Matryoshka - A Symbol of the Russian Soul
Monday, 12 January 2015 03:55

Matryoshka, Russian nesting doll

Matryoshka- A Symbol of the Russian Soul

The Russian souvenir doll matryoshka is all too familiar to whoever knows anything about Russia. It is considered a symbol of Russia, and it is perhaps the most famous souvenir people bring back from Russia. Children enjoy playing with matryoshkas and people in the west usually display it in their house for interior decoration.

But few people know that the author of nesting dolls became Zvezdochkin, whereas the artist named Malyutin started to depict matreshkas as peasant girls. 

So why is it called Matryoshka?

It is believed that the name comes from the Russian name Matrona (Matron), which in turn, came from the Latin name, meaning "noble woman". And indeed, with this name, the doll has really become "noble." Very quickly, the Matreshka became a symbol of Russian folk art and spread across Russia; in each province it was "dressed" according to local traditions. The dolls changed length and sometimes shape when they were being redesigned to match the local customs and traditions. 

Even around 200 years ago, not many people knew about these matryoshka dolls. The most popular time for the nesting dolls began around 50 years ago when the Soviet Union began allowing foreign guests to come to visit and participate in various festivals. Each guest wanted to buy a matryoshka as a souvenir. Even today it is the most popular souvenir for tourists to bring back from Russia, so he or she can remember the visit because the matryoshka really embodies the Russian people and their broad minds, bright colors and friendly families.

The matryoshka is also a symbol of life. A woman gives birth to her daughter and then she, in turn, gives life to the next one and so on. The matryoshka also symbolizes wealth, fertility and motherhood. Today the matryoshka has been designed in ways to reflect the current pop culture of the world. You can find matroyshkas in the style of sports, fairy tale characters or even cartoon characters. These are typically made for foreigners to purchase. But it is always best to buy a traditional matryoshka doll that truly reflects the Russian soul.


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