Tikki Tikki TemboThe Legend of Tikki Tikki Tembo: A Chinese Folktale
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Tikki Tikki Tembo is a popular children’s book written by Arlene Mosel and illustrated by Blair Lent. It was first published in 1968 and has since become a beloved classic. Winning numerous awards and capturing the hearts of readers all over the world. The story is based on a Chinese folktale and follows the adventures of two brothers, one with a long name and one with a short name. In this article, we will explore the origins of Tikki Tikki Tembo, its cultural significance, and why it continues to be a favorite among children and adults alike.

The Origin Story of Tikki Tikki Tembo

The legend of Tikki Tikki Tembo originated in China and has been passed down through generations. It is believed to have been first recorded in the book “The Old Man Who Lost His Horse” by Yuan Mei, a famous Chinese poet and scholar from the Qing dynasty. The story has also been retold in various forms, including a Japanese version called “Sankichi and the Bamboo Cutter.”

In the original Chinese folktale, the two brothers are named Chang and Shek. Chang is the older brother with a long name, while Shek is the younger brother with a short name. One day, Shek falls into a well and Chang runs to get help. However, because his name is so long, it takes him a long time to say it and by the time he gets back with help, Shek has already drowned. This tragic event leads to the belief that having a long name can bring bad luck. more updates

The Adaptation of Tikki Tikki Tembo

Arlene Mosel first heard the story of Tikki Tikki Tembo from her husband, who had heard it from his mother. She was immediately captivated by the tale and decided to adapt it into a children’s book. Mosel added her own creative touches, such as the well and the magical cure for Shek’s illness, to make the story more engaging for young readers.

The book was also beautifully illustrated by Blair Lent, who used traditional Chinese art techniques to bring the story to life. The combination of Mosel’s storytelling and Lent’s illustrations made Tikki Tikki Tembo a hit with both children and adults.

The Cultural Significance of Tikki Tikki Tembo

It is not just a beloved children’s book, but it also holds cultural significance. The story highlights the importance of family and the consequences of pride and vanity. It also teaches children about the value of having a short and simple name. Which is a common practice in many Asian cultures.

Furthermore, the book introduces young readers to Chinese culture and traditions. Such as the use of herbal medicine and the celebration of the Dragon Boat Festival. It also incorporates Chinese words and phrases, making it a great tool for teaching children about different languages and cultures.

The Impact of Tikki Tikki Tembo

Since its publication in 1968, it has become a staple in many households and classrooms. It has been translated into multiple languages and has sold millions of copies worldwide. The book has also been adapted into a play and an animated short film, further cementing its place in popular culture.

One of the reasons for the book’s enduring success is its universal message. The story of two brothers and the consequences of their actions resonates with readers of all ages and backgrounds. It also serves as a cautionary tale about the dangers of pride and the importance of humility.

The Legacy of it

This has stood the test of time and continues to be a favorite among children and adults. Its timeless message and beautiful illustrations have made it a must-read for generations. The book has also inspired other works, such as the song “Tikki Tikki Tembo No Sa Rembo Chari Bari Ruchi Pip Peri Pembo” by the band The Roches.

In addition to its cultural impact, Tikki Tikki Tembo has also been recognized for its literary merit. It won the prestigious Caldecott Honor in 1969 and was included in the New York Times Best Illustrated Children’s Books of the Year list.

FAQs about Tikki Tikki Tembo

What is the moral of Tikki Tikki Tembo?

The moral of it that pride and vanity can have serious consequences. It also teaches children about the value of having a short and simple name.

Is this based on a true story?

No, it is a folktale that originated in China. However, the story has been passed down through generations and has been retold in various forms.

What age group is Tikki Tikki Tembo suitable for?

This is suitable for children ages 4-8. However, it can be enjoyed by readers of all ages.

Are there any other versions of this?

Yes, there is a Japanese version called “Sankichi and the Bamboo Cutter.” There are also other adaptations of the story, such as the song “Tikki Tikki Tembo No Sa Rembo Chari Bari Ruchi Pip Peri Pembo” by The Roches.

Why is this a popular children’s book?

It is a popular children’s book because of its engaging storytelling, beautiful illustrations, and universal message. It also introduces children to Chinese culture and traditions.

Conclusion: The Timeless Tale of Tikki Tikki Tembo

In conclusion, It is more than just a children’s book. It is a cultural treasure that has been passed down through generations and continues to captivate readers all over the world. Its universal message, beautiful illustrations, and timeless appeal have made it a beloved classic that will be cherished for years to come. So the next time you read this book to your child or revisit it as an adult.

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