is open daily (except 1 December and public holidays) until 17 January, and entry is free.

Read more in our pop-up books display press release.

20 November 2013



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