„Pszczoły” (“The Book of Bees”) by Piotr Socha

„Pszczoły” (“The Book of Bees”) by Piotr Socha (text by Wojciech Grajkowski) is a Polish children’s non-fiction book from 2015 published by Wydawnictwo Dwie Siostry.

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The cover of „Pszczoły” [source]

„Pszczoły” is a big format book, similar to the world-famous „Mapy” by Aleksandra and Daniel Mizielińscy from 2012 (also published by Wydawnictwo Dwie Siostry). Each spread is dedicated to another topic concerning bees: their biology, production of honey, human-bees relations during history, modern beekeeping etc. Among them ancient Egypt, Greek mythology, and ancient history (Alexander the Great and Poppaea Sabina, the second wife of the emperor Nero) are also present.

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Alexander the Great (dead) in the barrel filled with honey (fragment), illustration by Piotr Socha.
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The ancient Egipt spread (fragment), illustration by Piotr Socha.
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Greek Gods spread (fragment with Zeus), illustration by Piotr Socha.
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Poppaea Sabina taking bath in the milk of hundred asses and applying honey to her skin (fragment), illustration by Piotr Socha.

Also there are two newspaper-like spreads, containing briefly described facts: on one of them the Aristotle is mentioned, the other – Virgil’s “Georgics”. Besides ancient historians and writers such as Strabo and Pliny the Elder are mentioned.

See more:

An interview with Agnes Monod-Gayraud, a translator of „Pszczoły” (in English):

  1. About „Pszczoły” (in Polish) – link.
  2. The official website of Dwie Siostry publishing house: http://www.wydawnictwodwiesiostry.pl
  3. The official website of Piotr Socha: http://www.piotrsocha.pl
  4. Some of the foreign editions of „Pszczoły”:
  • Dutch: Piotr Socha, “Het bijenboek”, trans. Greet Pauwelijn, Tielt: Lannoo, 2016.
  • English: 1) Piotr Socha, “The Book of Bees”, trans. Agnes Monod-Gayraud, London: Thames & Hudson Ltd., 2016 (UK), 2_ Piotr Socha,”Bees: a honeyed history”, trans. Agnes Monod-Gayraud, New York: ABRAMS Books for Young Readers, 2017 (USA).
  • Finnish: Piotr Socha, “Mehiläinen”, trans. Päivi Paloposki, Helsinki: Nemo, 2016.
  • French: Piotr Socha,”Abeilles”, trans. Lydia Waleryszak, Paris: De La Martinière jeunesse, 2016.
  • German: Piotr Socha, “Bienen”, trans. Thomas Weiler, Hildesheim: Garstenberg, 2016.
  • Italian: Piotr Socha, “Il regno delle api”, trans. Valentina Parisi, Milano: Electakids, 2016.
  • Russian: Piotr Socha, “Пчелы” [Pchely], trans. , Mocква [Moskva]: Самокат [Samokat], 2017.
  • Spanish: Piotr Socha, “Abejas”, trans. Katarzyna Motoniewicz y Abel Murcia, Madrid: Ma-eva, 2016.
  • Swedish: Piotr Socha, “Stora boken om bin”, trans. Tomas Håkansson , Stockholm: Alfabeta, 2017.

Found by Krzysztof Rybak

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Traces of Antiquity in “MAPS” by Aleksandra Mizielińska & Daniel Mizieliński

Aleksandra Mizielińska and Daniel Mizieliński are the creators of books for children, illustrations, fonts, applications, and websites. They run their own desing studio – Hipopotam Studio.

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Aleksandra and Daniel Mizielińscy [source]

Their “MAPS: A Journey around the World in Pictures” (Polish: “Mapy: obrazkowa podróż po lądach, morzach i kulturach świata”, created by Aleksandra Mizielińska and Daniel Mizieliński), containing 51 pictorial maps for children, became an international bestseller.

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Front cover of the Polish edition of “Maps” [source]

The book was published for the first time in 2012 in Poland, by Wydawnictwo Dwie Siostry. Then, it has been translated into many different languages and was published in (approximately) 25 countries. The publication won prestigious awards, among others Prix Sorcières (2013) and Premio Andersen (2013), and was found on the list of “the six most interesting and most beautiful illustrated children’s books, released in 2013” by “New York Times” (read more).

Znalezione obrazy dla zapytania mizielinscy mapy światowe wydania
Various world releases of “Maps” [source]

In the book we find many traces of Graeco-Roman Antiquity – they are located on the maps of Italy and Greece. We see there some important characters (among others): Julius Caesar, Homer, and Pythagoras, as well as mythical creatures (Siren, Centaur) and the most important monuments.

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The photos of the maps were taken by the author of this post.

See more:

Found by Dorota Bazylczyk

 

“Tru” (2016) by Barbara Kosmowska

“Tru” by Barbara Kosmowska, illustrated by Emilia Dziubak is a Polish children’s novel from 2016 published by Media Rodzina.

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The cover of “Tru” [source].

The story is about a hare called Tru who lives in a town divided into two distinct districts: a rich and a poor one. Tru, as an inhabitant of the latter, is unable to buy expensive gadgets so he decides to invent them. With his new machines, toys, and vehicles, he manages to erase the differences between rich and poor communities.

In the town centre stands a statue of a local hero, Zając Herkules [Hercules the Hare]; also, a Zając Herkules award was given to Tru for creating innovations for the forest. The text does not explain the origins of the name or the deeds done by Zając Herkules for the community. By using the mythological reference, the author is able to create a modern version of the classical hero, who can be regarded as a role model for his community. It could also be the case that Tru became inspired by Zając Herkules’ deeds (although this is never made clear to the reader) and decided to fight the obstacles and injustice in the world the best he can, that is with his talent for inventing new objects which help the community. This shows the young reader that it is not only the strong and muscular, like the mythical Hercules (or his hare fellow, Zając Herkules) who may become a hero, but anyone can, if only his/her talents are used to perform good deeds.

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Zając Herkules [Hercules the Hare], illustration by Emilia Dziubak.

See more:

Found by Krzysztof Rybak

 

“Romans Go Home!” Card Game

“Romans Go Gome!” [PL: “Rzymanie do domu!”] is a quick card game designed by Eric B. Vogel, published for the first time in 2013 by Vainglorious Games.

Front cover of the Vainglorious Games edition  [source]

Since 2014, Lui-même publish “Romans Go Gome!” in a graphic design by François Bruel. This version of the game is available in many language versions, for example German, French, English, and Polish.

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Front cover of the Lui-même edition [source]
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Polish version of the game published by Trefl Joker Line [source][source]

In the game we change into the Caledonians, who try to destroy the Hadrian’s Wall. Points are collected by capturing the Roman forts.

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“Romans Go Gome!” is intented for 1-4 players in the age of 13+.  It has only three rounds.

Read more:

  • “Romans Go Home!” on BoardGameGeek
  • The review of the game on Youtube:
  • Romans Go Home – the famouse fragment from Monty Python’s “Life of Brain” :), a possible inspiration for the game? [May contain content inappropriate for children.]

Found by Dorota Bazylczyk

 

“Rombies” – a Graphic Novel about Roman Zombies

We found something for the zombie fans! 🙂 It’s a new graphic novel series “Rombies”, written by Tom Taylor, illustrated by Skye Ogden and coloured by Mikiko Ponczeck. It is published by Gestalt Publishing.

The cover of Rombies #0 [source]
The cover of Rombies #1 [source]

The stories depicted in “Rombies” are related to the historical events associated with Roman gladiators, senators, and rulers. In its comic version, however, the Roman world turns out to be full of dangerous zombies, what makes the fabula very modernized and original.

See more:

Found by Dr. Elizabeth Hale – the founder of the Antipodean Odyssey blog about the explorations in children’s culture and Classical Antiquity.

“Letters from Felix” by Annette Langen

“Letters from Felix: A Little Rabbit on a World Tour” [in German original: “Briefe von Felix: ein kleiner Hase auf Weltreise”, in Polish: “Listy od Feliksa: Mały zając podróżuje po świecie”] is a children’s book written by the German author Annette Langen, published for the first time in 1994. The illustrations are made by Constanza Droop.

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The cover of the Polish version of “Letters from Felix: A Little Rabbit on a World Tour” [Mamika Publishing House]

The book tells a story about two friends: Sophie and her plush toy rabbit – Felix. When Sophie and her parents return from their vacation, Felix gets lost at the airport. The girl feels very sad because she never separates from her toy. One day however, she receives a letter, and it turns out that it is written by Felix. The rabbit explains to the girl that he is fine – he just got into the wrong plane.

Felix starts to travel around the world – he visits London, Paris, Rome, Cairo, Kenya, and New York. From every place he sends a letter to Sophie – the readers will find his letters placed inside the book. At the end of the story, Felix manages to come back home – he also bring some presents for Sophie (and of course for the readers ;)), that are placed in a little paper suitcase at the end of the book.

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The first installment of the adventures of Felix and Sophie initiated a series that has several parts. In one of them, entitled “Felix Travels Back in Time” [Germ.: “Neue Briefe von Felix: Ein kleiner Hase reist durch die Vergangenheit”, Poln. “Nowe listy od Feliksa: Mały zając podróżuje po przeszłości”], published for the first time in 1995, the rabbit goes back in time and he travels among other places to the world of Ancient Greece.

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The cover of the polish version of “Felix Travels Back in Time” [Mamika Publishing House]

In 2002 there appeared a children’s TV series, based on the books about Felix and Sophie, entitled “Letters from Felix”, directed by Alan Simpson and produced by WunderWerk and Caligari Film in co-production with TV Loonland and ZDF (Supported By FFF).

The series consists of 26 episodes.

Found by Dorota Bazylczyk

All the photos of the Polish version of book were taken by the author of this post.

MUJO and OLYM – Mythical Games Created by Oink Games Inc.

MUJO is a puzzle game created by Oink Games Inc. OLYM is another game from the MUJO series, which has entered the top 10 puzzle games in more than a hundred countries around the world (read more). Both games were created in 2015 and are available for free on Android and iOS.

The main icon of MUJO [source]
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The main icon of OLYM [source]

MUJO and OLYM consists of defeating soldiers and monsters from the Greek mythology by combining the largest number of the same blocks. The more blocks you connect, the greater power you’ll get. If you collect a treasure box during the play, you obtain a God or Goddesses, who helps you in defeating the opponents.

The game is most admired by its minimalist, colorful graphic design.
[source]

The graphics of the main characters of the game were created by HEY graphic design studio (Barcelona, Spain). Their illustrations of  the mythological characters could be admired on the Oh my God Exhibition.

See more:

Found by Dr. Elizabeth Hale – the founder of the Antipodean Odyssey blog about the explorations in children’s culture and Classical Antiquity.