The Public Paperfolding History Project

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Last updated 28/2/2024


Don Simon
This page is being used to collect information about the history of the paperfolding design known as Don Simon which is made by adding arms and a hat to a paper cone. 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.



As far as I know this design first appears in the historical record in two drawings by Apeles Mestre which were published in 'Llibre Vert' in Barcelona in 1875.



Similar figures appear in 'Travaux Recreatifs Pour les Enfants de 4 a 10 Ans' by Marie Koenig, which was published by Librairie Hachette et Cie in Paris in 1898. Here the figures are called 'Mesdames Les Cloches' and are made into bells by the addition of a clapper made from a large bead or button on a thread. The figure also appears as a decoration on a Christmas Tree.



The design appears as 'Bebe Cloche' in 'Mes Jolie Jeux' by Henriette Suzanne Bres, which was published by Librairie Hachette in Paris in 1900.



As 'Un pequeno monigote' in 'Trabajos Manuales y Juegos Infantiles' by Francisco Blanch, which was published by I. G. Seix y Barral Hermanos S.A.- Editores in Barcelona in 1923.



The design is first diagrammed, under the name in 'Don Simon', in 'El Mundo de Papel' by Dr Nemesio Montero, which was published by G Miranda in Edicions Infancia in Valladolid in 1939. In this version the arms flap about when the strip projecting from the base of the cone is raised and lowered.


The 'Don Simon' figure also appears:


As 'Muneco' (Doll) 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.



As 'The Happy Man' in 'Paper Folding Fun' by Robert Harbin, which was published by Oldbourne in London in 1960.