Sunday, February 14, 2010

FDC from Poland/FDC de la Pologne

Tytus, Romek and A'Tomek/Tytus, Romek et A'Tomek

Tytus, Romek and A'Tomek

It is hard to believe that the comic book about Tytus, Romek and A'Tomek is already 52 years old, and its creator has turned 86 this year. Henryk Jerzy Chmielewski, known as Papcio Chmiel (Papa Chmiel), was born in 1923. He participated in the Warsaw Uprising. In his youth, he served in the Polish Army where he started out on his artistic career as a supervisor of a bulletin. Since 1947 Henryk Chmielewski published cartoons in "Świat Przygód", and then, for many years in "Świat Młodych" magazine. In the recent past Papcio Chmiel published an autobiography whose second volume "Tytus zlustrowany" (Tytus screened) is, as the author himself puts it, "the reminiscences of a wacky gaffer and grey-moustached artist". According to what the author said, past May he created the last episode of the cartoon story entitled: "Tytus, Romek i A'Tomek jako warszawscy powstańcy 1944, z wyobraźni Papcia Chmiela narysowani" (Tytus, Romek and A'Tomek as Warsaw insurgents, drawn from Papa Chmiel's imagination). Papcio Chmiel was invited to decorate the wall of the Warsaw Uprising Museum with a mural. Tytus, Romek and A'Tomek that appeared on the wall were presented as scouts of a field post office.
Henryk Chmielewski is the Knight of the Order of Smile. In 2007 he was honoured with the Glora Artis Medal.

Half a century of Tytus

Tytus de Zoo is an anthropoid ape that is accompanied by tall and thin Romek and short and thickset A'Tomek. Their adventures have entertained and educated several generations of children and youth. The first episode of Tytus, Romek and A'Tomek takes place in cosmos. Next episodes (still black and white) appeared in "Świat Młodych". Since the mid 60's new, book version volumes of adventures of Tytus, Romek and A'Tomek began turning up in bookstores. In total, there were 31 books, such as, among others, "Tytus zostaje harcerzem" ("Tytus becomes a scout") (1966), "Tytus kosmonautą" (Tytus the spaceman) (1968), "Tytus na dzikim zachodzie" (Tytus in the Wild West) (1974), " Wyprawa na Wyspy Nonsensu" ("The expedition to the Nonsense Island") (1977), "Tytus tajnym agentem" ("Tytus the secret agent") (1997), "Tytus się żeni" ("Tytus is getting married") (2000), "Tytus graficiarzem" ("Tytus the graffiti writer") (2002), "Tytus kibicem" ("Tytus the fan") (2008).
New stamp and First Day Cover
Three stamps with the characters from Papcio Chmiel's comic book present them in the form of photographs from police files, which show exact height of a photographed person. As a result, we now know exactly how tall Tytus, Romek and A'Tomek are. At the bottom of each stamp, there is an author's signature. The issue is accompanied by an occasional date stamp taking form of speech bubbles in use in Warsaw 1 Post Office.


Poczta Polska has been issuing stamps devoted to children's literature and its popular characters for many years. In 1962 it issued a six stamp set with J. M. Szancer's illustration relating to Maria Konopnicka's tale "O krasnoludkach i sierotce Marysi" ("Little Orphan Mary and the Gnomes"). In 1968 there was an issue of set of stamps with the most popular characters from tales, and in 1987 and 2005 Poczta Polska brought out two sets regarding Andersen's fairy tales. In 1993 it issued stamps presented characters appearing in Kornel Makuszyński's stories: Koziołek Matołek (Matołek the Billy-Goat) and Małpka Fiki-Miki (Fiki-Miki Monkey), and in 1996 a set entitled "Brzechwa Dzieciom" ("Brzechwa for children").

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