In a village square in Galicia, Dr. Coppélius, a toy maker, inventor, and magician, exhibits his masterwork in his upstairs window - a life-size doll that he thinks of as his daughter.

Swanhilda enters and sees Coppélia not knowing it is a doll. Frantz, Swanhilda's sweetheart, is attracted to the doll.

The villagers enter and perform a lively Mazurka. The Burgomaster enters and congratulates the couple to be wed. Swanhilda dances with an ear of wheat, listening for the good luck sound which will say that Frantz is true to her. Though he claims to hear the good luck sound, she and all her friends do not, and the marriage appears to be canceled.

After the dancing of the Czardas, the Doctor leaves his house and locks the door. With the other boys, Frantz roughs up Dr. Coppélius. In their horseplay, the key to his studio is lost which Swanhilda and her friends later discover, enabling them to invade his secrets. Dr. Coppelius returns, discovers his door ajar and rushes in. Frantz, meanwhile, curious about Coppélia, raises a ladder to her window and starts to climb.

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Life-sized dolls in various costumes are scattered about the room. Swanhilda and her friends enter and are frightened by the figures. Coppélia is discovered and they realize that she is only a doll. They wind up the dolls, but are interrupted by Dr. Coppélius. The girls flee, all but Swanhilda.

Frantz climbs in a window. He is soon drugged by Dr. Coppélius, and the magician imagines he may animate his doll by drawing energy from the sleeping youth. He attempts this after he has wheeled out Coppélia, who is really Swanhilda who has assumed the doll's place to conceal her own presence. Swanhilda responds to the magic. She dances a Spanish fandango and a Scottish reel, and when the magician is not watching, wakens Frantz who recognizes her as his true love.

Dr. Coppelius is plunged into despair when he realizes the truth. He is left alone with the limp, undressed body of his doll whom never came to life, except in the heartless impersonation of Swanhilda.

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The Manor Grounds - There is great excitement in the village because the Lord of the Manor has delivered a bell to the town. The Burgomaster enters, accompanied by the village children who are to help him arrange for the festivities. The townspeople, dressed for the celebration arrive. Dr. Coppélius interrupts the festivities, demanding to be paid the damages he sustained. The Burgomaster gives the distressed, greedy toy maker a bag of gold. The happy and now married couple arrives. The scene ends on a note of joy with the Burgomaster suggesting that the dancing celebration begin. The pageantry of the wedding dances continues and Swanhilda and

Frantz live happily forever after.