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Home / More Lifestyle / Rudyard Kipling 84th death anniversary: Remembering the writer through his quotes and works

Rudyard Kipling 84th death anniversary: Remembering the writer through his quotes and works

Rudyard Kipling 84th death anniversary: Born in Mumbai, on December 30, 1865, Joseph Rudyard Kipling was an English novelist, journalist, and author of several short stories, who was one of UK’s most popular writers.

more-lifestyle Updated: Jan 18, 2020 11:07 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Delhi
Rudyard Kipling 84th death anniversary: Rudyard Kipling’s bungalow at Fort, Mumbai.
Rudyard Kipling 84th death anniversary: Rudyard Kipling’s bungalow at Fort, Mumbai.(Anshuman Poyrekar/HT)

For some, their first encounter with jungles and wildlife was a much-watched animation series aired on weekends called Jungle Book. An Italian-Japanese anime that was extremely popular in its dubbed version in India, the 52-episode cartoon feature was based on English author Rudyard Kipling’s 1894 collection of short stories, The Jungle Book.

Born in Mumbai, on December 30, 1865, Joseph Rudyard Kipling was an English novelist, journalist, and author of several short stories, who was one of UK’s most popular writers.

The author, whose prolific career saw a number of novels, short stories and poems, passed away on January 18, 1936. He was named after the Rudyard Lake in England, where his parents John Lockwood Kipling and Alice Kipling had courted before marrying and moving to Mumbai in 1865.

Rudyard Kipling was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1907, becoming the first English-language writer to receive the prize. At 41, he is also the youngest recipient of the recognition till date.

On the author’s 84th death anniversary, we look at some of the author’s works:

The Jungle Book: In 1894, Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book was published, going on to become one of the most famous works of children’s literature. It was adapted on the screen several times over the years. Even though the narrative follows a ‘man-cub’ Mowgli and his life in the jungle, raised among animals, the book’s major theme is abandonment with the animals embodying human archetypes.

Kim: Published serially from December 1900 to October 1901 in a magazine, the story of the novel unfolded against the backdrop of the political conflict between Russia and Britain in Central Asia and is noted for its portrait of the people and culture of India.

Something of Myself: The autobiography of Rudyard Kipling that was written in the last year of the author’s life, the unfinished text was edited and prepared for publication by his wife Caroline Starr Balestier. The book though is largely secretive about his private life.

Barrack-Room Ballads: Published in 1890, and written in regional languages, the series of songs and poems by Kipling includes the works Gunga Din, Tommy, Mandalay, and Danny Deever.

One of Kipling’s most famed works is the poem ‘If’ written around 1895 as a tribute to Lean der Starr Jameson, who was the leader of the failed Jameson Raid against the Transvaal Republic to overthrow Paul Kruger’s government, the political tension which led to the Second Boer War.

Even though Kipling’s works fuelled debates, with George Orwell once saying the author was “morally insensitive and aesthetically disgusting”, they still are incredibly interesting conversation starters.

Here are a few quotes by the great author to mull over:

Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind.

We’re all islands shouting lies to each other across seas of misunderstanding.

If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.

A woman’s guess is much more accurate than a man’s certainty.

Of all the liars in the world, sometimes the worst are our own fears.

There is no sin so great as ignorance. Remember this.

We have forty million reasons for failure, but not a single excuse.

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