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Interesting Facts - Literature

English Language
"Go". This is the shortest complete sentence in the English language.

Fairy Tales
In downtown Lima, Peru, there is a large brass statue dedicated to Winnie the Pooh.

Fairy Tales
The brothers Grimm (Jacob and Wilhelm), collectors of the famous Grimm's Fairy Tales, were not storytellers, nor were they simple lovers of fairy tales. The Grimms were language scholars, the greatest of their time by most accounts, and the stories were collected and codified in the early nineteenth century as an exercise in comparative German philology and grammar.

For several decades the well-known Belgian mystery writer Georges Simenon wrote, on the average, one Novel every eleven days. Besides the more than 230 Novels he penned under his own name, Simenon wrote 300 other books under a pseudonym.

Part of Lewis Carroll's classic, "Through the Looking Glass," was omitted from the original publication and was only made known to the general public after 107 years of obscurity. The section, which featured a giant wasp wearing a wig, was left out because Carroll's illustrator, John Tenniel, refused to illustrate it. "A wasp in a wig," said Tenniel, "is altogether beyond the appliances of art."

Nursery Rhymes
This Nursery Rhyme history comes from the court of Queen Elizabeth I. The queen is said to have teased her courtiers, much the way a cat teases a mouse. She herself was very fond of dancing to the tune of a fiddle. One of her courtiers was nicknamed "Moon" and another "Dog." Moreover, Elizabeth had a lady in waiting known as "Spoon." One day, we are told, a gentleman of the court known as "Dish" eloped with Mistress Spoon, inspiring the following:
Hey diddle, diddle,
The cat and the fiddle,
The cow jumped over the moon.
The little dog laughed to see such sport,
And the dish ran away with the spoon.

Nursery Rhymes
The Nursery Rhyme "Old King Cole" is based on a real king and a real historical event. King Cole is supposed to have been an actual monarch of Britain who ruled around 200 A.D.

Though it is not widely known, the Italian painter Michelangelo (1475-1564) was considered by his contemporaries to be one of the greatest Poets of all time. About 250 of his Poems and sonnets have come down to us today and are still read by scholars, historians, and Poets.

Emily Dickinson (1830-1886), America's most famous woman Poet, published only seven Poems during her lifetime. All of these, moreover, were published anonymously and often against her will. Dickinson, a recluse most of her life after an unfortunate early love affair with a married minister, wrote her Poetry in absolute secrecy and rarely shared her work even with her family. It was only after her death that volumes of her writings were discovered, and it was not until 1890, four years after she died, that the first collection of her work was published.

Arthur Jean Nicolas Rimbaud (1854-1891), the great French Symbolist poet, wrote almost all his notable Poetry between the ages of fifteen and twenty. In 1879, after having spent his adolescence and young adulthood in wandering, scandal, and debauchery, Rimbaud suddenly repudiated his art, traveled to the Middle East, set up a business in Ethiopia, and spent the rest of his life as a merchant. He never wrote another Poem.

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