Home Book publication Raymond Briggs, creator of beloved children’s tale ‘The Snowman’, dies aged 88

Raymond Briggs, creator of beloved children’s tale ‘The Snowman’, dies aged 88

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LONDON, Aug 10 (Reuters) – Raymond Briggs, creator of the bittersweet children’s book ‘The Snowman’, has died aged 88, his family said on Wednesday.

First published in 1978, the pencil-and-pencil-illustrated wordless picture book has sold more than 5.5 million copies worldwide while a television adaptation has become a Christmas favorite in Britain and was nominated for an Oscar.

It tells the story of a boy whose smiling snowman comes to life for play during the night, then takes him on a flight through the British winter landscapes.

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The book ends on a melancholy note when the boy wakes up to find that the snowman has melted.

“We know that Raymond’s books have been loved and touched by millions of people around the world, who will be saddened to hear this news,” said the family’s statement, released by his publisher.

“Fan drawings – especially children’s drawings – inspired by his books were treasured by Raymond and pinned to his studio wall.”

Briggs was born in London in 1934 and studied art before publishing a range of children’s books.

Although The Snowman does not depict Christmas itself, an animated television adaptation that first aired on Boxing Day 1982 does, and it remains a staple of British broadcasters’ seasonal programming, telling the story to new generations of fans. ‘children.

It was nominated for an Oscar in 1983 and won a British Academy Television Award the same year.

To celebrate the 40th anniversary of the book’s publication, the Royal Mint has produced a special color coin featuring the boy and his snowman flying over Brighton Pier, on the south coast of England.

Other Briggs characters included a frightening-to-human monster with a surprisingly mundane life named Fungus the Bogeyman, whose daily routine gently satirizes British culture.

He has also published the graphic novels ‘When the Wind Blows’, about a nuclear attack on Britain from the perspective of a retired couple, and ‘Ethel and Ernest’, which tells how his father, a milkman, met his mother, a housekeeper.

“Raymond loved playing the grumpy professional, but he will be remembered for his stories of love and loss,” his literary agent Hilary Delamere said in a statement.

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Reporting by William James and Farouq Suleiman; Editing by Kate Holton and Mark Heinrich

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