From where undertook Mumi - trolls?
While behind our windows temperature falls below zero and begin to be turned snow flakes, together with bears, hedgehogs and gophers, the whole family of fantastic beings falls into hibernation. In the wonderful far valley, having filled the tummies pine needles, peacefully doze Mumi - trolls - marvelous literary creations of the Finnish writer Tove Jansson.
And though their native language - Swedish (Jansson belonged to shvedskogovoryashchy minority), it did not prevent to become Mumi - to trolls the same world famous property of the Country of Suomi as the epos “Kalevala“ or Father Frost Yolopukke.
At the beginning Drawing was i> …
Tove Jansson`s Family was same creative and tolerant, as well as Mumi`s family - trolls. The father is a sculptor, mother - the graphic artist and three children (Tove had two younger brothers) who as a result all became artists.
I if at many writers “at the beginning was the word“, then at Tove drawing generated words. Here we observe original type of the writer - the illustrator. And if Tolkien, and Carroll who too are not bad drawing conceded further these rights to professionals, then for Mumi - such option we will simply not present the epic. Drawings in Jansson`s works exist actually on equal terms with the text and are inseparable from it as the sound and the picture in movies are inseparable.
T. Jansson: “I draw
to explain, allocate or weaken impression of written; it is just attempt to explain that I tried to express in words and, perhaps failed“. But schoolmates did not suspect
of the childhood about future glory of Tove and frankly laughed at her drawings. Therefore the girl did not love school. But liked to leave every summer together with a family on an island of the archipelago of Pellinge where Jansson rented giving. On this island the round beacon (subsequently destroyed during World War II) which will remove to the book “Father and Mora“ subsequently settled down.
besides very important attribute for our article is and... the toilet which was settling down in the yard of their island giving. Its walls were upholstered with a cardboard and served as a peculiar board for drawing and correspondence in which members of family conducted various disputes. During one of such disputes Tove brother - Per - the Catch - showed off with some wise quote from the philosopher Kant. Without knowing that to answer so strong argument, the girl drew on a cardboard “the ugliest being who she could present“ and signed “Edging“.
this being will become Subsequently at first a peculiar emblem with which Tove signed the drawings, and then - that Mumi - the troll - the hero of fairy tales. However, at first he bore other name - Snork - and looked differently - thinner, big-eared and sharp-nosed.
The word “Mumi - Trolls“ for the first time was heard from the uncle Einar from Stockholm at which 15 - summer Tove lived during study in artly - industrial school. Wishing to take away the niece from night visits of its storeroom, the uncle terribly warned: “Beware of cold to Mumi - trolls. As soon as the thief approaches the storeroom, they rush from the minks, touch with the ice muzzles legs and zastuzhivat them“.
In principle, everything is correct - trolls never kind beings were, regardless of how they looked - stupid giants (as in the Scandinavian myths and at Tolkien), or spiteful dwarfs (as in the English folklore or at Andersen).
However an amusing word of Tove was remembered when she suddenly wanted to write the children`s fairy tale. There was it in the winter 1939 during Sovetsko - the Finnish war when began to seem to Tove that “all colors died“ and “it was absolutely impossible even to try to draw pictures“.
T. Jansson: to
“Perhaps, will seem natural and clear that I suddenly wanted to write something, beginning words: “Once upon a time there were...“ Continuation could turn into the fairy tale - it was inevitable. But I apologized that did in the book without princes, princesses and small children, and chose in exchange a figure - a label, an angry being from comic drawings and Mumi - the troll called it“.
So drawing and a name connected. Mumi - trolls became the sweetest and kindest beings though and the place behind a tile oven remained “the national homeland“ them as the uncle specified. Also their shape changed - they began to remind big-bellied long-tailed begemotik.
The fairy tale was called “Little trolls and the Big flood“ and was added in 1945. Though on a plot “Flood“ also precedes other Mumi - the epic, it strongly concedes to the subsequent continuations both on skill, and on fascination. And Jansson considered it unsuccessful. Not without reason into Finnish the first fairy tale was translated to the last from all cycle - even in 1991 - m
In fact, it is the standard fairy tale for small children where Jansson only became skilled - such herself a sketch, approbation of characters - amusing externally, but still superficial and superficial inside. To you it is not necessary to begin with this book acquaintance to Mumi - trolls unambiguously. However to hot admirers of other cycle will not prevent to read it in the informative purposes.
the Plot of “Flood“ is under construction on Mumi`s wandering - the troll and his mother in search of a haven and is followed by quite traditional adventures, hardly capable to give pleasure to the adult reader. The majority of events of a samotsenna and them can easily be deleted, without breaking the main chain of the narration.
But can be learned from the fairy tale how Mumi was found - the father who ran away to wander from hatifnatta, than Ant Lev offended mother as trolls got acquainted with Sniff and as they as a result got to the well-known valley which became subsequently to Mumi - a dale.
the Comet bringing... glory
Despite the aforesaid, first “first attempt at writing“ was not in vain. Tove did not forget about Mumi - trolls and by the result of World War II wrote the second (and in fact, the first real and standing) the tale of Mumi - trolls - “The comet arrives“ (in V. Smirnov`s translation “Mumi - the troll and the Comet“).
the Book was published in 1946, and in it Jansson for the first time appeared in all force of the literary identity. The fairy tale naturally and unostentatiously merged children`s direct game perception of the world and quite adult depth and irony in a whole. The children`s tale of the Doomsday - as it to you?
Many not without the bases consider that peripetias of World War II and nuclear bombing of Japan were cast in a terrible image of the Comet threatening to destroy Earth. Against this eschatological symbol of the fast end there is also a campaign of heroes of Jansson to the purpose to clear what danger consists in and when it happens. And in spite of the fact that the genre of the children`s fairy tale usually - the fact means the happy end, tension does not abandon the reader throughout all book. However the mrachnovatost is constantly brightened up by cheerfulness and optimism of heroes (“Mother something will think up “ ).
“Comet“ got the first success which in two years was consolidated by the following book of Mumi - a cycle - “The Hat of the Wizard“. This is, probably, the most famous Mumi - the fairy tale among the Soviet readers (thanks to the collection of fairy tales of the Scandinavian writers published by considerable circulation), and precisely one of the best. A role was played here also by magic existence (in pure form it is presented in Jansson`s fairy tales seldom), both the fascinating cascade of adventures, and not turbid cheerfulness, but amusing literary receptions it seems: “If you want to know what false teeth the Muskrat turned into, ask mother. She knows“ .
After success of the two first books of Jansson with pleasure develops “gold Mumi - a vein“. In 1950 there are that “Mumi`s Memoirs - the Father“ which he wrote in “A hat of the wizard“. In them the writer clears up family trees of many characters and witty parodies a genre of memoirs prose.
“The father of family and the host, I with grief look back at the rough youth which I am going to describe, and the memoirist`s feather indecisively shivers in my paw.
seems to me, I made many nice cases, and it is even more such which are presented to me nice. And I am sufficiently kind, committed to truth when it not too tiresome (and how many to me years, I forgot)“.
In 1953 Tove gets Selma Lagerlof`s medal, but finds rather mass popularity when begins to draw comics “Moomin“ for “The London evening news“.
B leaves 1954 the book “Dangerous Summer“ where Mumi`s heroes - a dale endure a flood again, escape from it on floating theater and as a result put the whole theatrical play.
“Summer“ became the latest cheerful book of a cycle. Mumi - a cycle still will proceed, but its style and heroes will endure the real metamorphoses and will begin to mature inevitably. The draft of winter, grief and loneliness will get into a safe and joyful world of Mumi - a dale...
But we will talk about it later.