Origami Heaven

A paperfolding paradise

The website of writer and paperfolding designer David Mitchell


Apuntes para un tratado de cocotologia by Miguel de Unamuno
'Apuntes para un tratado de cocotologia' (Notes for a Treatise on Cocotology) is an appendix to the novel 'Amor y Pedagogia' (Love and Pedagogy) by Miguel de Unamuno, which was published by Henrich y Cia in Barcelona in 1902.

The treatise is a whimsical, perhaps tongue-in-cheek / satirical, discussion of the Cocotte / Pajarita design attributed to Don Fulgencio, the main character in the novel itself. Most of it seems to be deliberately obscure. It includes discussion of how to recreate the Cocotte / Pajarita shape using Tangram pieces.

For those who are interested:

A full version of the original book in Spanish can be found at https://archive.org/stream/amorypedagogia00unam?ref=ol#page/236/mode/2up

A French version titled 'Notes pour un traite de cocotologie', translated by Emma H Clouard, was published in the edition of 'Mercure de France' for 1st May 1939. This version can be found at https://www.retronews.fr/journal/mercure-de-france/01-may-1939/118/4092369/1

I have not been able to find an English translation online but the Gutenberg text version of the original Spanish, found at https://www.gutenberg.org/files/49149/49149-h/49149-h.htm can easily be translated using an online translator if required.

The actual paperfolding content is restricted to a mention in passing of, and an illustration of, the traditional Table

and a discussion of the ways in which Cocottes / Pajaritas with different characteristics can be achieved by blintzing the paper various numbers of times. Three variants are described. Adequate instructions for producing the designs are lacking but they can be worked out with a little fiddling around.

1, The basic Cocotte / Pajarita developed from a doubly blintzed square (or from a windmill base).

2, A smaller version developed from a triply blintzed square, which has 'two triangular bags' ie pockets, the openings for which are on top of its head.

3, A still smaller version developed from a quadruply blintzed square, which has a double-layered head (so that there are upper and lower parts to the beak) and pockets in the neck. Only this version is illustrated.