This Day in History (10-Dec-1907) – Rudyard Kipling, author of `The Jungle Book’ and `Kim’, received the Nobel prize for literature

Considered one of the great English writers, Joseph Rudyard Kipling was born 1865, in Bombay (Mumbai). For Kipling, India was a wondrous place. Along with his younger sister, Alice, he reveled in exploring the local markets with his nanny. He learned the language, and in this bustling city of multiple religions, Kipling fell in love with the country and its culture. However, at the age of six, he was sent to Southsea, England, to receive formal British education. He was severly illtreated by the foster family. He found solace in books to overcome grief.

In 1882, Kipling’s parents had him return to India, as they could not afford his college education. The sights and sounds, even the language, which he’d believed he’d forgotten, rushed back to him upon his arrival. Kipling made his home with his parents in Lahore and, with his father’s help, found a job with a local newspaper. The job offered Kipling a good excuse to discover his surroundings. Kipling’s experiences during this time formed the backbone for a series of stories he began to write and publish. They were eventually assembled into a collection of 40 short stories called Plain Tales from the Hills, which gained wide popularity in England.

In 1889 he returned to England and visited America. He published a second collection of short stories, Wee Willie Winkie and American Notes, which chronicled his early impressions of America. His poems include Mandalay & Gaunga Din. He also published his first major poetry success, Barrack-Room Ballads. He subsequently settled in Brattleboro, Vermont, USA where he built a house and named it as “The Naulahka”. His work during this time included The Jungle BookThe Naulahka: A Story of the West and East andThe Second Jungle Book, among others. His tales enchanted boys and girls all over the English-speaking world. By the age of 32, Kipling was the highest-paid writer in the world.

End of 19th century, Kipling settled in UK due to family dispute. Kipling’s books during these years included Kim, Just So, Puck of Pook’s HillActions and ReactionsDebts and CreditsThy Servant a Dog and Limits and Renewals. He is the youngest writer to win Nobel prize for literature at the age of 42.