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Museums of Switzerland

June 22, 1986|United Press International

NEW YORK — Spaghetti-eating frogs and automated dolls of the 18th Century are among the displays greeting visitors to Swiss museums. Among the more unusual of such storehouses of the past are:

--The Frog Museum in Estavayer-le-Lac: This gothic-style building houses an assemblage of stuffed frogs in glass cases, acting out human situations. The frogs are displayed playing cards, eating spaghetti and getting their hair dressed.

These scenes caricaturing human behavior date back 120 years, when Francois Perrier spent his retirement catching frogs and preparing them for his "show."

The museum, closed Mondays, is open between April and October, 9-11 a.m. and 2-5 p.m.

--Zurich's Wohnmuseum: The museum's exhibit of 20 family living and working rooms shows the style of life in Zurich between 1650 and 1840. The Wohnmuseum, at Baerengasse 22, operates all year 10 a.m. to noon and 2-5 p.m.

--The Musee d'Art et d'Histoire in Neuchatel: A set of "automats," automated figures built in the 18th Century, are featured. The mechanical dolls include a writer who draws on a built-in memory to pen up to 40 messages with a quill, and an artist capable of executing four sketches.

They can be seen 10 a.m. to noon and 2-5 p.m. daily except Mondays, although the aging mechanisms are only set in motion on the first Sunday of each month, or by special request.

Further information on these and other museums in Switzerland is available from the Swiss National Tourist Office, 250 Stockton St., San Francisco 94108.

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