A.A. Milne is quite simply one of the most famous children’s authors of all time. First published 90 years ago, he created Winnie-the-Pooh and his friends Piglet, Eeyore, Tigger, Kanga and Roo based on the real nursery toys played with by his son, Christopher Robin. And those characters not only became the stars of his classic children’s books, Winnie-the-Pooh and The House at Pooh Corner, and his poetry for children, they have also been adapted for film, TV and the stage.
A.A. Milne grew up in a school - his parents ran Henley House in Kilburn, for young boys - but never intended to be a children's writer. Pooh he saw as a pleasant sideline to his main career as a playwright and regular scribe for the satirical literary magazine, Punch.
Writing was very much the dominant feature of A.A. (Alan Alexander)'s life. He joined the staff of Punch in 1906, and became Assistant Editor. In the course of two decades he fought in the First World War, wrote some 18 plays and three novels, and fathered a son, Christopher Robin Milne, in 1920 (although he described the baby as being more his wife's work than his own!).
Observations of little Christopher led Milne to produce a book of children's poetry, When We Were Very Young, in 1924, and in 1926 the seminal Winnie-the-Pooh. More poems followed in Now We Are Six (1927) and Pooh returned in The House at Pooh Corner (1928). Through his writings for Punch magazine, A.A. Milne met E.H. Shepard. Shepard went on to draw the original illustrations to accompany Milne’s classics, earning him the name “the man who drew Pooh”.
Image credit: The National Portrait Gallery, image by Howard Coster.
'Once upon a time, a very long time ago now, about last Friday, Winnie-the-Pooh lived in a forest all by himself under the name of Sanders.'A.
A. Milne's stories about Pooh and his friends have been loved by generations of children and their parents since Winnie-the-Pooh was first published in 1926.
This magnificent slipcase features the four classic Winnie-the-Pooh titles: Winnie-the-Pooh, The...
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