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Edgar Valter (21 September 1929, Tallinn – 4 March 2006, Tartu) was an Estonian writer and illustrator of children's books, with over 250 books to his name, through 55 years of activity (1950–2005).[1] His most famous work is Pokuraamat (The Poku Book).

Edgar Valter
Edgar Valter.jpg
Born(1929-09-21)21 September 1929
Tallinn, Estonia
Died4 March 2006(2006-03-04) (aged 76)
GenreChildren's books
Notable awardsMeie Mats



Edgar Valter was born on 21 September 1929, in Tallinn, the fourth child of a family of eight kids. He completed middle-school in 1945, but didn't graduate from Secondary School.

He began working as a freelance artist in 1950, eventually illustrating some of the most famous Estonian children literature characters, including the Krõll, the Naksitrallid, the Sipsik, and the Kunksmoor. Edgar Valter illustrated over 250 books, most of them being books for children. His caricatures were published by many journals and newspapers. Edgar Valter worked for the magazines Hea Laps (a good kid), Täheke (a star), Pioneer, and Pikker (a humor and satire magazine published during soviet times).

Edgar Valter lived his last 15 years in the Pöörismäe farm, located at the Urvaste rural municipality of the Võrumaa County. He died on March 4, 2006. His remains were cremated and buried on May 17, 2006 at Metsakalmistu in Tallinn.

The Poku Book and PokusEdit

The Pokuhall in Pokuland, Urvaste Parish, Võru County.

First published in 1994, Pokuraamat (The Poku Book) tells the tale of Pokus. A poku is a grass mound that grows in south-eastern Estonian bogs. In the book, Valter interprets pokus as animated childlike creatures, the grass actually being their golden head hair, which grows down to their feet. Its central theme is emphasizing the need to respect and to live in harmony with nature.

Pokuraamat was the first book that was both written and illustrated by Edgar Valter. In 1996, the book won the prestigious Nukits competition award for best children book of the year. Edgar Valter wrote two subsequent Poku-related books after that: Pokuaabits (poku alphabet) (2002) and Pokulood (poku nature) (2004).


In 1991, Edgar Valter was awarded the Meie Mats.[2]

Selected bibliographyEdit

  • Jahikoera memuaarid (1974; 2004)
  • Pokuraamat (1994; 2001; 2005)
  • Ahaa, kummitab (1995)
  • Kassike ja kakuke (1995)
  • Lugu lahkest lohe Justusest ja printses Miniminnist (1995)
  • Kullast vilepill (1996)
  • Isand Tuutu ettevõtmised (1997)
  • Iika (1998)
  • Pintselsabad (1998)
  • Metsa pühapäev (1999)
  • Kuidas õppida vaatama? (2000)
  • Ho-ho-hoo! (2002)
  • Pokuaabits (2002)
  • Natuke naljakad pildid (2003)
  • Pokulood (2004)
  • Ikka veel kummitab (2005)
  • Maalid 1983–2005 (2007). Selected paintings.
  • Karikatuurid läbi aegade (2011). Caricatures through time.
  • Lasteraamatute illustratsioonid 1948–2005 (2014). Children book illustrations.


  1. ^ "Edgar Valter". Estonian Children's Literature Centre. Retrieved August 9, 2017.
  2. ^ Maaleht 18 January 2001: Kellest saab Meie Mats 2001?[permanent dead link] by Lembit Sibul of Pikker

External linksEdit