Antique Treen and Straw Work Noah's Ark & Animals

This lovely flat bottomed wooden and straw work Noah's Ark with 39 wooden animals and people. probably originated from the Erzgebirge region of Germany, c1880.

Noah's Arks were very popular children's toys in the 19th century and most wealthy families would own one, which would be permitted to be played with on a Sunday only!

The majority of Noah's Arks were made in Germany and there were basically three different types. A flat bottom one, pictured here, a round bottom one and a bottom in the shape of a boat. The animals went in and out of the ark via either the roof or a sliding side panel, and were decorated by either painting, lithogaphics or the finest ones were straw work, illustrated here. These antique wood and straw arks were made with individual pieces of straw and would be stained to give a multi coloured effect.

Noah's Arks were not made by big toy companies but in the main it was a cottage industry with families literally making one or two particular types animals hence the different expressions that can be found on the animals faces. Other families would have built the arks and different families would then been painting and decorating them. If you had a large enough family then maybe the whole ark would be made by the family.

Nowadays these antique treen Folk Art Noah's Arks are very collectible and both the arks and the animals are difficult to find.

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We first became involved in Antique Treen and furniture some twenty five years ago and since then a passion for Treen, small wooden snuff boxes and decorative wooden items has developed into Opus Antiques.

This web site shows only a  small selection of our current stock for sale, if you are looking for something you don't see, please contact us.


We are also interested in buying Antique Treen items. As well as using our Contact page, you can also email or telephone us on 07941 285532


The word Treen is derived from the word tree and is a term used to describe wooden household objects, all turned from one piece of wood e.g. a bowl, plate, gingerbread mould, and spoons, always having a function.

Nowadays when we talk about Antique Treen it tends to cover all small wooden items including antique snuff boxes, candle stands, spice towers, etc. often made from several pieces of turned wood.


When a piece of wood has been painstakingly turned or carved, handled, polished and loved over a few hundred years old, it can develop a wonderful colour and patina and becomes an irresistible piece of Antique Treen.

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Address: Bath, Somerset       Contact Telephone: 07941 285532       Email: