Jean de Brunhoff

po_brunhoff-jean20Jean de Brunhoff (December 9, 1899 – October 16, 1937) was a French writer and illustrator known for creating the Babar books, the first of which appeared in 1931.

Brunhoff was the fourth and youngest child of Maurice de Brunhoff, a publisher, and his wife Marguerite. He attended Protestant schools, including the prestigious Ecole Alsacienne.

Brunhoff joined the army and reached the front lines when World War I was almost over. Afterwards, he decided to be a professional artist and studied painting at the Académie de la Grande Chaumière in Paris. In 1924 he married Cécile Sabouraud, a talented pianist, and they had two sons Laurent and Mathieu in 1925 and 1926; a third son, Thierry, was born nine years later.

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