The History of Gnomes – Gnomania

By | June 25, 2019

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Scene from Gnome King and the fairy of the silver mine, at the Queen's Theatre, London, United Kingdom. The Illustrated London News, volume LIV, January 2, 1869. Source: (Getty Image #935341336 De Agostini Collection)

Typical gnomes are those little stone garden people always hanging around in people’s gardens. They are usually colorful with white beards, puffy cheeks, and wearing a dunce cap. Gnomes are depicted in the Wizard of Oz, Narnia, and Middle Earth in various forms.

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Gnomes in England. Source: (Wikipedia)


In actuality, these garden people first appeared on the scene in the 1800s but they looked much different than what you see today. They were first produced in Germany and were made out of clay. In the 1840s, they became popular in the gardens of England. They became increasingly popular and, as a result, were mass-produced in Germany in the 1870s reaching worldwide popularity with the help of August Heissner as well as Philipp Griebel who were manufacturers of these gnomes.