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Last update:
2009, January 15

(Humulesti, 1839 - Iasi, 1889)

"I am born at March 1 1837 in Humulesti village, Neamt county, from Romanian parents: Stefan of Petrea the shoemaker and his wife Smaranda, born David Creanga, from Pipirig village, Neamt county..."

The date written by Creanga's hand in Fragment de biografie (Biopraphy Fragment) and accepted by many literary historians is contested by other researchers, wich afirm that the writer was born, on June 10 1839, as the only authentic document: a register of new-borns from Humulesti, descovered and published by Gh. Ungureanu, archievist from Iasi.

In the paesant house from Humulesti, from where the ruin of Neamt Castle are seen, in the family of Stefan and Smaranda were born 8 children: ION, Zahei, Maria, Ecaterina, Ileana, Teodor, Vasile and Petre. The last three die as children. Ecaterina dies in 1893, and Zahei, Maria and Ileana will live till 1919.
1846-1853 Smart and nasty, as he describe himself later on in Amintiri din copilarie (Memories from childhood), Nica goes to the church school, Vasile of Iloaiei being his teacher, him who will be taken to army by force. The school is in a little chamber made by the paesants at the stimulus of the vicar Ion Humulescu. The permanent visitors arrived today in Humulesti are seeing not only the museum from the little house, but also the church and the way to Ozana where Ionica have several times bathed.
Next, his mother Smaranda will send him to her father David Creanga. He will take Nica, together with his younger son Dumitru, on Bistrita valley, to Brosteni, where he will learn with N. Nanu as teacher, till the amusing episode with the scab and Irinuca's goats.
1853-1854 Begins the Princely school from Tg. Neamt, over Ozana river, his teacher is the priest Isaia Teodorescu (the hero from Popa Duhu). In the school registers he is written a Stefanescu Ion.
1854, autumn His mother Smaranda wants to make him priest, and he will go to the "priests factory": "The Catechist school" from Falticeni, director N. Conta (the uncle of the philosopher Vasile Conta).
Here he is no longer Nica of Stefan of Petre, but Ion Creanga, name kept all his life.
1855-1858 The school from Falticeni was abolished (caricatured copiously in Amintiri...), so Creanga goes to Iasi, after his mother insistences, who want him priest by all means. He is pupil at Theological seminary "Veniamin Costachi" from Socola. He will get at al the subjects "good", "very good" and "eminent". Stays in the boarding school which is free. Finishes the inferior course of the seminary.
1859 Dies his father, far away from Humulesti, on the Facauti estate (his grave is in Prigoreni, near Tg. Frumos, locality related to Neculce).
When the Union from Iasi was "cooked", Creanga is a convinced citizen of Iasi, even he did not want to leave Humulesti. He will write Mos Ion Roata si Unirea and Mos Ion Roata si Cuza Voda.
He marries Ileana, the daughter of the priest Ioan Grigoriu from the church "40 de Sfinti" from Iasi. At December 26 he is ordained deacon at the "Sfânta Treime" church.
1864-1865 He is a very good student at the Vasilian preparative school from Trei Ierarhi (director and teacher is Titu Maiorescu, younger than Creanga). Maiorescu appreciates him and names him as teacher at the primary school no. 1 from Iasi. He finishes the school on the first place. At June 10, 1965 he will become teacher, with graduation certificate. He is 28 years old, is married, and has a son, Constantin (born on December 19, 1860).
Dies his mother Smaranda, ill of epilepsy (he will suffer from the same illness).
1859-1872 For 12 year is a servant of the church (deacon at several churches from Iasi). At October 10, 1972 he is excluded definitively from the clergy. His wife leaves him (for a deacon is not allowed to divorce), he was shooting in the crows that maked dirty the Golia church roof (he was living in the house from the church yard, house that is still there) and have cut his hair like a civilian. Only in 1993, after 122 years, a reparatory decision was made post-mostem: Creanga was reincluded in the clergy as deacon.
1864-1889 For 25 years, Creanga was teacher, beeing and excellent educator, even that he was exclude from the educational system between 1872-1874. He is author of 4 school manuals, written together with other teachers.
1873 After a long law suit, the tribunal gives the divorce decision and Creanga wins and gets in custody their child. Constantin was 12 years old and his carrying father search for a suitable house. So they move to Ticau suburb in the bojdeuca ("mud house" - the writer call it like that). As house wife he will call Tinca Vartic, with whom he will live all his life, without marrying her.
1875 A decisive moment in his life is when he meets Mihail Eminescu, then school reviser in Iasi and Vaslui. The poet discovers Creanga's unprecedented talent of story teller. They become friends for ever and are spending their time together in Bolta Rece pub or other inns from Iasi.
Is the most beautiful frienship from Romanian literature. Eminescu convinces Creanga to write and introduces him in Junimea literary club. He reads the story Soacra cu trei nurori (published in 1875, October 1, in Convorbiri literare). The manuals author become, at 36 years old, a writer, with the help of his great friend, who have had lived for a while in the house from Ticau, tasting Tinca's very good food. It was between 1876-1877, before Eminescu leaves for Bucharest.
1875-1883 With the help onfthe poet, who reads and corrects his manuscripts, are composed his brilliant literary works, which charm all generations of Romanian readers (the foreign one to by the translations).
Now is the time of his masterpieces; now is the time of Eminescu's masterpieces too. The cruel destiny have made that in 1883 both get sick and to write no more something important, after this year. After Soacra cu trei nurori, Creanga publishes in Convorbiri literare: Punguta cu doi bani, Danila Prepeleac, Povestea porcului, Mos Nechifor Cotcariul, Povestea lui Harap-Alb, Fata babei si fata mosneagului, Ivan Turbinca, Poveste unui om lenes, Amintiri din copilarie (primele trei parti, a patra fiind postuma), Popa Duhu, Cinci pâni. He writes also now, Mos Ion Roata and Mos Ion Roata si Voda Cuza, and are published in other publications.
1883-1889 In the same period as Eminescu, our great story teller is ill and writes very little. His epilepsy crisis bring his six years of sufference. When he reads in the press that Eminescu is ill he is very desperate. Even he fall in class, in front of his pupils, having many sick leaves. He goes to Slanic Moldova for treatement.
1889, June 15 Creanga knows, also from newspapers, that "brother Mihai" died Bucharest, cries like a child.
After a few weeks, he knows that - at the begining of August - the poor Veronica Micle, Eminescu's beloved friend, who have had come to the house of Ticau sometimes, have poisoned herself at Varatec Monastery.
1889, December 31 The kids are all over Iasi to go through streets on New Year's Eve reciting congratulation verse. Cheerfull Creanga goes down town. Eats some donuts. Together with the teacher Draghici drinks some brandy. His friend accompanies him almost to his house and wishes him "Happy New Year!". He receives the cheering kids, remembering his childhood in Humulesti. That very night he dies. His friend put him into a coffin but they can not take it out from the house. The coffin - too big, the doors - too narrow. How to get out? The wall was demolished and he was taken to Eternitatea cemetery, where he was burried on January 2, 1890.