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The Russian word for these dolls is Matrioshka or Matryoshka. It is widely accepted that the origin of the Russian Doll was a set of dolls picked up by a Russian monk visiting Japan and given to a friend on his return. The Russian Dolls were first created in 1895 for display in the Great Paris Exhibition of that year. Today they are known all over the world, particularly those dolls from the Semyonov factory set up in the 1920's to mass produce just one design for export. All our dolls are sourced from Russia (unless otherwise stated) and are made from sustainable forest Linden (lime) wood. All the dolls are hand-turned and hand painted.