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Joseph Rudyard Kipling (30 December 1865 – 18 January 1936) was an English poet, short-story writer, and novelist chiefly remembered for his celebration of British imperialism, tales and poems of British soldiers in India, and his tales for children. Rudyard Kipling by E.O. Hoppé (1912)
He was born in Bombay, in the Bombay Presidency of British India, and was taken by his family to England when he was five years old. Malabar Point, Bombay, 1865 Kipling's India: map of British India
Kipling is best known for his works of fiction, including The Jungle Book (a collection of stories which includes "Rikki-Tikki-Tavi"), Just So Stories (1902) (1894), Kim (1901) (a tale of adventure), many short stories, including "The Man Who Would Be King" (1888); and his poems, including Mandalay (1890), Gunga Din (1890), The White Man's Burden (1899) and If— (1910). Embossed cover from the original edition of The Jungle Book based on art by John Lockwood Kipling Rikki-Tikki-Tavi book cover 1st edition (publ. Macmillan & Co.)
He is regarded as a major "innovator in the art of the short story"; his children's books are enduring classics of children's literature; and his best works are said to exhibit "a versatile and luminous narrative gift". The white man's burden-from an 1899 edition of Life Magazine The white man's burden – The Journal, Detroit, 1898.
In 1907 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature, making him the first English-language writer to receive the prize, and to date he remains its youngest recipient. Among other honours, he was sounded out for the British Poet Laureateship and on several occasions for a knighthood, all of which he declined. Kipling in his study, 1895
His literary career began with Departmental Ditties (1886), but subsequently he became chiefly known as a writer of short stories. A prolific writer, he achieved fame quickly. Kipling photographed by Bourne & Shepherd, ca. 1892
Kipling was the poet of the British Empire and its yeoman, the common soldier, whom he glorified in many of his works, in particular Plain Tales from the Hills (1888) and Soldiers Three (1888), collections of short stories with roughly and affectionately drawn soldier portraits. Kipling in the United States (date unknown).
His Barrack Room Ballads (1892) were written for, as much as about, the common soldier. In 1894 appeared his Jungle Book, which became a children's classic all over the world. Gilt title of the 1890 first American edition of Departmental Ditties and Barrack Room Ballads, which contained Mandalay and Gunga Din The Jungle Book
During the First World War Kipling wrote some propaganda books. His collected poems appeared in 1933. Kipling in South Africa Covers of two of Kipling's books from 1919 (l) and 1930 (r)
Kipling was the recipient of many honorary degrees and other awards. In 1926 he received the Gold Medal of the Royal Society of Literature, which only Scott, Meredith, and Hardy had been awarded before him. Photograph of General Sir Ian Hamilton, commander of the ill-fated Mediterranean Expeditionary Force in the Battle of Gallipoli in the First World War, at Rudyard Kipling's funeral in 1936. Hamilton was Kipling's close friend.