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The History of the Snowman

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What is the origin of the snowman? And more specifically, the image everyone gets in their head (carrot nose, coal eyes, etc)?
Who made the first snowman? Who first came up with the idea of placing snowballs on top of each other, and who decided they would use a carrot for a nose? Most puzzling of all: How can this mystery ever be solved, with all the evidence long since melted? The snowman appears everywhere on practically everything – from knickknacks to greeting cards to seasonal sweaters we plan to return. Whenever we see big snowballs our first impulse is to deck them out with a top hat. Humorist and writer Bob … more about book…

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What is the origin of the snowman? And more specifically, the image everyone gets in their head (carrot nose, coal eyes, etc)?(r/AskHistorians)

The only major resource I can find on the subject is The History of the Snowmen by Bob Eckstein. In it, he comments that the earliest mention of an anthropomorphic snow sculpture is from an illustrated manuscript, The Book of Hours, from the Netherlands. It depicts a snowman with a rather anti-Semitic nature, lacking arms and legs.

Eckstein makes mention of a more detailed event in history from Brussels, known as the Miracle of 1511, which was a public art instillation of over 100 snowmen built by the townsfolk. Many of them were politically-themed, some shown making rude gestures toward the church or government buildings. Others were comical, while others yet had some severe lewd connotations.

Source: Winter’s Effigies: The Deviant History of the Snowman

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AskHistorians

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1

Sum Of Upvotes

771

Amazon Price

$3.38

Book Binding

Hardcover

Type Code

ABIS_BOOK

Book Author

Bob Eckstein

Book Edition

1

Book Publisher

Gallery Books

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The History of the Snowman

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What is the origin of the snowman? And more specifically, the image everyone gets in their head (carrot nose, coal eyes, etc)?

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