Antique Victorian Miniature Novelty Trick Treen Coffin “Talked To Death”
A rare 19th century miniature trick coffin with a button to the base and the phrase “talked to death” on a plaque to the front.
The phrase “talked to death” is based on local folklores from the 19th century and is believed to have originated from the medical condition, ‘Prostration’. Prostration was used fairly frequently as a cause of death during the 19th century and refers to a crippling depression where often the person is confined to bed.
The case of an Alice Phillips in 1891, is a fine example. Alice was disabled and was constantly pestered by townspeople on how she should go about regaining her health. She was so troubled by the constant meddling that she ended up dying from prostration. As a result, her husband had the phrase “talked to death” engraved onto her headstone as the cause of her death.
This coffin shaped curiosity serves as a grim reminder of the possible ill effects of meddling and was perhaps used as a trick to ward off meddlers. Not only does it have the phrase “talked to death” to the front, but it has a wooden button to the base, which, when pressed, strikes the victim in the finger with a sharp needle!
Condition is good, commensurate with age. Structurally sound and functions well.
Measures 5.5cm x 1.8cm x 1.1cm
Weighs 7.63 grams