Friday, May 7, 2010

Famous Dyslexic Authors: Hans Christian Andersen

Hans Christian Andersen, the iconic children's story writer, would have been 205-years-old in April this year (2010).

He was a man of incredible imagination, a prolific writer and many other talents.

Here is a short list of 10 facts that you may not know about the Danish fairytale writer.

1. The Danish author was born on April 2, 1805 in Odense, Denmark, and lived to the age of 70.

2. He died in Copenhagen several weeks after hurting himself when he fell out of bed.

3. He is Denmark's most famous son and internationally renowned; his birthday is now celebrated as International Children's Book Day.

4. His most famous works include The Steadfast Tin Soldier, The Snow Queen, The Little Mermaid, Thumbelina and The Ugly Duckling.

5. His stories and poetry have been translated into more than 150 languages, inspiring films, plays and ballets.

6. A dyslexia sufferer, he left home at the age of 14 for the bright lights of Copenhagen.

7. After failing to make it as an actor he turned to writing and quickly became a favourite of the then King Frederick VI, who was to later grant him a travelling pension.

8. He had his first story published - The Ghost at Palnatokes Grave - at the age of 17.

9. Copenhagen's Little Mermaid statue was erected in its harbour in his honour. There are also statues dedicated to him in New York, California and Bratislava, Slovakia.

10. In Shanghai, China, a theme park based on his tales and life opened in 2006.

Happy Birthday Hans!

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