The Moomins are cult! Young and old enjoy the cute characters. For several generations, the hippo-like trolls from the children's rooms around the globe have become indispensable. In the Little Finland online shop, you will also find lots of great products with the golden creatures. And yet I notice again and again: Many do not even know that the Moomins come from Finland!
The backgrounds are by no means known to everyone. A good reason to take a closer look at the world of the Moomins. Not only do I want to tell you something about the genesis and the individual characters, but you'll also learn where to experience the Moomins in Finland up close.
Tove Jansson - the creator of the Moomins
Actually who invented the Moomins? The answer to this question is: It is the writer Tove Jansson. Born in Helsinki in 1914, the Finland Swede was not only an author but also a graphic artist, illustrator and illustrator. In addition to her award-winning Moomin books, she also wrote adult literature. In addition, she is considered a dedicated women's rights activist. In her honor, in addition to several commemorative coins and a stamp series was issued. Since 2014 there is also a Tove Jansson Park (Tove Janssonin puisto) in Helsinki. Jansson died in 2001 in her native city.
What kind of beings are the Moomins actually?
The Moomins are similar to hippos, but they are artifacts that also have features of trolls. They are therefore gladly called a Moomin troll. They are characterized by their white color and their characteristic tails. In addition to the Moomin family, there are the Snorks, which are related, but stand out by some other hair growth and special properties. Together they live in their own little world, the Moomin Valley. And of course, the human-like figures such as Little My or Snufkin should not go unmentioned - but even more so in the context of the presentation of the individual characters.
The story of the Moomin books
The first Moomin book written by Tove Jansson appeared in 1945. "Moomin's long journey" is today regarded as a milestone in Finnish literary history. It was followed at irregular intervals, the other works "Comet in Moomin Valley", "The Moomins. A droll society "," Moominvaters Wild Youth "," Moomin Valley Storm "," Winter in the Moomin Valley "," Moomin Valley Stories "," Moomin's Wondrous Island Adventures "and" Autumn in the Moomin Valley ". In addition, several picture books and comics appeared. Later followed by film adaptations, among others, as part of the Augsburger Puppenkiste (a marionette theater in Augsburg, Germany)and as anime series.
The most important Moomin characters
To give you a better overview of the Moomin Universe, I would like to introduce you to the most important characters in detail below. After the German name is the Finnish name of the character - so you learn something for your next stay in Finland and can shine there with insider knowledge.
He is always a good-humored and imaginative being who is very enthusiastic. Moomintroll loves to explore the world. He enjoys collecting stones and loves the sea. He is also very sociable and a family man. The human-like Snufkin is his best friend, a not always straightforward love affair exists to the Snorkmaiden.
Moominmamma is a calm and well-balanced mother who does not disturb anything so quickly. Not only does she care about her family, but she is also very hospitable. With its positive nature and solution-oriented way of thinking it is virtually indispensable in the Mum Valley. You easily recognize her by her apron and handbag.
The adventurous Moominpappa is proud to be the head of the family. He thinks a lot and offers his help to others. Although he loves his homeland he is always open for new things. Moominpappa has experienced a lot in his life and often tells about it. Its characteristic features are cylinder and walking stick.
The Snorkmaiden is Moomintroll's playmate and girlfriend. The two have a lot of fun together. However, she is not only happy but also very wavering in her views. She is a daydreamer and belongs to the family of Snorks that resemble the Moomins. When the snorky girl is sad, she turns green.
Little My (Pikku Myy)
Little My lives with the Moomins in the Moomin house although she does not belong to the family. She is brave and fearless, impulsive yet friendly. Sometimes she is a bit grumpy, but never vicious. She is rather messy and has her own mind. Gladly she makes herself comfortable in the pocket of Snufkin. She wears her hair as a bun and usually a red dress.
Snufkin is Moomintroll's best friend and Little My’s half-brother. He is a little vagabond who loves freedom and fishing. Although he does not shy away from society he prefers to travel alone, most of all in the moonlight at night. He always wears a dark green hat and a worn coat.
Sniff is a weasel-like troll that lives with the Moomins. He is a bit clumsy and a little scared but has a sweet nature. Everything that sparkles awakens his desire. Sniff is water-shy and not always purposeful. You recognize him by his big ears and his long tail.
The cult of the Moomin cups
A veritable cult has evolved around the Moomin cups, which are manufactured by the Finnish company Arabia. The lovingly designed drinking vessels made of ceramic are now available in countless variations with a variety of Moomin motifs. If you want to get hold of one of the coveted Limited Editions, you need a good deal of luck. Collectibles are traded at the highest prices on the well-known auction portals.
Where you can experience the Moomins in Finland
If you want to walk in the footsteps of the Moomins on your next trip to Finland, you should plan a visit to the Moomin World (Muumimaailma). This delightfully located amusement park for the whole family is located in the picturesque town of Naantali near Turku. From June to August you can meet the Moomins in person, visit the Moomin house or attend theatrical performances. In February, the Moomin World will open its doors for a week for a special winter treat.
A must for all fans of the Moomins is the world's first Moomin Museum in Tampere. You can visit more than 2000 exhibits here including original drawings, showcases and various international elements. You should not miss this!
In meanwhile several Finnish cities you find a Moomin café. This café chain is specially designed for families with children. Accordingly, there are imaginatively designed play areas and all sorts of delicious specialties for all ages. The Moomin troll are of course omnipresent. In addition to several cafes in the capital Helsinki, you can also visit the Moomin café branches in Oulu and Rovaniemi.
The family business L'asessor, Finland's most popular scarf brand, also produces high-quality Moomin products. Do you want to win a stylish windproof Moomin umbrella? Just click on the Little Finland Facebook or Instagram page and tell us what your favorite Moomin figure is. You can participate until Sunday, 07.10.2018. The winner will be personally informed.
Text: René Schwarz
Photos: Visit Finland, Wikipedia, Fiskars Group, René Schwarz
About the author:
René Schwarz grew up half Finn and bilingual. The self-employed copywriter and author regularly travels to his second home country and loves to share his passion for Suomi with others. He has been doing this on his blog FinnTouch since the beginning of 2016, where you can expect numerous travel tips from Finland, interviews with Finnish artists and even personal stories. Have a look at www.finntouch.de!