The Public Paperfolding History Project

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The Paper Cup
 
This page attempts to record what is known about the origin and history of the origami design known as the Paper Cup. Please contact me if you know any of this information is incorrect or if you have any other information that should be added. Thank you.

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In Japan

The Paper Cup appears in 'How to Make Origami' by Isao Honda, which was published by Toto Shuppan Co. Ltd in Japan. by McDowell Obolensky of New York in the USA and by Museum Press Ltd of London in England, in 1959.

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In Western Europe / USA

There is mention of 'paper in the form of a drinking-cup' on page 133 of T T Tiimayensis' 'A History of Magic' published by J J Little and Co in New York in 1887, but, unfortunately, lacking an illustration, it is impossible to be completely sure that this is a reference to the Paper Cup design.

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As far as I am aware the first illustration of the Paper Cup in the historical record is in the book 'Die Frobelschen Beschaftigungen: Das Falten' by Marie Muller-Wunderlich, which was published by Friedrich Brandstetter in Leipzig in 1900.

A second version of what is effectively the same design appears in the same book as Die Wandtasche (the wall pocket)

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The Paper Cup also appears in the book 'Jouxjoux en Papier' by Tom Tit (real name Arthur Good), published in Paris by Paul Lechevalier in 1924, under the title 'Le Gobelet de Voyage'.

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The design also appears:

As 'The Drinking Cup' in 'Fun with Paper Folding', by Murray and Rigney, published by the Fleming H Revell Company, New York in 1928. In this version only one top flap is folded down, so that the outline of the finished design is pentagonal. The author suggests that the reader might 'Make large enough and turn in the (other) point ... and you will have a paper hat.'

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As a 'Drinking Cup' in 'Winter Nights Entertainment' by R M Abrahams, which was published by Constable and Constable in 1932.

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As 'La Timbale de Voyage' in Booklet 1 of 'Images a Plier', a series of 6 booklets published by Librairie Larousse in Paris in 1932.

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As 'Vaso de agua' in Booklet 3 of 'Figuras de Papel', a series of 3 booklets published by B Bauza in Barcelona in 1932.

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As the 'Drinking-Cup' in Margaret Campbell's 'Paper Toy Making', which was first published by Sir Isaac Pitman and Sons Ltd in London, probably in 1937, although both the Foreword and Preface are dated 1936, which argues that the book was complete at that date.

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In 'El Mundo de Papel' by Dr Nemesio Montero, which was published by G Miranda in Edicions Infancia in Valladolid in 1939.

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As 'Vasito' (Glass) in 'El Plegado y Cartonaje en la Escuela Primaria' by Antonio M Luchia and Corina Luciani de Luchia, which was published by Editorial Kapelusz in Buenos Aires in 1940.

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As the 'Paper Cup' in 'The Art of Chinese Paper folding for Young and Old' by Maying Soong, which was published by Harcourt Brace and Company of New York in 1948.

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As 'La Timbale' in 'Au Pays des Mains Agiles', which was published by Editions Fleurus in Paris in 1949.

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