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Welcome to Novi Sad

Serbia‘s second - largest city after Belgrade, the capital of Vojvodina (since 1945 ).
Novi Sad became cultural, financial, and industrial center of Serbia. The initial name of the settlement founded in 1694 on the left bank of the Danube was Serb City.
The settlement officially gained the present name Novi Sad in 1748, when it became a “ Free Royal City “ by Maria Theresa.
Novi Sad is a typical central European town. It has moderate continental climate, with four seasons.
Each season has its particular charm: Cold winters with regular snowfalls, hot summers, mild springs, and rainy autumns.

About Museum “Fantasy”                            

There are many successful doll and toy museums around the world, but amazingly, none in Serbia.
The idea was to establish first such museum in Novi Sad, and to enable children learn many subjects in new way. On top of it, this could make the city a better place for everyone.
The Toy Museum “Fantasy” of Novi Sad opened February 26th 2008, as an educational not -for - profit corporation.
It was formed to collect, preserve, and exhibit toys, dolls, games…
The toys exhibited are part of a collection gathered during more than 25 years by Radmila Velbabović, the founder who serves as the museums full time executive director, curator and when necessery a tour guide.
This collection she started as a student, when she was 18 years old. With age her taste refined and her buying power increased along with an accurate curiosity to learn more about the pieces collected, their origin, their manufacturer, their history…
Mrs. Velbabović founded the museum as a way to share her passion with the public and to educate others about the significance of dolls and toys, their role in worldwide history, culture, art and play, and the craftsman shift behind mecanical toys,tin toys, toy soldier, train models…
The museum has carried out its mission by assembling a collection of more than 5,000 relevant objects including puzzles, games, building sets, chess plays, toys soldiers, tin toys ...   
The other toys displayed are familiar and not -so- familiar characters found in famous stories, comics and movies.
In over seventy showcases we exibit: celluloid, composition, wooden, metal, bisque dolls; mecanical toys, tin toys, toy soliders, train models, steam engins, dolls hauses...
New items come in every day, and there are piles waiting to be exposed.

A nice outgoing for groups, enjoyed by both men and women of all ages.


What is a toy?

The answer may be simply anything that a child can play with.
The main activity enjoyed by young children is play. Play is an important ingredient in life, and toys are a part of our culture. Toys are universal and have served as tools of play for centuries.They are product of an historical period and reflect that time.
The objects and associated information that we collect can give us insight into the social, cultural and economic lives of children across the ages.
Thought the story of toys, one can trace many scientific discoveries and historical events.
The toys of children can relate the story of people advancing and developing in mind and body.
At the same time, the basic function of plaything is the stimulation of child’s imagination.
Child psychologist agree on the useful function of toys which enhance children’s self confidence, teach physical coordination and communication skills, develop the higher brain function, and improve social abilities.
The history of toys is though to have begun in ancient Egypt.Toys have been found in Egyptian, Greek, and Roman burial sites, as well as among the remains of the Mayan and Aztec cultures.
Maya children played with a wheel toy shaped like a mountain wolf.The body was made of baked clay with four wooden wheels attached. It was made about 1100 AD and suggests that the Mayas knew about the wheel although they did not use it on cars for transportation.
The horses made of clay existed in the days of the Egyptian pharaons. Egyptian children had tops, balls, toy boats, and pull- along animals, clay rattles and hoops in 1400 BC.
Doll- like figures existed in the culture but were funeral figures and not playthings. The royal houses of Europe, from Renaissance, became fascinated with automatic toys which combined the skill of craftsmen and mechanical science.
Rather simple by today’s standards, the mechanical toys were made by skilled artisans who used air, water, mercury or clockworks to operate them.
These lifelike mechanical toys become the delight of the royal and rich who demanded more novelties. As craftsman created more realistic and complicated ones, art and science merged in the production of toys.
Minute mechanism performed natural movements in a mechanical duck made by the French toymaker Jacques de Vancason 1709. The duck could puddle through water, preen its feather and move its neck. Moreover, the duck could swallow grain, digest it by the means of a chemical solution inside and dispose of it “naturally”.
The problem of mechanical toys was that they were expensive and were not produced in quantity until the 1800’s.
Wooden toy carving is a traditional skill that has been practiced in many German villages since the Middle Ages.The skill were passed from one generation to the next.
It was in Germany that toy making developed into a large industry. By the end of eighteenth century, toy sellers began to reach a large market of customers through the use of catalogues with price lists and illustrations.