A Bell for Ursli

Illustrated by Alois Carigiet; Selina Chönz

Out of print

Quick Look

A classic Swiss children's story. Ursli spends a scary night in the alpine mountains to find a big cowbell.

216 x 279 mm
Floris Books
Picture Books
colour illustrations
Age Range:
From 4 to 6 years
44 pages
Publication date:
27 Sep 2007


A Bell for Ursli is a classic Swiss children's story, with pictures by award-winning Swiss illustrator Alois Carigiet.

Ursli is a little boy who lives in the Swiss Alps. He must find a big cowbell so that he can lead the spring procession through his village, so he goes alone to his family's chalet high up in the mountains. There, he spends a lonely, scary night.

Generations of Swiss children have grown up with Ursli but this is the first time his adventures have been widely available in English.


'With striking full-page illustrations by the award-winning artist Alois Carigiet, the book is alive with Ursli's determined spirit.'
--Mel Tibbs, Juno Magazine, Autumn 2007

'The uncomplicated parallel between Ursli's physical journey and his struggle to recover his pride should appeal to young readers. So, too, should the description of a type of conflict courageously resolved in unfamiliar surroundings, which are drawn as both picturesque and charged with impending perils.'
-- Books for Keeps, March 2008

'As president of this Swiss Society and as a true Swiss, who grew up with this book … my heart jumped. Finally, all the children and adults in the UK can enjoy this book and get hold of it easily.'
--Regula Marsh-Hilfiker, Swiss Embassy

'For those of us who have enjoyed this book, it will now be available in English!'
--Newsletter of the New Helvetic Society, September 2007

'This is a moving story of courage and determination against physical odds. I like the illustrations. It should appeal to all young readers who hear it read to them, and to good early readers.'
--School Librarian Journal, Summer 2008


Alois Carigiet (1902-1985) was born in the Graubünden mountains in Switzerland. Alpine mountains became a central theme of his art, which included murals and graphic design as well as illustration. He is one of Switzerland's most popular painters and won numerous awards, including the New York Times Choice of Best Illustrated Children's Book of the Year 1953 and the coveted gold medal of the Hans Christian Andersen Award in 1966.

You can also visit the author's own website at http://www.carigiet.net

Selina Chönz (1910-2000) was a poet from the Engadine valley in the Swiss Graubünden mountains. She wrote the text for several Alois Carigiet books, including A Bell for Ursli, Florina and the Wild Bird, and The Snowstorm.

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