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This is the first full-colour history of the world-famous toy soldiers to chart the whole story of their development from Victorian table toy to 21st Century collectable. Prior to 1893 the family toy business of the Britain family was struggling as the toy industry was dominated by German manufacturers and importers. Then came the fateful decision first to import, then to design and manufacture, toy soldiers, an area the German firms were particularly strong in. Britains Toy Soldiers were born and soon their boxes stamped with the slogan 'Best Quality English Make' were being eagerly opened by little boys across Britain and then around the world. The rest, as they say is history and it is all captured here by James Opie, the world's leading expert on the subject, as he lovingly traces the varying fortunes of arguably the most famous British toy company. Illustrated with lavish colour photographs, many of them featuring items from the author's own collection, the book includes feature sections such as collectors' favourites and prices, high-value and famous sets, artistic highlights, quirks and mysteries.It is without doubt the most authoritative book on the subject and will be welcomed by the thousands of devoted collectors world wide as well as many more with fond memories of childhood battles with these beautiful toys.
James Opie's highly popular Collecting Toy Soldiers (1987) was an inspirational book for anyone involved in the hobby. Nearly a quarter of a century on, this is a completely new companion updating the experience for the twenty-first century collector. James now gives the reader the benefit of over thirty years' participation as one of the world's leading authorities on toy soldiers, figures and models, and a lifetime as a collector himself.Collecting Toy Soldiers in the 21st Century contains comprehensive advice on all aspects of collecting, fully illustrated with new pictures. The main menu is an exposition of the thousands of different possibilities for pursuing individual fulfilment. Guidance for every budget includes price trends and pitfalls to avoid when buying or selling at auction, shows, on-line or privately. The informative and often-amusing anecdotes are provided from James' own involvement, andillustrate just how satisfying it can be to explore this blend of history, tradition, nostalgia and play, whether on the most grandiose scale or with the most limited of funds.