Tarjei Vesaas

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Tarjei Vesaas

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Tarjei Vesaas (1967)
Born(1897-08-20)August 20, 1897
Vinje, Telemark, Norway
Died March 15, 1970(1970-03-15) (aged 72)
Oslo, Norway
Language Nynorsk
Nationality Norwegian
Notable awards Gyldendals legat (1943)
Doblougprisen (1957)
Spouse Halldis Moren Vesaas
Midtbo in Vinje, site of the home of novelist Tarjei Vesaas and poet Halldis Moren Vesaas Midtbo3.JPG
Midtbø in Vinje, site of the home of novelist Tarjei Vesaas and poet Halldis Moren Vesaas

Tarjei Vesaas (20 August 1897 – 15 March 1970) was a Norwegian poet and novelist. Vesaas is widely considered to be one of Norway's greatest writers of the twentieth century and perhaps its most important since World War II. [1]

World War II 1939–1945 global war

World War II, also known as the Second World War, was a global war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. The vast majority of the world's countries—including all the great powers—eventually formed two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. A state of total war emerged, directly involving more than 100 million people from over 30 countries. The major participants threw their entire economic, industrial, and scientific capabilities behind the war effort, blurring the distinction between civilian and military resources. World War II was the deadliest conflict in human history, marked by 50 to 85 million fatalities, most of whom were civilians in the Soviet Union and China. It included massacres, the genocide of the Holocaust, strategic bombing, premeditated death from starvation and disease, and the only use of nuclear weapons in war.



Vesaas was born in Vinje, Telemark, Norway. He was the oldest of three sons. He was guilt-ridden by his refusal to take over the family farm, and this guilt permeates much of his authorship. He spent much of his youth in solitude, seeking comfort and solace in nature. The destruction he witnessed after World War I also made a deep impression on him. He married the writer Halldis Moren Vesaas and moved to Midtbø in his home district of Vinje in 1934. [2] [3]

Vinje Municipality in Telemark, Norway

Vinje is a municipality in Telemark county, Norway. It is part of the traditional region of Vest-Telemark. The administrative center of the municipality is the village of Åmot.

Telemark County in Norway

Telemark[²teːləmɑrk](listen) is a traditional region and county in Norway, bordering Vestfold, Buskerud, Hordaland, Rogaland and Aust-Agder. The name means the "mark of the thelir", the ancient North Germanic tribe that inhabited what is now known as Upper Telemark in the Migration Period and the Viking Age. Historically the name Telemark only referred to Upper Telemark, while the coastal areas of the modern county were considered separate regions. The modern county was established as the fief Bratsberg in the late Middle Ages, during Norway's union with Denmark. With the introduction of absolute monarchy in 1662 it became a county, and it was renamed Telemark in 1919. The county administration is in the port town Skien, which was in the early modern period Norway's most important city, ahead of Christiania.

Halldis Moren Vesaas Norwegian writer

Halldis Moren Vesaas was a Norwegian poet, translator and writer of children's books. She established herself as one of the leading Norwegian writers of her generation.

His authorship covers almost 50 years, from 1923 to 1970. Written in Nynorsk, his work is characterized by simple, terse, and symbolic prose. His stories are often about simple rural people that undergo a severe psychological drama and who according to critics are described with immense psychological insight. Commonly dealing with themes such as death, guilt, angst, and other deep and intractable human emotions, the Norwegian natural landscape is a prevalent feature in his works. His debut was in 1923 with Children of Humans (Menneskebonn), but he had his breakthrough in 1934 with The Great Cycle (Det store spelet). His mastery of the nynorsk language, landsmål (see Norwegian language), has contributed to its acceptance as a medium of world class literature. [4]

Nynorsk is one of the two written standards of the Norwegian language, the other being Bokmål. Nynorsk was established in 1929 as one of two state sanctioned fusions of Ivar Aasen's standard Norwegian language (Landsmål) with the Dano-Norwegian written language (Riksmål), the other such fusion being called Bokmål. Nynorsk is a variation which is closer to Landsmål, whereas Bokmål is closer to Riksmål.

Death permanent cessation of vital functions

Death is the permanent cessation of all biological functions that sustain a living organism. Phenomena which commonly bring about death include aging, predation, malnutrition, disease, suicide, homicide, starvation, dehydration, and accidents or major trauma resulting in terminal injury. In most cases, bodies of living organisms begin to decompose shortly after death.

Guilt (emotion) cognitive or an emotional experience

Guilt is a cognitive or an emotional experience that occurs when a person believes or realizes—accurately or not—that they have compromised their own standards of conduct or have violated a universal moral standard and bear significant responsibility for that violation. Guilt is closely related to the concept of remorse.

A prolific author, he won a number of awards, including the Gyldendal's Endowment in 1943 and Dobloug Prize in 1957. He was awarded the Nordic Council's Literature Prize in 1963 for his novel The Ice Palace and the Venice Prize in 1953 for The Winds. He was mentioned as being considered for the Nobel Prize for Literature on three separate occasions (1964, 1968 and 1969). [5]

Gyldendal's Endowment was a literature prize which was awarded in the period 1934–1995 by the Norwegian publisher Gyldendal Norsk Forlag. The prize was awarded to significant authors, regardless of which publisher the author was associated with. The basic capital of the legacies came from the release of Bjørnson's collective works in 1932.

The Dobloug Prize is a literature prize awarded for Swedish and Norwegian fiction. The prize is named after Norwegian businessman and philanthropist Birger Dobloug (1881–1944) pursuant to his bequest. The prize sum is 4 * 150,000 Swedish crowns (2011). The Dobloug Prize is awarded annually by the Swedish Academy.

The Nordic Council Literature Prize is awarded for a work of literature written in one of the languages of the Nordic countries, that meets "high literary and artistic standards". Established in 1962, the prize is awarded every year, and is worth 350,000 Danish kroner (2008). Eligible works are typically novels, plays, collections of poetry, short stories or essays, or other works that were published for the first time during the last four years, or in the case of works written in Danish, Norwegian, or Swedish, within the last two years. The prize is one of the most prestigious awards that Nordic authors can win.

The most famous of his works are The Ice Palace (Is-slottet), a story of two girls who build a profoundly strong relationship, and The Birds (Fuglane), a story of an adult of a simple childish mind, which through his tenderhearted empathy and imagination bears the role of a seer or writer. His novels have been translated into 28 languages. Several of his books have been translated into English – many of them published by Peter Owen Publishers– among them Spring Night , The Birds,Through Naked Branches, and The Ice Palace. [6]

The Ice Palace is a novel by the Norwegian author Tarjei Vesaas, first published in 1963. The original novel is written in nynorsk and considered a classic of Norwegian literature. It has been translated to English by Peter Owen Publishers, London, and is scheduled for reissue with them in Christmas of 2017 in their Cased Classics series. Vesaas received The Nordic Council's Literature Prize for the novel in 1964.

The Birds, original Nynorsk title Fuglane, is a novel by Norwegian author Tarjei Vesaas. It was first released in 1957, and has been translated into several languages, including English.

Peter Owen Publishers is a family-run London-based independent publisher based in London, England. It was founded in 1951.


The Melsom Prize is a Norwegian literary award. It is given annually to a writer or translator who writes in Nynorsk, for a work published during the preceding year. The prize was established in 1922 by the shipowner Ferdinand Melsom. The prize sum was 40,000 Norwegian kroner in 2015.

The Norwegian Booksellers' Prize (Bokhandlerprisen) is a literature prize awarded annually by the Norwegian Booksellers Association. The prize is awarded for one of the year's books in the fiction / general literature category, including children's and youth books. The prize was initiated in 1948, then did not return until 1961. It was also on a hiatus from 1970 to 1980.

Selected works

See also

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  1. "Nomination Database". www.nobelprize.org. Retrieved 2017-01-23.
  2. Erik Bjerck Hagen. "Tarjei Vesaas". Store norske leksikon. Retrieved April 1, 2018.
  3. "Halldis Moren Vesaas". Aschehoug. Retrieved April 1, 2018.
  4. Steinar Gimnes. "Tarjei Vesaas". Norsk biografisk leksikon. Retrieved April 1, 2018.
  5. "Nomination Database". www.nobelprize.org. Retrieved 2016-11-03.
  6. "tarjei Vesaas (1897-1970)". Gyldendal Norsk Forlag AS. Retrieved April 1, 2018.

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