Rus Articles Journal

Who such James Kryus and who are they are his heroes?

What is Great children`s books? What does it mean to you, my dear reader? So much it is written also about magnificent “Alice in Wonderland“ in various translations, and about the Gold book of tales, and of brothers Grimm, both about Goffman, and about Pamela Trevers and Mary Meyp Dodge, and about Astrid Lindgren and Selma Lagerlof, and about Milne, and about Lewis, and about Tolkien, and about tens of others which were pleasure of our childhood, read and re-read then it is constant.

It is sure that each of us has one - two most beloved children`s books which did not enter ten - another of the most known. Certainly, I have such “children`s love“ and. The book to which I come back and still, being absolutely already adult, the book with which our child grew, and, I hope, sometime, reading and re-reading it, future grandsons will mature.

This book of James Kryus “My great-grandfather, heroes and I“. When it was presented to me by parents, years in seven, seemed boring and boring. And years in eleven was suddenly, during an illness, it is opened, read and loved forever. Both her heroes - both people, and literary characters as it often happens, became almost “relatives“, and the island of Helgoland - dream, that place which should be visited by all means.

The author of the book of this, James Jacob Hinrich Krues who was born in 1926 and died in 1997 - the person, in Germany well-known. The children`s writer, the prose writer and the poet awarded in 1968 with Hans Christian Andersen`s medal, a so-called Nobel Prize for children`s writers.

Kryus, the native of the island of Helgoland, the native of a simple family (his father was an electrician, grandfathers and great-grandfathers - fishermen, seamen) since the childhood showed poetic abilities, for as was nicknamed in a family by the Small Poet (The old Poet called his great-grandfather).

The island of Helgoland, with its difficult history, belonging at first to Denmark, then England, passed only in 1890 from British to Germans, occupied by a small nationality - northern friezes, endured terrible, senseless bombing at the end of war, in 1945, and practically became deserted - and from - for evacuations, and from - for bombardments. The English focused senior generation of a family of Kryus was negative to the Nazi regime very, but James called in Luftwaffe in 1944 repaid a debt to the Third Reich and after war moved to Hamburg.

It graduates from Normal school in Lyuneburge, but the teacher does not manage to become - fast recognition and success in quality of the writer and the publicist do not leave time for teaching. In 1950 there is its first children`s book - “Hanzelman travels round the world“, in 1962 - “Tim Taler or the sold laughter“, most, perhaps, known in Russia, and, at last, in 1967 - “My great-grandfather, heroes and I“ - part of the big story “My Great-grandfather and I“. These books were republished repeatedly.

The author`s summary of the book looks as the stylized introduction to medieval chronicles:

The short doctrine

about heroes and heroism

with the verses and different


which are thought up on an attic

by my great-grandfather and me,

rewritten on the clean copy

for entertainment

and lecture of children

and their parents

by James Kryus...
Yes the book is also conceived by

in the best traditions of the European chronicles. All types of heroism are sorted with truly German validity and truly English humour there. Hints, the hidden quotes, analogies, parallels, parodies overflow this children`s - and such serious book. And everything that is stated in it, does not become outdated and which - that finds also new, deep and sad, sense, as, for example, history of the boy Blazhe from Montenegro.

Heroes of different times from antiquity pass before us a train up to now - serious and ridiculous, real and imaginary, clever and not too, recognized and is not present: Heracles who “was courageous and full of strength“ and the baggy resourceful knight Pomelot (a name - a brilliant find of the translator A. Isaeva, we will compare - Camelot, Lancelot), the simple miller and the robber, the peasant and the clown Pepe, the hero Siegfried who not it is also great, the trusovaty and careful predictor of weather Jan Jansen and the poor landsknecht from Flanders, Henry and his twenty aunts, the bear who took seat on an ant hill, the pig wearing watch - and many, many others.

This book in which there are morals, but is not present boring edification and pathos, there is a humour, game, grief and irony and if somewhere and small lecture is required, it is given an amusing poetic shape.

These, for example, lines, in my opinion, quite precisely transfer the concept “Schools of Life. ru“.

The one who and all the

Considers himself best of all than others In general considers

A of all others and all other

for bad,

Finds boring and tasteless,

Ridiculous, silly, small, mean,

itself Let will get rid from a shor

I will broaden horizons!
the book, turned to the great-grandson Comes to an end with the poem of the great-grandfather with

. That it is always the most important to be only itself - and nobody else. The great-grandfather - is also the main character of this book. The hero, which all heroism - to be itself. Worthy and honest person. It is difficult, imperceptible, daily heroism.

Well, Small, farewell also think of that,

That, everyone in the hour, we will die.

A will judge later who the coward who the hero,

That was seriously and that was game.

And later will answer a difficult question -

Where the truth where a joke where a joke seriously. to

But jokes end. Life has a limit.

Ya here what to tell you, Small, wanted:

While you at the very beginning of a way,

Joke, but seriously, joke more cheerfully.

Ya itself so joked. But let each of us

Quietly leaves, becomes the hour

Ya in heroes was not appointed destiny,

Ya just always remained itself.

I you remain yourself, my grandson,

Always and in everything!

Your Old friend.

Read children this fine, present book. Esteem aloud if you find time. And let it will be a little ridiculous and old-fashioned - reading aloud, evening after evening. Present to your children the world of heroes of James Kryus - you will never regret about it.