The famous Croatian apprentice Lapitch has turned his first hundred years. Croatian Post celebrates his birthday by issuing a new postage stamp.
Lapitch is the main character of children's novel "Lapitch the Little Shoemaker" by the most famous Croatian woman writer Ivana Brlic Mazuranic (1874 - 1938). She was a Nobel Prize candidate and was nicknamed Croatian Andersen.
The apprentice Lapitch is a shoemaker's apprentice, an orphan delivered to bad tempers of his master Mrkonja and quite kindness of his wife. When the master's injustice becomes too much to bear, Lapitch runs away into the world followed by the dog Bundas. In several short and endless days, in the world where remoteness was not difficult to reach - already at the outskirts of the town - Lapitch meets many good and bad people and with his humanity affects their fates always for better. On his way he meets a girl from circus, Gita and her parrot. After numerous adventures it is discovered that Gita is in fact Marica - a long time ago kidnapped daughter of the master Mrkonja.
Transformed by gratitude and happiness into another kind of person, Mrkonja will offer home to both, Marica and Lapitch. And, in far future Lapitch and Gita - as he will always call her - will found their own family and be good parents to their children and little apprentices.
To today's generations who tremble over destinies of various virtual heroes it is not difficult to grasp that the history consists of real and fictional beings. To the latter in Croatia belongs also the history of the apprentice Lapitch. Already for hundred years, from the moment he was created by Ivana Brlic Mazuranic, he has been participating in growing up of children and keeping the magic of childhood in souls of grownups. The shoemaker's apprentice, the boy Lapitch managed to survive the whole century in which the world has undergone remarkable changes.