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  • Illustrator: Jaan Rõõmus
  • Hunt
  • 2021, 48 pp
  • ISBN: 9789949731985
  • storybook, memoires, non-fiction
  • Age: 8+
Rights sold: German, Finnish

Once upon a time, a girl was born in the Vändra sacristan’s house and named Lydia Emilie Florentine Jannsen. It was December 1843, to be exact. Lydia was the first child of Johann Voldemar Jannsen, a journalist and schoolmaster who founded the Estonian-language newspaper Postimees, and Juliana Emilie Koch, who raised the children and taught them German.

When Lydia was born, there was no united Estonia. There was the Estonian Governorate and the Livonian Governate, both ruled by the Russian Empire. People from many different nations lived there then, just as they do now, but the official languages were German and Russian. All her life, Lydia staunchly defended her people’s right to speak their language and practice their culture, and was one of the founders of the Estonian Song Festival.

Lydia is the story of a young Estonian woman who was born in Livonia, became a prolific writer who forged a cultural bridge with Finland, married a Latvian, and ultimately settled in Kronstadt.
Lydia exerpt

Lydia exerpt

Lydia exerpt

Lydia exerpt
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2021 Annual Children’s Literature Award of the Cultural Endowment of Estonia
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