Sunday, February 19, 2012

Cats at School

Before I introduce Oliver and Charlotte to these lovely books, I thought I'd upload some of the excellent illustrations in them to share.

These are from one of my favorite books that I had as a child.  My mom dropped them off for me last week and I'm so happy to have them!  They bring back such wonderful memories...

There are several books in this series with illustrations by Swiss artist Eugen Hartung (who also did the Dressed Cats series of postcards for the Mainzer company during the 40s, 50s and 60s) and text by Joerg Schneider:

Merry Cat Adventures (Die Froehlichen Katzenabenteuer)
The Merry Year of the Cat (Das Froehlichen Katzenjahr)
The Merry School for Cats (Die Froehlichen Katzenschule)

These are from The Merry School for Cats.

"On the way to school" 
Notice: mother cat on the left eyeing scene with disdain.

"Art Class"  Notice: student goofing in teacher's spot
+ student drawing mouse on peer's back!

"A Class Interruption"  Notice: taxidermied studies ironic?

"Home Economics"  (my personal favorite!)
Notice: taunting mice in window overlooking Alps.

"Smoking out Back"  Notice:  Teacher's coming!
Cat on the right..."I don't feel too good"...

"Chimney Sweeper"
Notice: Woman Cat knitting + Old Cat smoking a pipe!

There are several opinions on these illustrations out there.  I think they're very funny...lovely, even.  They are definitely taking "animals personified" a step further than Beatrix Potter, which is why they speak to me still as an adult.


  1. Love the illustrations! I can see why they would be your favorites. What fun that your mom kept the books for you all these years. Thank you for sharing with us.

  2. I knew it! Cats are not as sweet and innocent as they claim to be..Wait until I tell them "the cat is out of the bag"...LOL! I love the illustrations. I have never seen them or heard of the books.

  3. Hi Melissa,

    LOVE the illustrations! The details are amazing. I wonder if they have them on Amazon. Must check! Thanks for sharing :)

  4. What a talent! the illustrations are just lovely!

  5. I love those illustrations! Good illustrations make children's books such a joy!

  6. These cat illustrations are funny.They dont make them in this style any more.I remember loving to look through my dads cuboard as a child and finding his childhood books "Bright Eyes" was one that stand in my memory .Like this one on etsy .


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