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Encyclopedia > How The Grinch Stole Christmas

How the Grinch Stole Christmas! is one of the best-known children's books by Dr. Seuss. It is written in rhymed verse, with illustrations by the author. The book has been adapted to other media, also discussed below. Dr. Seuss is the pen name of Theodor Seuss Geisel (March 2, 1904 – September 24, 1991). ...


How the Grinch Stole Christmas!, by Dr. Seuss

Dr. Seuss completed How the Grinch Stole Christmas in 1957. The mid-1950s were a fruitful period for Seuss, during which he wrote many of the stories for which he is most admired today, including The Cat in the Hat, If I Ran the Circus, and On Beyond Zebra. Dr. Seuss is the pen name of Theodor Seuss Geisel (March 2, 1904 – September 24, 1991). ... 1957 was a common year starting on Tuesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Millennia: 1st millennium - 2nd millennium - 3rd millennium // Events and trends The 1950s in Western society was marked with a sharp rise in the economy for the first time in almost 30 years and return to the 1920s-type consumer society built on credit and boom-times, as well as the... The Cat in the Hat is a fictional cat created by Dr. Seuss. ...

The Grinch, a bitter creature with a heart "two sizes too small," lives on a snowy mountaintop above Whoville with his faithful dog Max. Envious of the Whos' happiness, he makes plans to descend on the town and, by means of serial burglary, deprive them of their Christmas presents and decorations and thus prevent Christmas from coming. However, he learns in the end that despite his success in stealing all the Christmas presents and decorations from the Whos, Christmas comes just the same. He then realizes that Christmas is more than just gifts and presents. His heart grows three sizes larger, he returns all the presents and trimmings, and is warmly welcomed into the community of the Whos. Christmas (literally, the Mass of Christ) is a holiday in the Christian calendar, usually observed on December 25, which celebrates the birth of Jesus. ...

The book is one of the purest examples of Dr. Seuss's style. The ink-drawn illustrations make use of only black, red, and pink (the latter being the color of the Grinch's eyes), and the versification is strict and never skips a syllable. The purity of the verse is increased by the fact that Seuss avoided introducing made-up words intended to fit the meter (for example, "Jill-ikka-Jast" or "Sala-ma-goox", both from Scrambled Eggs Super).

Adaptations and translations


How the Grinch Stole Christmas! was adapted to television in 1966 as an animated TV special, directed by Seuss's friend and former army colleague Chuck Jones, who did much of the animation himself. The show starred Boris Karloff as narrator and Grinch, and (unusually for adaptations) included the actual text of the book in spoken form. Jones modified the appearance of the Grinch somewhat to fit the medium, rendering him in green and with a more elongated, frog-like face. Jones remarked in an interview that he had made the Grinch look like himself, so he could use his own facial expressions as a model for the Grinch's. 1966 was a common year starting on Saturday (link goes to calendar) // Events January January 1 - In a coup, Colonel Jean-Bédel Bokassa ousts president David Dacko and takes over the Central African Republic. ... Animation is the technique in which each frame of a film or movie is produced individually, whether generated as a computer graphic, or by photographing a drawn image, or by repeatedly making small changes to a model unit (see claymation and stop motion), and then photographing the result with a... A Television Special is a television program that is essentially a television movie or a short film usually intended to be broadcast sporadically, typically once a year at most. ... Charles Martin Chuck Jones (September 21, 1912–February 22, 2002) was an American animator, cartoon artist, screenwriter, producer, and director of animated films, most memorably of Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies shorts for the Warner Brothers cartoon studio. ... Boris Karloff (November 23, 1887 - February 2, 1969), born William Henry Pratt, was a famous actor in horror films. ...

The songs, which helped fill out the story to the length of a television program, had music written by Albert Hague, with lyrics by Dr. Seuss. The best remembered of them, "You're a Mean One, Mr. Grinch" was sung by Thurl Ravenscroft. Ravenscrofts 1970 gospel album Great Hymns in Story and Song Thurl Arthur Ravenscroft (February 6, 1914 – May 22, 2005) was an American voice actor and singer with a deep, booming voice. ...

Dr. Seuss also lengthened the text with two interpolated verse passages. The longer one describes the Who children (in the Grinch's imagination) noisily playing with their Christmas toys . Seuss also added a few lines to the dénouement, which in the original is laconic. These lines were read by Boris Karloff like the others.

The TV special has been highly praised by audiences and film and animation fans alike. It has seen innumerable rebroadcasts in the years since its debut, with annual showings continuing to the present day. The cartoon is typically found on the Internet Movie Database's list of the top 250 films, and is considered one of Chuck Jones' greatest cartoons made after his departure from Warner Bros. The Internet Movie Database (IMDb), owned by Amazon. ... Warner Bros. ...

The Grinch later appeared in a few more specials, and although they weren't as popular as his original Christmas outing, they're well-liked among the viewers. The Grinch returned to animation in the 1977 special Halloween is Grinch Night, in which he sets off to scare everyone in Whoville due to being bothered by a chain reaction of annoying sounds caused by the wind. There, he was voiced by Hans Conried. Later, in 1982, he starred in The Grinch Grinches the Cat in the Hat, where he attempts to ruin things for fellow Seuss star The Cat in the Hat. Most recently, he was a recurring character on the 1996 kids' show The Wubbulous World of Dr. Seuss, where he was voiced by Anthony Asbury. 1977 was a common year starting on Saturday (the link is to a full 1977 calendar). ... A chain reaction is a sequence of reactions where a reactive product or biproduct causes more additional reactions. ... Hans Georg Conried, Jr. ... 1982 is a common year starting on Friday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The Cat in the Hat is a fictional cat created by Dr. Seuss. ... 1996 is a leap year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar, and was designated the International Year for the Eradication of Poverty. ... The Wubbulous World of Dr. Seuss is a live-action puppet show based on characters created by Dr. Seuss, produced by Jim Henson Television, and aired from 1996 to 1997 on Nickelodeon. ...


After Dr. Seuss's death, the book was also made into a 2000 live-action film. Due to all the additions made to the storyline so that it could be brought up to feature-length, it was considerably less faithful to the original book. It creates a new back story to explain why the Grinch acts as he does. The film was directed by Ron Howard, produced by Brian Grazer, and starred Jim Carrey as the title role of the Grinch. This version is often called simply The Grinch; though the title actually seen in the film is How the Grinch Stole Christmas!; the word "Grinch" is written in much larger letters than the rest of the title. 2000 is a leap year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Wikipedia does not yet have an article with this exact name. ... Brian Grazer (born July 12, 1951, in Los Angeles, California) is a motion picture and television producer who founded Imagine Entertainment with partner Ron Howard. ... James Eugene Carrey (originally Carré) (born January 17, 1962) is a Canadian/American actor and comedian. ...


Perhaps because of its demanding meter, How the Grinch Stole Christmas! has been seldom effectively translated, and it is hardly known outside of the English-speaking world. Nonetheless, a Latin translation was prepared by Jennifer Morrish Tunberg with the help of Terence O. Tunberg, entitled Quomodo invidiosulus nomine Grinchus Christi natelem abrogaverit (literally: "How the little envious one named Grinch stole Christ's birthday"). Rather than the rhythmic rhymed text of the original, the Tunbergs produced a prose translation in a somewhat rhythmic Latin. Instead of Dr. Seuss' repetitions of words, the Tunbergs generally come up with multiple synonyms, for instance, the "NOISE! NOISE! NOISE! NOISE!" becomes "STREPITUS, CREPITUS, STRIDOR, FRAGORQUE!" The work has been highly praised by classicists. Latin is the language originally spoken in the region around Rome called Latium. ...

"Maybe Christmas," he thought, "doesn't come from a store."
"Maybe Christmas... perhaps... means a little bit more!"
"Fortasse," inquit "Laetitia diei festi ex ipsis muneribus non proficiscitur..."
"Fortasse," inquit Grinchus, "Laetitia diei festi non est res empticia, non est res quaestuosa!"

"Grinch" as slang

Dr. Seuss's work is sufficiently well known that the word "Grinch" became used as a slang term, designating a cruel, uncaring person, particularly with greedy tendencies. In 1994, during the Republican Party's "Contract With America", political cartoonists frequently applied the term to Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, calling him the "Gin-Grinch Who Stole Christmas". Slang is the non-standard use of words in a language of a particular social group, and sometimes the creation of new words or importation of words from another language. ... 1994 was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar, and was designated the International year of the Family. ... The Republican Party, often called the GOP (for Grand Old Party, although one early citation described it as the Gallant Old Party) [1], is one of the two major political parties in the United States. ... The Contract with America was a document released during the 1994 Congressional election campaign by the United States Republican Party. ... This early political cartoon by Ben Franklin was originally written for the French and Indian War, but was later recycled during the Revolutionary War An editorial cartoon, also known as a political cartoon, is an illustration or comic strip containing a political or social message. ... Dennis Hastert of Illinois, the current Speaker of the House (since January 6, 1999) The Speaker of the House of Representatives is the presiding officer of the United States House of Representatives. ... Newt Gingrich Newton Leroy Gingrich (born June 17, 1943) is an American politician who is best known as the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives from 1995 to 1999. ... Christmas (literally, the Mass of Christ) is a holiday in the Christian calendar, usually observed on December 25, which celebrates the birth of Jesus. ...

Publication data

  • Dr. Seuss (Theodor Seuss Geisel). How the Grinch Stole Christmas! New York: Random House, 1957, ISBN 0394800796
  • Dr. Seuss. Quomodo Invidiosulus Nomine Grinchus Christi Natalem Abrogaverit: How the Grinch Stole Christmas in Latin. Translated by Jennifer Morrish Tunberg with the assistance of Terence O. Tunberg. Bolchazy-Carducci Publishers, 1997, ISBN 0865164193

Random House is a publishing division of the German media conglomerate Bertelsmann AG, which acquired it in 1998. ...

External links

The lyrics to the Grinch Song, "You're A Mean One, Mr. Grinch". The Internet Movie Database (IMDb), owned by Amazon. ... The Internet Movie Database (IMDb), owned by Amazon. ...



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