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David el gnomo
David el Gnomo.jpg
Title screen of original David el Gnomo opening
Also known as The World of David the Gnome
David the Gnome
Genre animation, children's
Created by Claudio Biern Boyd, BRB Internacional
Directed by Luis Ballester
Narrated by Teófilo Martínez
Country of origin  Spain
Language(s) Spanish English German
No. of series 2
No. of episodes 26
Executive producer(s) Claudio Biern Boyd
Producer(s) Micheline Charest
Ronald A. Weinberg
Running time 23 minutes
Original channel TVE
Original run 19851985
Followed by Wisdom of the Gnomes
The Great Adventure of the Gnomes
The Gnomes in the Snow
The Fantastic Adventures of the Gnomes
The New World of the Gnomes

The World of David the Gnome, originally titled David el Gnomo (also known as David, the Gnome), is a Spanish animated television series based on the children's books The Gnomes and The Secret Book of Gnomes, by the Dutch author Wil Huygen and illustrator Rien Poortvliet.[1] The program was originally created in Spain by BRB Internacional (who were also responsible for the Dogtanian and the Three Muskehounds franchise) with animation by Canadian studio Cinar (now Cookie Jar Entertainment), titled David el Gnomo, and retains a sense of the lush illustrations of the original books. Twenty-six episodes were produced. There was also a spin-off series entitled Wisdom of the Gnomes.

In the US dub, The World of David the Gnome was narrated by Christopher Plummer, of The Sound of Music and The Insider fame. For United States viewers, the voice of David the Gnome was redubbed with the voice of Tom Bosley, and features an original opening theme song which is repeated in the end credits (mostly instrumental except for the finale).

David the Gnome came to United States television in 1987, running weekdays on the Nickelodeon cable channel, and was part of the fledgling Nick Jr. lineup when that was created shortly thereafter until 1995. It was also broadcast on The Learning Channel from September 30, 1996 until late 1998. The series is still frequently shown on weekday mornings on Irish channel RTÉ Two as of 2006. In Australia, it has aired on ABC, as well as the Australian branch of Nickelodeon, again as part of the Nick Jr. lineup.



The series presents the gnomes as a kind species, of 15 centimeters (6 inches) of height, and between 250 and 300 grams (8 and 10 ounces) of weight depending on gnome body mass. According to their habitat, different types of gnomes are distinguished: the ones of the forest, the ones of the garden, the ones of the farm, the ones of the house, the ones of the dunes, those of Siberia, and nomadic "gypsy" gnomes (commonly looked down upon by other gnomes.) A gnome's lifespan is exactly 400 years. However, there are a few cases of gnomes living past 400 years. One example is a couple in the Balkans living 550 years.

They live in pairs in comfortable caves or holes under trees, in the company of a pair of mice and a cricket. Their diet is vegetarian. They are helped by the animals of the forest when traveling long distances or when they need to arrive quickly at a specific location. Gnomes work in various ways to repair the damage inevitably caused by humans. They also have the power of telepathy and mind control.

Their main enemies are the trolls, malevolent and clumsy creatures who always make trouble for the other inhabitants of the forest, as well as gnome poachers.


  • David – a gnome of the forest. David is 399 years old, making him the oldest gnome around (since no gnome lives more than 400 years), although he is in good health. David is a doctor, and he uses his knowledge of many fields, such as hypnosis and acupuncture, to heal his patients, usually animals, such as his faithful friend Swift the fox, or other gnomes. David also befriends a bird that, when he whistles, immediately arrives to quickly transport him to wherever necessary. For longer trips, he sometimes travels in a basket attached to the neck of the bird. Voice by Tom Bosley.
  • Lisa – David's wife and companion and is the same age as he. Together they have two children, Lily and Harold. David's wife is in charge of the household, although she occasionally accompanies him and helps him in his diverse adventures. Voiced by Jane Woods.
  • Swift – David's best friend, a fox named Swift, lives in the forest and is always available to transport David to wherever he is required. He is characterized by his speed. Voiced by Vlasta Vrana.
  • The Trolls – In the series there are four trolls who constantly try to bother the gnomes. Their names are Pit, Pat and Pot, in addition to Holler, who is the only one of the four able to think. They have some supernatural powers, and are capable of utilizing magical spells too powerful for Gnome magic to break. However, in addition to their extreme lack of wit, they also have another severe weakness: direct exposure to sunlight turns them into stone. Holler was voiced by A.J. Henderson, Pit was voiced by Marc Denis, Pat was voiced by Rob Roy, and Pot was voiced by Adrian Knight.
  • Susan – David and Lisa's granddaughter. Voiced by Barbara Pogenmiller.
  • King – Voiced by Richard Dumont


David the Gnome ran for twenty-six episodes, each approximately 23 minutes in length.


The series does much to encourage children to treat the environment with respect. The first episode begins with real images of contamination and destruction, contrasted later with the anti-materialism and pacifism of the gnomes.

During the series, different animals are shown and information is given on their behavior and customs, which is usually well documented. The same thing happens with the medical situations David is faced with.

A lesson in the initial credits of each episode reminds us that nobody is better by being bigger.


After the success of the initial series, the same producers created a spin-off called Wisdom of the Gnomes (1987). In this series, the protagonist is a gnome called Klaus, a judge who travels with his assistant Dani to solve disputes.

Other sequels, both in serial and movie form, were The Great Adventure of the Gnomes (1995), The Gnomes in the Snow (1999) and The Fantastic Adventures of the Gnomes (2000).

The series was also preceded by the popular television movie, Gnomes in 1980, which was based on the same series of books as The World of David the Gnome.


A complete series DVD set was released in the U.K. in 2006 by Revelation Films. It is unclear if or when it will see a DVD release in other regions.


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