Svanslös Crosswalk

Svanslös Crosswalk, showing an unusual “cat crossing” sign in the town of Uppsala, Sweden:

The road signs in front of Carolina Rediviva Library in Uppsala have something unusual: cats. On closer look, you might notice the adult cat leading kittens has no tail. He isn’t just an ordinary bobtail cat. He’s Pelle Svanslös (“Peter No-Tail” in English), a popular character from a children’s book series with the same name.

The Pelle Svanslös series—there are 12 books in total—was written by Gösta Knutsson between 1939 and 1972. As his name suggests, Pelle has no tail. A rat bit his tail off when he was a kitten. But despite this mean mishap, Pelle grows into a kind-hearted young cat. He has been loved by many Swedish children for decades.

Pelle and his feline friends live in Uppsala, Sweden, where the author also lived for many years of his life. To mark the cat’s popularity, Uppsala added some features related to the children’s literature star around the city, such as a statue, a peep-hole (his residence), and these crossing signs.

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