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The first illustrator of The Hobbit

The first illustrator of The Hobbit. The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien was published in the former USSR in 1976. All the drawings were done by a popular Russian illustrator

Published in the USSR in 1976 “The Hobbit”. Mikhail Belomlinsky – The first illustrator of The Hobbit

The first illustrator of The Hobbit
Written by English writer John Ronald Reuel Tolkien “The Hobbit” appeared in the Soviet Union in 1976. And it was Mikhail Belomlinsky, who first illustrated the book. His talented drawings, endlessly reprinted and reissued, still popular in Russia. Meanwhile, Natalia Rakhmanova made the translation of the Russian version of “The Hobbit”.
Soviet artist Mikhail Samuilovich Belomlinsky (born July 27, 1934) worked largely with children’s literature. Besides, since 1971 he was the chief designer of the children’s magazine “Koster” (Bonfire). Meanwhile, in 1989 he emigrated to the United States, and worked there as art director of the newspaper “New Russian Word”. In fact, he did a lot of illustrations and caricatures. However, the most famous work of Belomlinsky became illustrations of the Soviet edition of “The Hobbit”. Noteworthy, the prototype of Bilbo Baggins became famous Russian actor Yevgeny Leonov (2 September 1926 – 29 January 1994).

Russian version of The Hobbit

Published in The USSR “The Hobbit” by J.R.R. Tolkien (1976). The first illustrator of The Hobbit Mikhail Belomlinsky

In addition to Russian translation, made by Natalia Rakhmanova, published in 1976 by the publishing house “Children’s Literature”, there were additional translations. However, they were not from the original, but from the Russian translation. In particular, into Armenian, Moldavian and other languages. However, the Ukrainian translation (K.: Veselka, 1985) was made by Ukrainian poet and translator Alexander Mokrovolsky from the original.

The first illustrator of The Hobbit