A Short History of Sock Puppets

[ad_1] Puppetry is an art involving manufactured characters and in case of sock puppets are made from socks designed into different faces an...

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Puppetry is an art involving manufactured characters and in case of sock puppets are made from socks designed into different faces and accessories like hats, eye glasses, cigars etc. Sock puppets can be controlled by one hand, allowing the puppeteer to use the other for the second hand or controlling the stage items. A stage of a sock puppet is the size of a table and there can be nine to ten puppets on the stage at one time.

Puppets were used in India back in the 11th century and quickly spread to other parts of Asia. They were used as tools to give morality stories a visual impact that could not be conveyed through words. Puppets in history have been used for presenting good, evil, greed or jealousy with the risk of identifying the real characters. Puppets were made from carved sticks in ancient India and were mostly decorated.

Socks as being a form of footwear for centuries, it started as matted animal hair shaped for wearing on the foot or fitting inside a shoe. This technique was used by the ancient Greeks back in 750 BC. The Romans has also innovated a thick fabric that could be wrapped around the legs in shape of sock.

Egyptian nomad sheep herders invented knitting during the 12th century AD, they created fabric through the simple use of knitting wool yarn by using straight twigs. It was a very advantageous technique and allowed any shepherd or wife to make valuable product instead of selling their wool. This practice spread quickly from Egypt to Middle East and Europe.

Almost quickly, the Muslim knitters in Spain developed a variety of knitting stitches that helped them in making shaped fabrics. The sock was one of first knitted items that were produced. Historians certainly know that patterned socks were made far back in the 1200s and they decorated with complex chevrons and Arabic verses. It can be speculated that sock puppets might have been invented during that time.

Knitted socks till the Renaissance time were exclusive symbol of wealthy people. William Lee of England invented the first knitting machine in 1589 which transformed knitted garments into something which could be purchased by everyone. Knitting has a credit of transforming textile industry and is the forerunner to the industrial age. After Shakespeare's death, the puritan movement was gaining momentum in England and traditional puppetry was banned along with theater. After the end of the puritan times and the return of monarchy, Punch and Judy puppets became commonly linked with hand or glove puppets.

Popular culture sock puppets have been widely used in TV shows, the most famous character was Lamb Chop, it was a sock puppet invented by Shari Lewis for 'Hi Mom', a WNBC show aired in 1957. The term sock puppet is also used for describing a fictitious identity used online for promoting a particular point of view or defending a person.


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Source by Tauqeer Ul Hassan

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On Tv Channelz: A Short History of Sock Puppets
A Short History of Sock Puppets
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