Dick Bruna (1927-2017)

17th February 2017

The designer of the classic Dutch James Bond paperback novels has died aged 89

MI6 logo By MI6 Staff
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Dutch author, artist, illustrator and graphic designer Dick Bruna has died aged 89.

Most famous for his creation Miffy, a small rabbit cartoon character, Bruna was also responsible for the design of Ian Fleming's James Bond paperback novels published in the Netherlands.

Bruna was born on August 23, 1927, in Utrecht, Netherlands. His father, A.W. Bruna, ran a successful publishing company with his brother. It was planned for Dick to get into the same business and eventually take over, but he wanted to be an artist. His 'Nijntje' (Miffy) creation came about in 1955 on a family holiday when he saw a little rabbit hopping around and tried to draw it to entertain his infant son. He went on to write 120 children's books selling over 80 million copies.

Dick Bruna

Over the course of his career, he created over 2,000 book covers and 100 posters for his family business, A.W. Bruna & Zoon. The James Bond novels fell under the Zwarte Beertjes (English: little black bears) series of books that also included The Saint, Simenon, and Shakespeare.

He retired in 2014 and announced he would not be selling the rights to his most famous work 'Miffy'. Bruna died in his sleep in Utrecht on 16 February 2017 at the age of 89.

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