Jip and Janneke
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Jip and Janneke (Dutch: Jip en Janneke) is a series of children's books in the Netherlands, written by Annie M.G. Schmidt and illustrated by Fiep Westendorp. The series is known for its simplicity and wit.
The series was originally written for Het Parool. Between 13 September 1952 and 7 September 1957 a weekly episode of no more than 250 words was published. Each episode is an independent story in itself. The stories were later collected and published as books.
The series has been translated into a number of languages, including Latin (called Jippus et Jannica) and Chinese (called Yǐyǐhéyāyā, simplified Chinese: 乙乙和丫丫). Three English versions have been published. Mick and Mandy, an adaptation with the original illustrations, and Bob and Jilly, translations with new illustrations, are no longer in print. In 2008 the Dutch publisher, Querido, published a new translation by David Colmer of the first book of the series, with the original illustrations, entitled Jip and Janneke.
The series has become something of a popular icon of childhood and has inspired a large amount of merchandise. One of the best known of these is Jip and Janneke Wine, which is a non-alcoholic carbonated lemonade popular at children's parties and for new year celebrations.
In recent years, Jip and Janneke has become part of an expression. Jip and Janneke language (Dutch: jip-en-janneketaal) has come to mean "simple language", Layman's terms or Plain English. It is most often used in the context of politics, when politicians think they need to express their ideas in Jip and Janneke language in order to make the people understand what they are talking about.
In February 2009 it was announced that The Walt Disney Company has picked up the rights to create a children's cartoon based on Jip & Janneke. The cartoon would be 5 minutes for each episode and will air on Disney Channel.
Lorelai Gilmore, from the TV show Gilmore Girls, is seen wearing a Jip en Janneke t-shirt during the first episode of the show's fourth season - she and her daughter Rory had just returned from their backpacking trip from Europe.
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