ETYM Old Eng. popet, Old Fren. poupette; akin to French poupée a doll, probably from Latin puppa, pupa, a girl, doll, puppet. Related to Poupeton, Pupa, Pupil, Puppy.
1. A doll with a hollow head of a person or animal and a cloth body; intended to fit over the hand and be manipulated with the fingers.
2. A small figure of a person operated from above with strings by a puppeteer; SYN. marionette.
Figure manipulated on a small stage, usually by an unseen operator. The earliest known puppets are from 10th-century bc China. The types include finger or glove puppets (such as Punch); string marionettes (which reached a high artistic level in ancient Burma and Sri Lanka and in Italian princely courts from the 16th to 18th centuries, and for which the composer Franz Joseph Haydn wrote his operetta Dido 1778); shadow silhouettes (operated by rods and seen on a lit screen, as in Java); and bunraku (devised in Osaka, Japan), in which three or four black-clad operators on stage may combine to work each puppet about 1 m/3 ft high.
During the 16th and 17th centuries, puppet shows became popular with European aristocracy, and puppets were extensively used as vehicles for caricature and satire until the 19th century, when they were offered as amusements for children in parks. In the 1920s Russian puppeteer Sergei Obraztsov founded the Puppet Theatre in Moscow. Large-scale puppets have played an important role in street theater since the 1960s, as in Peter Schuman’s Bread and Puppet Theater. Interest was revived by television; for example, The Muppet Show in the 1970s.
In the us, Bill Baird has created more than 2,000 puppets, many for film and television. He worked with Orson Welles, Ziegfeld, at the 1939 and 1965 New York world's fairs, for Radio City Music Hall, and for us State Department tours of India and the usSR. He opened a puppet theater in New York's Greenwich Village 1967.
Mala lutka sa pokretnim udovima koja može da podražava ljudske kretnje (pokreti udova izvode se pomoću konca ili žice); sa ovakvim lutkama izvode se čitavi manji pozorišni komadi u tzv. marionetskim pozorištima, pozorištima sa lutkama.