The life of this man was full of contradictions, and fate made sharp turns several times. He was born in Russia in the Urals, but gained popularity in America. Until the age of 17 he had an angelic appearance, but then suddenly turned into an "ogre". He knew 14 languages, had an excellent education and dreamed of becoming a lawyer, but performed in the ring. The main thing that helped the famous wrestler not to lose faith in people was a great sense of humor.
The future Shrek was born on October 23, 1903. The family of a French engineer has lived in Russia for several years. Father worked on the railroad, mother taught foreign languages at school. According to the memoirs of Maurice, they often traveled, and the boy knew St. Petersburg well. Shortly before the revolution, his father died, and the small family, fleeing the riots, returned to France. I must say that the boy in childhood was distinguished by simply an angelic appearance. A cute child until the age of seventeen did not know any health problems, but then suddenly he began to notice that something was wrong with his body: his arms and legs began to grow, as if on their own, and his head, facial features changed in literally a few months. Doctors diagnosed him with acromegaly. This is a rather rare disease caused by a benign tumor on the pituitary gland, as a result of which a person's bones grow and thicken. After a few years, Maurice looked like a young troll.
Of course, such a "transformation" could not be painless for the psyche of a teenager. At first, the young man had a hard time going through strange and eerie changes. Many years later, he shared with reporters:
Despite the disease, the ogre man's intelligence was clearly above average. Even with such a peculiar appearance, he managed to enter the University of Toulouse at the Faculty of Law, and thanks to his mother, he knew several foreign languages from childhood. It is known that by the age of forty he spoke fluently in Russian, French, Bulgarian, English and Lithuanian, and there is evidence that by the end of his life he was fluent in 14 languages. He also played chess well, wrote poetry and stories. The young man dreamed of becoming a lawyer and could succeed in this profession, but the disease progressed. Gradually, the changes also affected the vocal cords: - told Tiye.
In fact, the talented young man in the French Navy did not march, but served as an engineer. Gradually, he came to terms with his non-standard appearance. All subsequent years he treated her with humor - for example, he posed in the paleontological museum next to the statue of a Neanderthal and most of all made fun of the resemblance, never offended seeing the increased attention of people. With an eerie appearance, this "ogre" was a kind giant in his soul, and all his acquaintances understood this perfectly.
After thirty years, Tiye managed to turn his shortcomings into advantages. In February 1937, in Singapore, he met the famous wrestler Karolis Pozhela. He quickly realized that a physically developed fighter with such data was simply doomed to success and persuaded Maurice to take up the fight. After training and the first fights in Europe, the new ring star moved to America and here, as predicted, he was a resounding success. Crowds of fans gathered for the battles of the "Ugly Ogre".The directors of this brutal show immediately made it invincible, and then changed the name to a more dramatic one - "French Angel". The audience sobbed with delight when Tiye emerged victorious from all fights for 19 months in a row.
Despite his wild popularity, Maurice Tillet was a very humble man and a devout Catholic. In 1947, at the Vatican, he even met personally with the Pope. Until today, this remains the only case in history; no wrestler has ever received an audience with the pontiff. The famous wrestler has many imitators. About ten "Angels" in the late 1940s fought in the rings of America: Russian, Czech, Canadian, Polish, gold, black and even "Lady Angel". But the inimitable Maurice Tillet himself gradually lost his shape and won fights (even staged ones) less and less often. Unfortunately, illness and an active career made themselves felt, and the French Angel lost his last fight in 1953. Exactly one year later, the famous wrestler died of a heart attack.
The cheerful and kind ogre Shrek, invented by the cartoonist William Steig, is similar to Maurice Tiye not only in appearance, but also in character. Journalists, who noticed an incredible coincidence, tried to find out if it was by chance, but received a sharp rebuff from the Dreamworks studio - the creators of the popular cartoon refuse to discuss this topic and give comments. In fact, the similarities are so striking that official confirmation, in principle, is not required.
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