Salty Sam’s Fun Blog for Children

Number 464

Madame Tussaud


Hello Everyone



While children are on holiday they very often take the opportunity to visit places of interest with their family.


The most popular tourist attraction in London before the London Eye was opened, was Madame Tussaud’s Waxworks Museum.


The museum has many replicas of famous people that you can get up close to.


You can ‘meet’ the Royal Family, famous actors and pop stars, sporting heroes and figures from history.


lf you are really little, you will not want to go into the Chamber of Horrors and see lots of murderers and methods of torture from history.


Some of the figures stay in the museum for many years and from time to time are replaced by a more up-to-date and more aged model.


Some of the figures appear when the person they depict is fashionable for a while and then they are replaced by newcomers to the world of fame.


The museum in London is big; but there are other smaller ones in other cities around the world.  The first opened in Amsterdam in 1970.


The story about how these kinds of wax figures first came to be made starts a long time ago.


The museum was founded by a lady called Marie Tussaud.  She was a sculptor who used wax to make likenesses of people.


Marie Tussaud was born right back in 1761 as Marie Grosholtz, in Strasbourg in France.  Tussaud was her married name.


Marie’s mother worked for a doctor in Switzerland who was very talented in modelling with wax.  His name was Philippe Curtius.  He taught the skill to the young Marie and when he moved to Paris he took her with him as his young apprentice. 


She was only six years old.


At the age of 17, she became the art tutor to the sister of the French king, King Louis XVl.  She worked at the Palace of Versailles; a large and beautiful palace surrounded by huge gardens.  lt is near Paris.


But in 1789, disquiet amongst the population of France broke out into a full-scale revolution which continued until 1799. (1789 is an easy number to remember.)


The people were unhappy because they were being heavily taxed in order to help the government out.  lt had debts because of engaging in wars. 


ln addition to this, harvests had failed and the people were hungry. 


Other political decisions that had been made had not helped their plight at all.


The peasants resented the privileges of the upper classes and those in the Church who had comfortable lives while they were struggling.


ln July of 1789, the Bastille was attacked by the common people.


The Bastille was a fortress in Paris that for most of its existence was used as a prison by the French kings.


During ten years of social upheaval, many changes took place in France.


The royal family was replaced by a new system of governing the country. 


France became a republic in 1792.  The king, Louis XVl, and his wife Queen Marie Antoinette were executed in 1793.


The land was divided up and put under different ownership; and common individuals gained more rights and freedoms.


The Revolution is still often remembered in French politics today. 


Bastille Day is a national day celebrated on 14th July every year.


Eventually, after the king was overthrown, the country was instead ruled by a dictator called Napoleon Bonaparte who had become a hero of the Revolution because of his successful military campaigns.  He seized power in 1799 and crowned himself Emperor of France in 1804.


Napoleon then took his armies into other European countries to conquer them and impose the new ideas that had taken control in France.


Napoleon was defeated on Belgium territory at the Battle of Waterloo in 1815 and exiled (taken away and imprisoned) to the remote island of Saint Helena where he was guarded by British troops until his death. 


This cold, damp island is in the Atlantic some long way off from the western coast of Africa. 


The absolute rule of monarchs declined through the 1800s.  Many countries today are republics not monarchies.


During the French Revolution, Marie Grosholtz was captured and imprisoned along with many members of the aristocracy and Catholic Church and she was sentenced to death. 


The method used at this time was the guillotine.  lt cut a person’s head off and it tumbled into a basket.  lt was quite a quick method of death compared to some.  lt is thought that people would have a few seconds of consciousness as they saw the inside of the basket before they died.


Large crowds gathered to watch the executions.  They were very angry with the aristocrats and then very pleased to be conquering them.


Marie was in prison for three months awaiting execution. 


Luckily, she had a friend who used his influence to secure her release.  She worked for the royal family, but she was not an aristocrat herself.


She went on to make models of many people who were killed in the Revolution.


ln 1794, Philippe Curtius died and left Marie his huge collection of wax models.


She took the models on a tour of Europe and exhibited them in various places over the next 33 years.


ln 1795, she married Francois Tussaud and renamed her show.


ln 1802, she moved to London to exhibit her models alongside another show  (which was a kind of theatre that used special effects on stage using magic lanterns) in the Lyceum Theatre.


She was then unable to return to France because war had broken out there under the rule of Napoleon.


So while the Napoleonic Wars were raging, she toured Britain and lreland with her show and then eventually came back to London where she found a permanent home for her exhibition in Baker Street in 1836.


The Chamber of Horrors she set up contained victims of the French Revolution and her newly created figures of murderers to begin with; and other figures were later added as the years went by.


Although a lot of the models were lost to a fire in 1925 and bomb damage in 1941, there are still some of the sculptures made by Marie and Philippe in the museum. 


The casts she used had been kept and the lost models could be remade.


Marie died in her sleep in 1850 and her self-portrait model is now on display near the entrance of the museum.


ln 1883, a new building was built to house the exhibition in Marylebone Road under the management of Marie’s grandson and later the business was sold by the family to a group of businessmen. 


An animated ride called The Spirit of London opened in 1993.  You can ride around in little, taxi-shaped cars.


Be aware that some of the models look like modern people and are positioned in the museum to trick you!


So watch out for them too!



lf you like my blog, please support it by telling all your friends and followers about it.


Thank you!


And see you again next Fun Friday!


Love and kisses



Salty Sam





Bill and Bob’s Joke of the Weekjokejoke


Bill:  l have a lot of jokes about waxworks but none of them work.


Bob:  That is because they can’t move!


Bill:  No l mean the jokes don’t work, not the waxworks.


Bob:  Oops! Sorry! To err is human – but to blame it on somebody else shows good management potential.



Salty Sam © Christina Sinclair 2015

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of material from this blog without express and written permission from this blog’s author and owner is strictly prohibited.

Links may be used to



Picture Gallery


Marie Tussaud


The aristocracy was taken to the guillotine in carts


Louis XVI


The last queen of France















The Rev Green who lives in the vicarage behind the Rocky Bay parish church is a very kind man.

He was watching the television over Christmas and saw advertisements asking for money for homeless people living out in the cold and it got him thinking.

He lives in a very large house with a lot of rooms.

The church owns a lot of property; land and buildings – more than the rest of us put together.

He thought he could put some of his rooms to good use.

You know that the word we use for children who don’t have parents is an orphan.

There are many orphans in stories like: David Copperfield, Oliver Twist, Harry Potter and Paddington Bear.

But did you know that about 80% of the children in orphanages around the world have at least one parent still alive?  For one reason or another, they are not able to look after them.

Children can only be looked after for a while and then, in their late teens, they have to look after themselves.  Sometimes it is not easy to be alone, especially when you are not properly grown up.

So the vicar wondered if he could take in some young people who were leaving social care so that they would have a nice home and emotional support until they were able to afford homes of their own.

He put the idea out into the community and received some very kind offers of help.











Quick Quiz


Can you un-muddle these letters to find words?


  1. sroxwawk
  2. mumuse
  3. safumo
  4. opptrass
  5. het yoral mafliy
  6. viomestsar







lt’s the Weekend!




Look at Blog Post 381 for the pattern for the doll.

These boots match the hat and scarf to be found on Blog Post 405.


Look for more candy strip doll patterns on other blog posts.  Check out the Index of Projects on Blog Post 1.




Using 4mm knitting needles and purple dk yarn cast on 10 stitches

Knit 4 rows of stocking stitch


Decrease 1 stitch at the beginning of the next row, knit to end

Decrease 1 stitch at the end of the next purl row by knitting 2 stitches together purlwise


Knit 12 rows of stocking stitch


Knit 2 rows of garter stitch

Cast off



Using 4mm knitting needles and purple dk yarn cast on 10 stitches

Knit 4 rows of stocking stitch


Decrease 1 stitch at the end of the next knit row by knitting 2 stitches together

Decrease 1 stitch at the beginning of the next purl row


Knit 12 rows of stocking stitch


Knit 2 rows of garter stitch

Cast off



Using 4mm knitting needles and purple dk yarn cast on 5 stitches

Knit 2 rows of garter stitch


Knit 52 rows of stocking stitch


Knit 2 rows of garter stitch


Cast off



  1. Sew the side seams of each boot right sides together with the gusset between the side pieces.
  2. Turn the boots right sides out.
  3. Sew a trim of fluffy yarn to the top of the boots by laying the fluffy yarn on top of your knitting and sewing over it with white dk yarn – this technique is called couching – see illustrations below



Please note that the material on this blog is for personal use and for use in classrooms only.

It is a copyright infringement and, therefore, illegal under international law to sell items made with these patterns.

Use of the toys and projects is at your own risk.

©Christina Sinclair Designs 2015sand



Quick Quiz Answers


  1. waxworks
  2. museum
  3. famous people
  4. pop stars
  5. The Royal Family
  6. movie stars



Free Prince Charles & Camilla Wax Statue Stock Image - 36370871



Embroidery Stitches

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