Quasimodo, Salvatore

born Aug. 20, 1901, Modica, Italy
died June 14, 1968, Naples

Italian poet, critic, and translator.

He spent 10 years as an engineer for the Italian government while writing poetry in his spare time. He gradually became a leader of Hermeticism after the publication of his first poetry collection, Waters and Land (1930). After World War II his social convictions shaped his work, beginning with Day After Day (1947). He published an astonishing range of translations, edited anthologies, and wrote essays, including those in The Poet and the Politician (1960). He received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1959.

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▪ Italian poet
born Aug. 20, 1901, Modica, Italy
died June 14, 1968, Naples
 Italian poet, critic, and translator. Originally a leader of the Hermetic poets, he became, after World War II, a powerful poet commenting on modern social issues. He received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1959.

      Quasimodo was born in Sicily and was the son of a railroad employee. He was first educated near Syracuse and at Messina, studied engineering and mathematics at Palermo, and then left for the north, graduating as an engineer in Rome. He had liked to write even as a child, and, though he spent the next 10 years as an engineer for the Italian government, he wrote poetry in his spare time.

      Quasimodo's first poems appeared in the Florentine periodical Solaria. Initially he was a disciple of the Hermetic poets Giuseppe Ungaretti and Eugenio Montale. After the publication of his first poetry collection, Acque e terre (1930; “Waters and Land”), Quasimodo gradually became a leader of the Hermetic poets. After 1935 he abandoned engineering to teach Italian literature at a conservatory in Milan. Quasimodo's later poetry collections—Oboe sommerso (1932; “Sunken Oboe”), Odore di eucalyptus (1933; “Scent of Eucalyptus”), and Erato e Apollion (1936)—have the dry, sophisticated style and abstruse symbolism of Hermeticism but include many poems that veer away from personal preoccupations to contemporary issues. With two final collections, Poesie (1938) and Ed è subito sera (1942; “And Suddenly It's Evening”), his Hermetic period came to a close.

      After the war Quasimodo's social convictions shaped his work from the publication of Giorno dopo giorno (1947; “Day After Day”) until his death. Many of his poems recalled the injustices of the fascist regime, the horrors of the war, and Italian guilt. Later poems in the same vein, simple in language, exhibit a concrete and immediate imagery. Later volumes include La terra impareggiabile (1958; The Incomparable Earth)—with an inscription from Aeschylus, “I say that the dead slay the living”—Tutte le poesie (1960), and Dare e avere (1966; To Give and To Have and Other Poems).

      Between the mid-1930s and his death, Quasimodo published an astonishing range of translations, including a group of Lirici greci (1940); plays of the Greek tragic playwrights Aeschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides (collected in Tragici greci, 1963); poems of the Latin poets Catullus, Ovid, and Virgil; six plays of William Shakespeare; Molière's Tartuffe; and the poetry of the 20th-century poets E.E. Cummings (United States) and Pablo Neruda (Chile). He edited two anthologies of Italian poetry and wrote many significant critical essays, collected in Il poeta e il politico e altri saggi (1960; The Poet and the Politician and Other Essays) and Scritti sul teatro (1961), a collection of drama reviews.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Quasimodo, Salvatore — (1901–1968)    Born in one of Italy’s southernmost cities, Ragusa (Sicily), Quasimodo was brought up in a railwayman’s family and was given a technical education. He attended the University of Rome (La Sapienza) in 1921, initially to study… …   Historical Dictionary of modern Italy

  • Quasimodo, Salvatore — ► (1901 68) Poeta italiano, traductor y ensayista. Obras: Día tras día (1947) y La vida no es sueño (1949), entre otras. Fue premio Nobel de Literatura en 1959. * * * (20 ago. 1901, Modica, Italia–14 jun. 1968, Nápoles). Poeta, crítico y… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Quasimodo,Salvatore — Qua·si·mo·do (kwä zē mōʹdō), Salvatore. 1901 1968. Italian poet whose early nostalgic works contrast with his later socially concerned poetry. He won the 1959 Nobel Prize for literature. * * * …   Universalium

  • Quasimodo, Salvatore — (Modica, Ragusa 1901 Napoli 1968) poeta, protagonista assoluto del Novecento ; traduttore; fondatore con Salvatore Pugliatti del “Nuovo Giornale Letterario”; premio Nobel 1959. collab./opere: “Solaria”, “Il Dramma”, “Tempo”, “Pirelli” …   Dizionario biografico elementare del Novecento letterario italiano

  • Quasimodo — [ kazimɔdo ] n. f. • XIIIe; des mots lat. quasi modo par lesquels commence l introït de la messe de ce dimanche ♦ Liturg. Dimanche de l octave de Pâques. La Quasimodo ou (plus cour.) le dimanche de Quasimodo. ● Quasimodo nom féminin singulier (de …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Quasimodo — Quasimodo,   Salvatore, italienischer Lyriker, Essayist und Übersetzer, * Modica 20. 8. 1901, ✝ Neapel 14. 6. 1968; war u. a. Theaterkritiker und Mitarbeiter zahlreicher Zeitungen, hatte Verbindung zur Florentiner Literaturzeitschrift »Solaria«,… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Quasimodo — Quasimodo, Salvatore ► LITERATURA Personaje de la novela de Victor Hugo, Nuestra Señora de París …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Salvatore Quasimodo — Infobox Writer name = Salvatore Quasimodo awards = awd|Nobel Prize in Literature|1959 birthdate = birth date|1901|8|20|df=y birthplace = Modica, Sicily deathdate = death date and age|1968|6|14|1901|8|20|df=y deathplace = Naples, Italy occupation …   Wikipedia

  • Salvatore Quasimodo — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Quasimodo. Salvatore Quasimodo (né le 20 août 1901 à Modica, dans la Province de Raguse, en Sicile mort le 14 juin 1968 à Naples) est un écrivain et poète italien du XXe siècle …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Salvatore — /sal veuh tawr , tohr /; It. /sahl vah taw rdde/, n. a male given name. * * * (as used in expressions) Salvatore Lucania later Charles Luciano Quasimodo Salvatore Viganò Salvatore Salvatore Guaragna * * * …   Universalium

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