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THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS


IN LITERATURE

By

courtesy of The American-Scandinavian Foundation

ALFRED NOBEL

THE NOBEL

PRIZE

WINNERS

IN LITERATURE * 1901-1931 *
By ANNIE RUSSELL MARBLE
*
*

Essay Index Reprint Series

BOOKS FOR LIBRARIES PRESS


FREEPORT, NEW YORK

First Published 1932

Reprinted 1969

'J

*oaca3tf7:

STANDARD BOOK NUMBER;


8369-1185-7

LIBRARY OF CONGRESS CATALOG CARD NUMBER:

70-84324

PRINTED IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

TO

PAUL AND ANNA

PREFACE TO REVISED EDITION


Thirty years have passed since the

awards were

first

made from the Nobel Foundation u to those persons


who shall have contributed most materially to benefit
mankind,"

in physics,

chemistry, medicine, "in the field

The

and the promotion of peace.

of literature/'

Nobel Foundation

calls

these recipients "laureates."

In these days of fleeting interests and restless moods,


it is

difficult to

keep public attention focused upon

nual events of an unsensational kind.

Clever devices

The

are used to gain publicity for recurring events.

Nobel

Institutes

an-

have resorted to no such baits to keep

interest alive; they

work

quietly and secretly, yet every

year, for three decades, the press of every country has

shown expectant

interest in the annual awards, while

of the Laureates, especially

discussion

in

literature,

has become more urgent, and sometimes turbulent,


later years.

emy judges
vital,

both

One

in

Whether
is

in

the choice of the Swedish Acad-

approved or regretted, the

interest

speculation and in retrospect.

of the provisions of the will of Nobel

is

"no

consideration whatever shall be paid to the nationality

of the candidates"

has

been carefully
vii

fulfilled.

Al-

PREFACE TO REVISED EDITION

viii

though Alfred Nobel declared that he


tion of his will to

more honest men

left the execu-

"because he found
Swedish judges
Sweden than elsewhere,"

in

long years of cosmopolitan travel and residence

was

wish that

his

benefits

all

years in literary honors


times; to

five

A survey of the
shows

Germany,

Britain, four; to Poland, Spain

to

it

proportion

this
five

and

last thirty
:

to

times; to Great

Italy, twice each;

Belgium and Switzerland, once each; to the United

States, once;
in

races should be equally eligible to

from these awards.

France,

his

in

and to the three Scandinavian

thirty years,

three to

only seven awards have been given,

Norway, two

The quota

countries,

to

Denmark, two

to

Sweden.

of poets has been eight, of dramatists,

five,

of historians and philosophers, three, and of writers of


fiction,

fourteen.

The query
provision, the

duced

arises every year regarding that other

award "to

in the field

work of an

the person

who

shall

have pro-

of literature the most distinguished

idealistic

tendency."

Many

have been the

evasions and interpretations of that phrase, "idealistic

tendency."

from

large group of laureates have rescued

literary oblivion, the folklore, language, habits

and history of
Spitteler,

their native lands, writers like Mistral,

Yeats,

Grazia

Deledda,

Lagerlof and Sigrid Undset.


erature holds the

first

rank

in

Reymont,

The Nobel

Prize

Selma
in Lit-

honor, remuneration and

PREFACE TO REVISED EDITION


world interest among the many competitions

ix

in different

countries.

For generous assistance

in

gathering material for

the last six chapters in this revised edition, the author

would thank Dr. Archibald Henderson, biographer of

George

Bernard

Shaw,

the

American-Scandinavian

Foundation, Signora Grazia Deledda for annotations

upon her writings, Mr. and Mrs. Grove Haines for


translations

research,

from the

Italian,

Miss Hope Robinson for

and the publishers, The Macmillan Company,

Henry Holt and Company, Alfred A. Knopf, Inc.,


Frederick A. Stokes Company, Brentano's and Harcourt,

Brace and Company, for permission to quote

extracts
is

from writings by

their authors.

The author

deeply indebted to the generous cooperation of Miss

Anna
tion,

C. Reque, of the American-Scandinavian Founda-

both for translations and criticisms.

A. R.
Worcester, Massachusetts

>

M.

PREFACE
These studies of Nobel Prize Winners

in

Literature

have been the result of research for several years and

upon

lectures

subject

the

in

courses, before college clubs

Extension

University

and other groups.

vast scope of the subject suggests temerity in one

attempts to treat

it

in

such limited space.

realizes the inadequacy of the


flicting

The

writer

book and possible con-

statements because of diverse authorities that

have been consulted.

After careful "siftings,"

offered as an incentive to further study, as a


to

The
who

many paths of

literary research.

it

is

roadmap

Biographical data

and brief criticism of the authors' works are followed


by

bibliography which

suggestive rather than ex-

is

haustive.

The

writer

of these chapters has been, in large

measure, the recorder of research by

and educational

institutions,

from wide reading.

many

individuals

with personal deductions

Among many

books that have

been stimulating are Creative Spirits of the Nineteenth

Century by Georg Brandes, Studies from Ten Literatures by Ernest


lations by

Boyd, books upon the drama and trans-

John Garrett Underhill, Ludwig Lewisohn


xi

PREFACE

xii

and Barrett H. Clark, and studies of Knut


Josef Wiehr and
cific

Hanna Astrup

Hamsun by

Larsen.

books of interpretation are emphasized

footnotes, as well as

Anna

spe-

in text

and

bibliography.

in

Gratitude that defies


pressed to Miss

Other

fitting

words would be here

ex-

C. Reque of the Bureau of In-

formation of the American-Scandinavian Foundation,


to the
to

Svenska Akademien Nobelinstitut of Stockholm,

Mrs. Velma Swanston Howard, Miss Svea Boson

and Thekla E. Hodge for translations, to Mr. R. F.

Sharp of the British Museum, to Eugen Diederichs


Verlag

in

Jena,

Copenhagen,
Francke,
Sutro,

to

Francis

Prof.

bridge,

Josef

Wiehr,

Library,

Kuno

Prof.

Rooney, Esq., to Mr. Theodore

Mr. Rupert Hughes, Miss Harriet

and to Miss Grace


Beals,

The Danish National

to

C. Marble,

W. Wood, Mrs. Helen

Abbott

and to librarians of the Widener Library, CamLibrary of Congress,

New York

Public Li-

brary, Free Public Library of Worcester and

many

other sources of encouragement and cooperation.

Appreciation of permission to quote extracts from


printed works and to use illustrations
to Sir

Edmund

agents, A. P.

acknowledged

Mr. Rudyard Kipling and

Gosse,

Watt &

is

Son, to editors of

The

his

Atlantic

Monthly, The Bookman, The Edinburgh Review, and


the publishing houses of American-Scandinavian Foundation,

D. Appleton

&

Co.,

Boni

&

Liveright,

The

PREFACE
Century Co.,

Thomas

Mead & Company,

Inc.,

xiii

Y. Crowell Company, Dodd,

Doubleday, Page

& Company,

Henry Holt and Company,


Houghton Mifflin Company, B. W. Huebsch, Inc.,
Alfred A. Knopf, Inc., Little, Brown & Company, J.
B. Lippincott Company, Longmans, Green & Co., The
Ginn

and

Company,

Macmillan Company, Oxford University Press, American Branch,

Charles

The

Pilgrim Press, G. P. Putnam's Sons,

ScribnerY

Sons,

Thomas

Seltzer,

Inc.,

Leonard Scott Publication Company, Herman Struck,

W.

P.

Trumbauer, The University of Pennsylvania

and Yale University Press.

Annie Russell Marble


Worcester, Massachusetts.

COiNTENTS
PACE

Preface to Revised Edition


Preface

vii

xi

CHAPTER
I.

Alfred Nobel
The Conditions of
His Will and Literary Results
:

II.

Poets of France and Provence


Sully-Prudhomme (1901)

Frederic Mistral (1904)


III.

Two German

....
....
...
....
.

Scholars

Theodor Mommsen (1902)


Rudolf Eucken (1908)
IV.

Carducci

Giosue

Italian

Poet
72

The Writings
Before

of Rudyard Kipling

and After the Award

(1907)
VII.

85

Selma Lagerlof Swedish


and Idealist (1909)
.

VIII.

Paul

Heyse

Hauptmann
IX.

42
42
48

(1906)
VI.

21
21
31

Bjornson: Norwegian
Novelist
and Playwright (1903)
.58
.

V.

(1910)
(191 2)

Realist

...

104

Gerhart
.

.124

Belgian-Symbolist
Maeterlinck
and Poet-Playwright (191 )
.148
1

XV

CONTENTS

XVI
CHAPTER

X.

Rabindranath Tagore

Bengalese

Mystic-Poet (19 13)


XI.

XII.

ROMAIN ROLLAND AND


tophe" (1915)

A Group

159
u

J ean "ChRIS175

of Winners Novelists
and Poets
Verner Von Heidenstam (1916)
Henrik Pontoppidan (19 17)
Karl Gjellerup (1917)
Carl Spitteler (19 19)

XIII.

PAGE

Knut Hamsun and His Novels

189
189
197
201
205

of

Norwegian Life (1920)


213
XIV. Anatole France Versatille Stylist in Fiction and Essays (1921) 224
XV. Two Spanish Dramatists
239

....

Jose Echegaray (1904)


Jacinto Benavente (1922)

XVI. W.

239
247

Yeats and His Part in the


Celtic Revival (1923)
253

XVII.

B.

Honors to Polish Fiction

264

Henryk Sienkiewicz (1905)


264
Ladislaw Stanislaw Reymont (1924) 269
George Bernard Shaw Dramatist,
.

XVIII.

and Prophet (1925)


277
XIX. Grazia Deledda and Her Stories of
Satirist

Sardinia (1926)

296

and
Bergson Thinker
XX. Henri
3i3
Teacher (1927)
XXI. Sigrid Undset Novelist of Medieval Norway and Ageless Human-

ity (1928)

327

CONTENTS

xvii
PAGE

CHAPTER

XXII.

Thomas Mann and His "Modern


Classic" (1929)

XXIII.

Sinclair Lewis

346

the

First Ameriof the Prize (1930) 364

can Winner
XXIV. Erik Axel Karlfeldt (1931)

383

Chronological List of Nobel Prize Winners


in Literature
395
Bibliography

397

Index

429

ILLUSTRATIONS
Alfred Nobel

Frontispiece

Frederic Mistral

32

BjORNSTERNE BjORNSON

58

Rudyard Kipling

86

104

Selma Lagerlof

Gerhart Hauptmann

134

Maurice Maeterlinck

148

Rabindranath Tacore

160

romain rolland

176

Knut Hamsun

214

Anatole France

224

Jacinto Benavente

248

William Butler Yeats

254

Henryk Sienkiewicz
George Bernard Shaw

264

Grazia Deledda

300

Henri Bergson

320

Sigrid

Undset

284

336

Thomas Mann

354

Sinclair Lewis

370

Erik Axel Karlfeldt

386

XIX

THE NOBEL PRIZE


WINNERS IN LITERATURE
CHAPTER

ALFRED NOBEL: THE CONDITIONS OF HIS


WILL AND LITERARY RESULTS
Nobilius was the ancestral name, by tradition, of
that family

whose representative, Alfred Nobel, has

name synonymous with inventiveness and large


benefactions to humanity.
The grandfather, Imanuel,
an army surgeon, is accredited with changing the famleft a

ily

name

to Nobel.

His

son,

Emanuel, father of Al-

fred, taught science in Stockholm, as a

With

young man.

inventive ability he experimented with explosives,

submarine mines, and other destructive forces and, by


paradox, became designer of surgical appliances and
India-rubber cushions to relieve suffering.
interested in ship construction

Egypt.

To

his

scientific research,

sons

with

He

was

and spent some time

in

he

transmitted

all

the dangers as well as the

inspiration of such ambition.

Two

his

spirit

of

explosions, during

experiments with nitroglycerine and other chemicals,


x

THE NOBEL

caused severe

PRIZE WINNERS

The

loss.

first,

occurring about 1837

in

Stockholm, shattered the nerves of the people as well


as their windows, so that

Emanuel went

to Russia,

on

the advice of friends prominent in affairs of industry

Here he was employed by

and government.

the Rus-

sians to continue his experiments with submarine mines;

with

remained here

he

family,

his

Crimean War, contributing


inventions.

when

An

his family

to naval

after

until

warfare by

older son, Ludwig, remained

returned to Sweden.

in

the
his

Russia

This son gained

repute as an engineer and discovered the petroleum


springs at Baku. 1

second explosion

factories of Sweden, in

in

one of the

1864, caused the death of a

younger son of Emanuel Nobel and shocked the father


so severely that he

was an invalid physically for the

rest of his life.

Alfred Bernhard Nobel was born

He

1833.
sensitive

less

Stockholm

in

robust than his brothers; he was

and nervous, suffering from headaches

all

his

His mother, Karoline Henriette Ahlssell, was

life.

his

was

at

devoted comrade from the early days when he

would

lie

on the couch while she read to him or told

him sagas and

hero-stories.

She was wise and happy

by nature, confident that Alfred would become "a great

man,"

in spite

sion.

He

of poor physique and moods of depres-

never married, although he loved a young

Westminster Review,

156,

642.

ALFRED NOBEL
girl

who

died

in

her

in

Sweden,

affectionate nature

Like

and

father

his

hh

her youth, but he was devoted to

mother to the end of her


visits to

he

Letters and frequent

life.

in his later life,

kept alive his

his idealism.

showed studious

interest

in

chemistry, physics, and mechanical engineering.

Ship-

building attracted his attention for a time and,

when

he was about seventeen, he was sent to the United


States to increase his knowledge of mechanics, as applied to ships, by association with

the

home

where

of the latter on Franklin Street,

a tablet has

for

Ericsson

time.

a
in

New

York,

been placed to commemorate the

War, young Nobel

services of this inventor in the Civil

lived

At

John Ericsson.

His father

sent

him

to

John

order to investigate an invention of

his,

an engine which was supposed to work by heat from


the

He

sun.

more than

stayed several months,


year.

Ericsson was passing through

At

a period of fluctuating fortunes.


his balance

probably not

was only $132.32

year had been but $2,000.

the end of 1849

his total receipts for the

Two

corded a balance of $8,690.10.

years later he reIn the interval he

had sold several patents and had received congratulations

from the King of Sweden upon the great future

for his "test caloric engine."


his

This was the goal of

experiments during these years;

be tested

in

the trial trip of

The

its

success

was

Ericsson* February

to
1

1,

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS


A squall came up as the boat was launched

4
1853.

making headway, and

it

sank, carrying with

it

and

hopes

of the inventor after years of experiment, and half


a

Ericsson was

million dollars of invested capital.

How

crushed for a few weeks.


ered his courage,
that

offered

won

to

made

pluckily he

recov-

The Monitor,

his plans for

United States government and

the

success for the cause of the North,

is

familiar

history.

Upon

Alfred Nobel, with his quick, impressionable

temperament,

this direct contact

with Ericsson must

Perhaps he decided then

have

left

that,

should fortune favor him, he would leave a fund

strong influences.

to aid scientists in their experiments

them against
couragement.

financial duress

When

he

and to protect

during periods of

returned

to

Sweden

dis-

and

Russia, he cooperated with his father and brothers in

manufacturing nitroglycerine and other explosives; he

was constantly seeking for

more powerful and

less

compound which would be

dangerous.

In 1857, at

St.

Petersburg, he had taken out a patent for a gasometer.

has been said that the discovery of what was later

It

known

as

dynamite came by accident to Alfred Nobel,

during an experiment about


glycerine
2

The

New

had escaped

1865-66.

Some

nitro-

into the siliceous sand of the

Life of John Ericsson by William Conant Church, 2 Vols.,

York, 1901.

ALFRED NOBEL
packing and

this

brought about a partial solution of

Dynamite, which was composed of 75


per cent nitroglycerine and 25 per cent kieselguhr, or

his

problem.

applied for patents

and sought for funds

in several countries,

tories

He

was produced.

infusorial earth,

to start fac-

which he believed would make a fortune by

manufacture of

this

new

explosive.

called "Nobel's blasting-oil."

that he

had invented "an

oil

It

was sometimes

He

told French bankers

that

would blow up the

world"; a facetious commentator declared, "French


bankers thought

it

for their interest to leave the globe

undisturbed" and refused him credit.

Napoleon

III

became interested and arranged for

funds for Nobel's factories

samples of dynamite

came

in his

in

New York

picion because of

hotels

With some

France.

hand bag, Alfred Nobel

to the United States on the

mission.

same commercial

received him with

sus-

rumors about the "deadly explosive";

he went to California where, through the aid of Dr.

Bandman,

a friend of Nobel's brother, a factory

Los Angeles.

started near
factories

were

in

In

was

few years manu-

operation in Italy, Spain, France and

Scotland, as well as

When

England and Sweden.

Al-

fred Nobel was forty years old he was making his

fortune

out

of this

"giant powder."

For several

years he lived in Paris where he had laboratories for


3

Vance Thompson,

in

Cosmopolitan, September, 1906.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

further experiments with gelatin, balastite, and forms

of smokeless powder.

Remo, he
patents

In

home,

later

his

San

in

more

carried on developments and took out

petroleum and

in

He

gutta-percha.

artificial

received the tribute of scientists and educators but


the ignorant people regarded

awe and fear


to

"he had put

work again among

him with

the long

a mixture of

hammer

was

a lonely

man.

many

His health was unstable; he often

centuated by the gaseous

was

self-distrustful

intense pain, ac-

in

fumes of

who

ments and

of

Alfred

letters.

advertisement

laboratory.

One

of the few

gained and kept his confidence was

Baroness Bertha von Suttner.


personality

his

and fearful that people were

attracted to him only by his wealth.


individuals

in a

Nobel

In her
is

Memoirs

revealed

She came to him

in

in

the

com-

response to an

Paris newspaper, asking for a secre-

tary for "a very wealthy, cultured gentleman."

remained only

suc-

wealth and honors, Alfred Nobel

worked with bandaged head and

He

Thor

the giants."

In spite of his inspiring life-work and


cesses, in spite of his

of

few days

secretary and housekeeper,

in

She

her joint capacity of

for a happy solution of

her interrupted romance with the Baron von Suttner

eventuated
letters

and

in

She exchanged

her speedy marriage.

visits

many

years

memory.

She

with Alfred Nobel for

and was devoted to him

in life

and

in

ALFRED NOBEL
him

describes

somewhat below average

as

without physical attractiveness but

no sense "re-

in

He was

pulsive," as he imagined himself to be.

somewhat of

fine linguist,

versationalist

he had written

He was

splendid."

critical

of

hearted people, especially those

ment of humanity
few

his

Madame

as

intellectual

Nouvelle Revue;

in a better

education

would meet, occasionally, men

false-

in

develop-

One

progressed.

companions

at her salon

simply

who importuned him

in

Adam, author and

Juliette

u
it

shallow,

the

with low motives; but he had faith

of

poem which

English and she found

in

He

a story-teller.

allowed her to read a long philosophical

good con-

a philosopher, a

and entertaining as

height,

Rue

of

Paris

was

editor of the

Nobel

Juliet,

and

science

let-

ters.

In the

Memoirs

of Baroness von Suttner

may

be

intimations of Nobel's motives which

located the

first

led to the

Nobel

prizes,

especially the specific

which was known as "the Peace Prize."


recalled that the

form

It will

be

Baroness von Suttner was one of

the early winners of this prize by her widely-read ro-

mance, Die

Wafen

nieder (Lay

Down Your

Arms!).

In 1890, after the publication of this story, advocat-

ing world peace,

mendation.
wish

On

Nobel wrote

letters

of high com-

another occasion he said to her, "I

could produce a substance or a machine of such

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

frightful efficacy for wholesale devastation that

wars

He

should thereby become altogether impossible."

contended, with the mind of a prophet, that a day might

come when

each other

in

two army corps may mutually annihilate


a

second"; then he believed that "all

civilized nations will recoil

On January

7,

and disband their troops."

1893, three years before his death, he

wrote to the Baroness from Paris. 5

my

dispose of a part of

fortune by founding a prize

to be granted every five years


in thirty

the

"I should like to

say six times, for

years they have not succeeded

reforming

system they will infallibly relapse into

present

barbarism.

in

if

...

If

the

comprising only three

Triple Alliance, instead of

states,

the peace of the centuries

should enlist

states,

all

would be assured."

Affirm-

ing his belief in "reasonable Socialism," he deplored


the custom of leaving large fortunes to heirs; too often
the results were lapses in mental ambitions and industry.

On December
in his

workshop

had realized

10, 1896,

at

his

Alfred Nobel died suddenly

San Remo.

For

a long time he

condition of reduced vitality.

He

consulted doctors unwillingly and heeded their counsel

He

with reluctance.

Vol.

Memoirs
I,

p. 210,

'Ibid., Vol.

I,

p.

own

pulse

von Suttner; Records of an Eventful Life,


York, 1910. By permission of Ginn & Co.

of Bertha

New

kept a record of his

438.

ALFRED NOBEL

and heart action but he never desisted from a


day's

work

in his

sad note that

and

it

had been

for the welfare of

man who had

originality

its

will startled the

The

and idealism.

been most successful

ments of destruction, by

in science

mankind and the

His

education towards world peace.

world by

care-

disposal of his fortune, deter-

should contribute to progress

literature,

civilized

He

to the last.

fully considering the

mined that

have a

last letters

sometimes sarcastic yet he kept faith

is

and with humanity

in

His

laboratory.

full

a paradox,

in

inventing ele-

had

left

most of

his large fortune to constructive, creative purposes.

Because he distrusted
his

own

legal adviser in large measure; sometimes he

had acted
abuse

his

Sohlmann
a

many lawyers he had been

as his

own

confidence.
as executor,

manager of

executor.)

He

appointing

In

M.

Ragnar

he explained that here "was

man who had never asked

the

might

secretary, lest an outsider

anything of me."

the factory at Bergen


left legacies

of

five

(Later

became associate
thousand pounds

each to his nephews but some efforts to "break the


will"

were threatened.

Emanuel, then head of the

family, refused to sanction such interference and, after

many

complications and delays, the will was allowed,

and varied equivocal, or impractical, conditions were


interpreted by

"Code of

Statutes," issued by the

of Sweden, June 29, 1900.

King

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

io

From
the will

pamphlet

this
6

is

quoted here the extract from

"Extract from the Will and Testament of

Dr. Alfred Bernhard Nobel, Engineer, which was

With
direct my

drawn on the 27th day of November, 1895:


the residue of

my

convertible estate

They

executors to proceed as follows:

my

hereby

shall convert

said residue of property into money, which they

shall then invest in

safe securities; the capital thus

secured shall constitute a fund, the interest accruing

from which

shall be

those persons

who

rially to benefit

preceding.
five

annually awarded

shall

in

prizes to

have contributed most mate-

mankind during the year immediately

The

said interest shall be

divided into

equal amounts, to be apportioned as follows: one

share to the person

who

have made the most

shall

important discovery or invention


Physics; one share to the person

in

who

the

domain of

shall

have made

the most important chemical discovery or improve-

ment; one share to the person who


the

most important discovery

ology or
shall

distinguished

Nobel

have made

domain of Physi-

Medicine; one share to the person

have produced

finally,

in the

shall

in the field

work of an

of Literature the most

idealistic

one share to the person

Stiftelson,

The Nobel

who

tendency;
shall

and

have most

Foundation, Code of Statutes given


June 29, 1900 (Stockholm, 1901).
From copy in Library of Congress.

at the Royal Palace in Stockholm on

Objects of the Foundation.

who

ALFRED NOBEL

or best promoted the Fraternity of Nations and the

Abolishment or Diminution of Standing Armies and


the

Formation and Increase of Peace Congresses.'

"The

In further details the will provides:


for Physics and Chemistry shall be

Swedish Academy of Science

in

prizes

awarded by the

Stockholm; the one

for Physiology or Medicine by the Caroline Medical


Institute in

Academy

Stockholm; the one for Literature by the

in

Stockholm

be

my

Svenska Akademien) and

Committee of

that for Peace by a


elected by the

(i.e.

Norwegian

express desire that

Storthing.

in

persons to be

five
I

declare

it

to

the awarding of prizes, no

consideration whatever be paid to the nationality of


the candidates, that

is

to say, that the

most deserving

be awarded the prize, whether of Scandinavian origin

or not."

Because of

difficulties in

interpreting certain sections

and elucidating other phrases,

was drawn up

this

in consultation

Code of

Statutes

with a representative,

nominated by Robert Nobel's family, and submitted


consideration of the King."
terests

After adjustments of

had been "amicably entered into" by the

tator's heirs,

June

5,

1898,

it

to
in-

tes-

was decreed that "The

instructions of the will above as set forth shall serve


as a criterion for the administration of the

tion

(Nobel)

in

Founda-

conjunction with the elucidations and

further stipulations contained

in

this

Code."

One

THE NOBEL

12

PRIZE WINNERS
u

was that

"stipulation"

founded by the said

will

annual prizes

each of the
shall

be awarded at least

once during each ensuing five-year period after the

year

in

which the Nobel Foundation comes into force."

The phrase used by Nobel in the words relating to the


u
prize in Literature, the Academy at Stockholm," was
interpreted "as understood to be the Swedish Acad-

Svenska Akademien."
planation was
"term,
emy

the

will shall

falling

Another

significant ex-

'Literature,'

used

in

the

be understood to embrace not only works

under the category of Polite Literature, but

also other writings

which may claim to possess literary

value by reason of their form or their

This

position."

last

mode

of ex-

provision, which seems elastic

and somewhat vague, has not led thus far to undue


difficulties

and

criticisms.

The phrase "during


to

scientific

the preceding year," as applied

and literary achievements

strange, impractical provision which

preted broadly

in

the

Code

thus

was

alike,

was well

inter-

"only such works

or inventions shall be eligible as have appeared 'during


the preceding year'

is

to be understood, that a

work

or invention for which a reward under the terms of


the will

is

contemplated, shall set forth the most mod-

ern results of

work being done

ments as defined

in the will to

in that

which

it

of the depart-

belongs

works

or inventions of older standing to be taken into con-

ALFRED NOBEL

13

sideration only in case their importance has not pre-

viously been demonstrated."

Two

other stipulations were

made

that have been

applied to the awards in literature, as elsewhere,


arrfount allotted to

one prize

may

"The

be divided equally

between two works submitted, should each of such

works be deemed to merit a prize."

Thus,

1904,

in

was divided between Jose Echegaray, the


Spanish dramatist, and Frederic Mistral, the poet
the prize

of Provence; again,

in

19 17,

it

was divided between

On

two Danish writers, Gjellerup and Pontoppidan.


the other hand, if

all

of the "works under examina-

tion fail to attain to the standard of excellence" re-

no award need be given that year, the "amount

quired,

added to the main fund or may be

set aside to

a special fund for that of one of the sections to

the object of the testator."

were no awards

To

form

promote

In 19 14 and 19 18 there

in literature.

facilitate impartial

judgment

it

was directed that

each of the four sections of the Swedish corporation


of award "shall appoint a committee

Committee

of

three or five

members

gestions with reference to the award."

their

Nobel

make sugTo be a memto

ber of this Nobel Committee one need not be "a

Swedish

"How
a

subject

or

member of

the

Corporation."

are these candidates for prizes nominated?"

frequent question.

It

is

is

stated explicitly in this

THE NOBEL

Code of

PRIZE WINNERS

section

Statutes,

"It

is

essential

every candidate for a prize under the terms of the


be proposed as such

person.

in

that
will,

writing by some duly qualified

direct application for a prize will not be

taken into consideration. "

Further explanations are

given of "qualifications entitling a person to propose

another for the receipt of a prize"

he must be

"a

representative, whether Swedish or otherwise, of the

domain of

Science, Literature, etc. in question

grounds for the award must be stated


this

same Code of

there

expanded

In

in writing."

Statutes, in a later section (p. 23)


u
information regarding The right

nominate a candidate for the prize-competition"

to

is

and the

this shall

emy and

"belong to

Members

of the Swedish Acad-

the Academies in France and Spain which

are similar to

it

in constitution

and purpose; members

also of the humanistic classes of other

Academies and

of those humanistic institutions and societies that are

on the same footing as academies, and teachers of


aesthetics,

colleges."

literature

For

and history

publicity

it

at

universities

was provided that

and
these

"regulations shall be publicly announced at least every


five

in

years in some

official

or widely circulated journals

each of the three Scandinavian countries and in the

chief countries of the civilized world."

The names

candidates must be presented by February


year.

first

of

of each

ALFRED NOBEL

15

Although the successful candidates for the various


prizes are usually "broadcasted,"

shrewd journalism, sometime

in

days of

these

in

November,

the official

announcements of the awards are made on "Founder's

Day," the tenth of December, the anniversary of the


death of the testator.
shall

make known

hand over
the

award and

bearing the testator's

The

last

inscription.

In

suitable legend."

Code of

the result of their

shall

the same, together with a diploma and

in gold,

translated,

this time the adjudicators

to the winners of the prizes a cheque for

amount of

medal

"At

whenever

word may be more

freely

explanation

further

the

"It shall be incumbent

on

feasible, to give a lecture

on

Statutes decrees:

a prize winner,

and

effigy

the subject treated of in the

work

to which the prize

has been awarded, such lecture to take place within

months of the Founder's Day

six

was won, and

to be given at

at

which the prize

Stockholm

This feature of

of the Peace prize, at Christiania."


the

or, in the case

award has not often been "feasible"

in literature,

although a few of the winners have received the prizes


in

we

person at Stockholm and made


shall note in later chapters.

fitting responses, as

The

decree

"Against the decision of the adjudicators


their

award no protest can be lodged.

final:

is

in

making

If differences

of opinion have occurred they shall not appear


7 Ibid.,

section 10.

in the

THE NOBEL

PRIZE WINNERS

minutes of the proceedings, nor in any other way be

made

To

public."

assist in their investigations

and to

further the "aims of the Foundation, the adjudicators

powers to

shall possess

The

and other organizations.


and belonging
the

establish

scientific

institutes so established

to the Foundation, shall be

name of Nobel

institutes

known under

Institutes."

While the general administration of the funds and


awards
five

rests with the

persons

u
(

Nobel Foundation,

consisting of

one of whom, the President, shall be

appointed by the King and the others by the delegates


of the adjudicating corporations") the

specific

work

of investigation and judgment rests with the organization cited in the will.

In literature, the "prizes are

assigned" by the Swedish Academy, after careful


vestigation by

Nobel

its

Institute

In

all

members, and the assistance of the

and Librarian.

books, mostly of

in-

modern

writings,

languages, translations,

large collection of

forms the Library.

when

necessary,

are

found here, also reports concerning works of recent

The Swedish Academy was founded by

publication.

King Gustavus III

in 1786.

It

has devoted

itself to

"the arts of elocution and poetry, to the preservation

of purity, force and elevation of diction

language both
literature.

in scientific

in the

Swedish

works and products of pure

Annual prizes have been

of years, in elocution and poetry.

offered, for scores

Eighteen members,

ALFRED NOBEL
all
is

17

Swedes, comprise this Academy, of which the King

He

patron.

appoints the Inspector of the Nobel

Swedish Academy but

Institute of the

management

its

"immediate

by a member of the Academy, chosen

is

by that body."

Two

conditions of the will of Alfred

been faithfully followed

have done something


manity";

(if

the recipients in

Nobel have
all

branches

not "most") "to benefit hu-

second place, "no consideration what-

in the

ever has been paid to the nationality of the candidates,"


in

the

way of

favoritism.

The most

reasonable

criticism of the awards, especially in literature,

has

been a failure to carry out what seems to have been the


assumed,

but

not

expressed,

namely, to stimulate
achievements.

work

Otherwise,

desire

of the

as well as to

why

donor,

reward past

that puzzling phrase

Not wholly without


comment that too many of the

about "the year preceding"?


foundation

awards

in

is

the

literature

than stepping-stones."

have been "tombstones rather

Many

of the earlier recipients

were past seventy, with productive


fore the honor.

know

faculties low, be-

It is a satisfaction to the public to

that a worthy writer has

had world recognition

before he dies, and that his last days

may have many

comforts possible through the financial award of about

$40,000but

such conditions do not seem in accord

with the spirit of the Nobel will and the attitude of

"

THE NOBEL

PRIZE WINNERS

the donor toward creative work.

The awards have

been too often retroactive rather than stimulating to


further writing.

Other winners, as

have accomplished vigorous

will be

noted

later,

award

literature, after the

as well as before the honor.

During the years from 1901, when the first prizes


were given, to 1925, twelve nationalities have been
represented

Germany and France have

in literature.

had the largest percentages

in

awards:

Spain, Italy,

Poland, Norway, Sweden have had two winners each.

Great Britain (including the awards to Rabindranath

Tagore and

to

thrice honored.

Yeats as well as Kipling) has been

Denmark

Switzerland came into the


Spitteler.

In

science

and

divided the prize one year;


lists

with her poet, Carl

"promotion

of

peace,

America has such names on the roster of honor


A. Michelson

in physics,

Dr. Alexis Carrel


velt,

in

Elihu Root and

T.

W.

Richards

medicine, and

in

as

A.

chemistry,

Theodore Roose-

Woodrow Wilson

in the

"peace

will of

Alfred

prize."

What

have been the influences of the

Nobel and the awards upon international literature?

An

unquestioned result has been to arouse both curios-

ity

and aspiration among writers and readers.

No

among any peoples, have caused such


widespread interest. The announcement of the Nobel
other prizes,

prizes each year has

become an event of outstanding

ALFRED NOBEL

19

Journals enter into competition, in re-

significance.

cent years, to get the first

word over

the wires and to

publish the most informing articles upon the winners.

Tense

Whatever may be
justice

in

and

precedes

interest

follows

the

awards.

one's individual opinion about the

every instance, the fact remains that the

chosen writer becomes the center of study and discussion for the current season
critics this

times

it

and

method of appreciation

may seem

To some

later years.
is

offensive; some-

to be a sensational "thrust into the

limelight" of an insignificant or mediocre writer.


the majority of cases, the result

is

like that

In

of a strong

from

telescope which can distinguish the "fixed stars


the meteors" in the literary horizon.

The second
tionality

an

work of an

influence

incentive

is

upon writers of every na-

to

produce "a distinguished

idealistic tendency,"

some book which

prove of "benefit to humanity."


istic,

is

difficult

to

render

French explanation of the

remarquable dans

le

all

will,

it

languages.
is

explicit,

sens de l'idealisme."

easy to justify the prizes


if

in

This term,

in literature, in

will

ideal-

In the
u
It

le
is

plus

not

several cases,

one emphasizes the usual meaning of "idealistic."

Occasionally, the

award was given for some

less recent

work, some hitherto unappreciated note of idealism


in

an earlier writing.

Two

examples,

are Bjornson's tales of peasant

life,

among many,

with interwoven

THE NOBEL

20

PRIZE WINNERS

A Happy Boy,

Arne and

sagas and poetry,

poem

Mireio, the pastoral

or Mistral's

of Provence which was

written

more than forty years before

given.

In these two cases, as will be noted later, there

was appreciation of

Upon

influence of the

both writers

Nobel awards

promote broader

literature has been to

was

or lan-

efforts to rescue a dialect

guage from literary desuetude.

and readers, the

the prize

interests

in

and

sympathies.

The most complete


lished

in

Peace,

1929.

written

life

Its

of Alfred Nobel was pub-

title

Nobel: Dynamite and

is

Ragnar

by

Sohlman

Henrik

and

and translated into English by Brian and

Schiick,

Lunn. 8

Beatrix

There

are

questions about Nobel's early

with John Ericsson

in

New

life

some

unsolved

still

and

his

sojourn

York, but much new

material has been collated about his family, his patents


(a

given in an Appendix) and the inner nature of

list is

this

man, as revealed

There

is

field,

winner.

The

survey of this

Remo "And
:

by money or
end of
8

from

letters.

Nobel awards,

life justifies

the tribute of

at the funeral services of Nobel, at

his

was not

a nature to be

success, or embittered

his life

his

with the words of inscription for each

Nathan Soderblom,
San

extracts

a complete catalogue of the

each

in

in

hardened

by loneliness to the

he was warm-hearted and kind."

Cosmopolitan, 1929.

CHAPTER

II

POETS OF FRANCE AND PROVENCE


The

prize of 190 1 has been

awarded:

Sully-Prudhomme, Rene Francois Armand, member of the


French Academy, born 1839, died September 7, 1907: "as an

acknowledgment of

his excellent merit as

cially of the high idealism,

an author, and espe-

artistic perfection,

as well as the

unusual combination of qualities of the heart and genius to

which

his

work

bears witness."

There has been


Nobel
is

a steadily cumulative interest in the

Proof

prizes, during the last twenty-five years.

found by comparing journals of 1901 and 1925,

with reference to data and discussion of prize winners

That

of the respective years.

was an epochal document,


literature,

was

the will of Alfred

in the history

of science and

a slowly recognized truth.

idealism in literature?

What

Nobel

What

is

writers will be can-

didates with books "of idealistic tendency"?

How

important will be the influence of such awards ?

Such

were queries
ism

is

many

minds.

elastic in interpretation,

winners will
ever,

in

in

testify.

The meaning of idealas examples among the

general principle holds, how-

past and present standards

1 Inscription with the Nobel Prize

21

Award

the

in Literature,

idealistic
1901.

THE NOBEL

22

PRIZE WINNERS

writer sees beyond nature and externals; he sees "with

The

the eye of the spirit."

pressed in

graph and
latter

is

fitting

difference has been ex-

analogy, by contrast between a photo-

same individual

a portrait of the

painted by an intuitive

artist,

the

if

with vision and

insight, as well as artistic technic.

Rene Francois Armand Sully-Prudhomme, the


author to win the prize

first

1901, received

in literature, in

adulatory comments from French journals and several

pages of personalia and criticism


zines of England,

in

literary

maga-

Germany, Scandinavia, and America.

For more than forty years he had been recognized

as

one of the greatest living poets, the philosophical poet


of the nineteenth century

France, about whose

in

and work there was inadequate information


translations;

the inadequacy

is

still

in

list

May

of international candidates.

Born

The

members

its

should have been chosen for this honor, the


the

English

apparent.

French Academy was happy that one of

life

first

in

on

Paris,

French poet evidently belonged to

16, 1839, this

the nineteenth century, in

its

middle and later decades,

rather than to the twentieth century and

its

productive

or prophetic writers.
In the poetry of Sully-Prudhomme are found,

most always, two elements sometimes


ful

tenderness

and

This combination of

serious,
traits

may

al-

in conflict, wist-

challenging

reflection.

be explained,

in part,

SULLY-PRUDHOMME
by the circumstances of

For ten years

his inheritance

and childhood.

mother had waited

his

23

marry her

to

lover, the father of the poet; four years after their

Devoted

marriage, he died.
that he

had marked

to her son

skill in science,

she gave

possible chance for education; but his

lacking in gayety or lighter interests.

Polytechnique
celled in

in

Paris,

and believing

him every

home life was


At the Ecole

Rene Sully-Prudhomme

ex-

mathematical sciences and his future seemed

assured as a scholar and teacher.

Then an

affected his eyes so seriously that he

had

to

illness

abandon

concentrated study and he began to write poems of


philosophic trend, questioning the meaning of life yet
vibrating with emotion.

The

first

collection of his

poems, Stances

appeared when he was twenty-six years

et

poemes,

old.

It

was

received with encomiums from critics and sold so well


that he determined to relinquish the hope of ever be-

coming either a

scientist

or a lawyer and decided that

he would devote his time to poetry.


is

found

his

Le vase

brise," one of the

In this collection

most familiar of

poems, with the extended analogy between the

broken vase, the verbena, and the heart; here

is

the

echoing refrain,
II est brise,

The

n'y touchez pas.

next year Les Epreuves, translated as

The

Test,

THE NOBEL

24

PRIZE WINNERS

was published, followed by Les Solitudes three years


and Les vrais tendresses,

later,

showed the

poetic meditations he
in his

own

In these

1875.

in

ever present

conflict,

nature, between the reason and the emotions,


le

Entre

combat sans vainqueur

la foi sans

preuve

charme.

et la raison sans

Even more pronounced was this motif of disharmony


in the two later poems, La Justice and Le Bonheur.
By his countrymen he was hailed as successor to Victor

Hugo and was

elected to

Academy

1.

in

188

membership

known poem

In the long and best

by Sully-Prudhomme,

La

Justice,

French

in the

strong

are

there

traces of the influence of Lucretius, the classic poet

whom

he admired and translated with

felicitous skill.

Prologue and an Epilogue and eleven "Vigils" com-

prise the structure of this poetic search for the element

of Justice.

There are two

divisions

Part

I is entitled

"Silence au cceur," rendered into English as "Heart,

Be

Silent !"

chosen

and Part

medium of

II,

"Appel au

expression

symbolic characters,

is

dialogue between two

"The Seeker," who analyzes

things with metaphysical exactness,

and

which proclaims the "divine aspect

in

"A
all

Justice cannot be located in the Universe;

found

in the

heart of man, "which

sacred temple."

The

cceur."

is its

it

all

Voice"
things."

may

inviolable

be

and

SULLY-PRUDHOMME
As La

Justice exemplified the search for Justice in

Le Bonheur,

Universal Nature, so

poem

the second long

published in 1888, was a symbolic epic, a prog-

towards supreme Happiness by three routes

ress

and

curiosity, sensuousness

The

fice.

science, virtue

and

sacri-

three Parts have been called, in one trans-

There are

Flight" ("Le supreme essor").


are strained in

effect,

"The Supreme

"Thought,"

"Intoxication,"

lation,

lines that

far less convincing and harmoni-

ous than the arguments

in

La

Justice;

are passages of poetic beauty.

by contrast there

Faustus and Stella are

two seekers after Happiness.

the

25

which

In a climax

they "take

might be more dramatic

flight" spiritually

from the temptations and disillusionments of earth


to seek, in sacrifice, their fruition of possible happiness.

One of

the colleagues of Sully-Prudhomme,

who

written frankly of his personality and poetry,

Ana-

In the biography of the latter, Anatole

tole France.

France: the

is

has

Man and His Work by James Lewis May, 2

among

the vignettes written of the group of poet-

friends

who

discussed

life

and

literature, is a typical

sketch of Sully-Prudhomme, at the age of thirty-six,

"mathematical and even geometrical

He
face

handsome
and far more

stressed his intellectuality, as well as his

and wealth.

More

illumining,
'

in his sonnets."

London and

New

York, 1924.

Ml

THE NOBEL

26

sympathetic,
the

in

is

PRIZE WINNERS

the analytic study of Sully-Prudhomme,

chapter entitled "Three

France's critiques

by

translated

On

in

Life and Letters,

W.

A.

Poets"

Evans.

Anatole

first

series,

Comparing

Sully-

Prudhomme, Franqois Coppee and Frederic


the critic finds in the

Plessis,

poet, "in his favour, not only

first

the mysterious gifts of the poet but, in addition, an absolute sincerity, an inflexible gentleness, a pity without

weakness, and a candour, a simplicity that


osophical scepticism, as

it

were on wings,

lift his phil-

into the lofty

regions whither formerly the mystics were exalted by

As

faith."

a friend

and confidant, he extols

this

man

of gentle melancholy, sentimental yet reflective, ro-

mantic yet philosophical.

Edward Dowden,
Writers of Verse,"
piness, or

his

essay on
the

attributes

"Some French
seeming unhap-

melancholy of Sully-Prudhomme, reflected

some of

in

in

his poetry, to the lack of a creed or a

loyalty to which he can give absolute devotion.


calls

him "an

tale of

He

finds

an analogy

in

the

Merlin, the poetical romance by Edgar Quinet.

woman's tenderness which

ishes his

manly vigor.

London and

Dodd, Mead
4

and

stresses the almost feminine sensitiveness of this

poet, a

eclectic"

He

&

New

York,

An
1922,

in

no way dimin-

individual of "harder or

pp.

Co.

Studies in Literature, London, 1892.

133-144.

By permission

of

SULLY-PRUDHOMME

27

narrower personality" would not have been so

dis-

turbed by the conflicts between reason and emotion,

by the deterrents to perfect happiness.

many years was


many moods of
from
son

Ill

a contributory factor, doubtless,

introspective

Parisian Portraits

He

sadness.

to

suffered

Francis Grier-

partial paralysis in later years.

in

health for

gives a graphic, intimate

picture of this "typical Academician" with grace of

manners and

intuitive insight into people,

against his illusions with the part of his


scientific,

and maintaining

At

tive emotions.

in the

of

Countess

Maximes de

Diane
la

his sensi-

rue de Faubourg

was often found

at the salons

Beausacq,

the

author

they

of

woman of independent
who was dressed in tones

This
hair,

of lavender, was an inspiration to the poet.


gether

was

seldom went

de

vie.

and beautiful

spirit

by

that

He

he always welcomed younger poets.


into society, although he

mind

his poetic vision

home

his

waging war

discussed

Prudhomme emphasized

philosophy

and

art;

ToSully-

"the aristocracy of the mind,"

the eternal quality of poetry, music, taste, and judg-

ment.

After the Franco-Prussian War, which was a great


strain

upon the physical and

poet,

Sully-Prudhomme wrote Impressions that awak-

ened

political

spiritual

endurance of the

discussion and revealed his pervasive

London, 1913, pp. 66-81.

THE NOBEL

28

PRIZE WINNERS

Versification

hand,

Que

other

index

tor

sais-je?

to

which appeared

his

upon these

well

queries,

said that his last

characterize

the other

1895 was an-

in

natural

into

inquiries

scientific

commenta-

What Do

entitled

words might be summa-

Doubts, yet never bitterness of

rized as "peut-etre."
despair,

On

and theories.

philosophy, and metaphysics.

Know?, has

of

and he testament poetique were expres-

sions of his poetic studies

science,

The Art

Essays upon the Fine Arts,

idealism.

speculative

his

poetry.

Four

years after he received the Nobel prize and two years

before his death, at the age of

sixty-six,

he wrote

La

vraie religion selon Pascal, a last record of his pro-

found search for

spiritual values in life

and

literature.

Several of the shorter poems by Sully-Prudhomme,

chosen from the

five

translated

English

into

volumes of

his verse,

by such poets

have been

Arthur

as

O'Shaughnessy, E. and R. Prothero, and Dorothy


Frances Guiney.

found

in

These metrical interpretations are

anthologies of French poetry by

The

ton and Albert Boni.

of the

in

wistful love

plication," translated

latter has included a

most representative and musical of

Prudhomme's poems
Verse.

H. CarringSully-

The Modern Book of French


poem is here entitled "A Sup-

by

I.

O. L.

The Modern Book of French Verse, edited by Albert


By permission of Boni & Liveright.

York, 1920.

few

Boni,

New

SULLY-PRUDHOMME
Oh

did you

know how

29

the tears apace

Fall by a lonely heart, alas!


I

think that before

my

Sometimes you did

And

did you

know

dwelling place

pass.

of the hopes that arise

In wearied soul from a pure young glance,

Maybe to my window
As if by chance.
.

But

if

for you,

your eyes

You'd

and holds

my

Quite simple over

picture

lift

you knew of the love that enwraps

My soul

More

you'd

it fast,

threshold, perhaps,

step at last.

typical

entitled

of

scientist-poet

this

"The Appointment,"

is

the

translated by

Arthur O'Shaughnessy. 7
'Tis late; the astronomer in his lonely height,

Exploring

Orbs

And

all

the dark, descries afar

that like distant

isles

mornings whitening

of splendor are,

in the infinite.

Like winnowed grain the worlds go by

Or swarm in
He summons

in flight,

glistening spaces nebular

one disheveled wandering star,

Return ten centuries hence on such a night.

The

star will come.

Cheat Science, or

Men
Man
Ibid.

It

dare not by one hour

falsify her calculation;

will have passed, but watchful in the tower


shall

remain in

verse-

sleepless contemplation;

THE NOBEL

30
And

should

Truth

Not

all

men have

perished there in turn,

would watch

in their place

all

PRIZE WINNERS
that star's return.

of the verses by Sully-Prudhomme are as

There

pictorial as these selections.

more than usual


his popularity

in

his

an unevenness

is

While

meditative stanzas.

waned with

new

the years and

rivals,

name

he was long the honored bard of France, with


linked with

that of Victor

The Nobel

poetry.

among world
estimates

more

Maurice Baring

in

meditative

new

interest

translations and critical

and

are

a recent

book of

appeared

his

in

stimulated

prize

readers;

Hugo

being

issued.

criticism,

Punch

still

and Judy and Other Essays, has written words of


succinct analysis of this

him

as "a poet

who

French poet: he distinguishes

thinks and not a thinker

He

merely uses poetry for recreation."

who

adds, of his

simple yet fastidious form, "Other poets have had a

more glowing imagination;

his verse

is

neither exuber-

ant in colour nor rich in sonorous combinations of

sound.

The

grace of his verse

is

one of outline and

not of colour; his compositions are distinguished by


his subtle
his

music

ments."
8

rhythm;
is

his verse

like that

is

as

if

carved

in

ivory,

of a unison of stringed instru-

Punch and Judy and Other Essays by Maurice Baring, New York,
By permission of Doubleday, Page 8c Co.

1924, pp. 216-219.

FREDERIC MISTRAL

31

Frederic Mistral
Poet of Provence

The

prize of 1904 has been awarded, one half to:

Mistral, Frederic, born

1830, died

March

25,

1914: "for

reason of the fresh originality, rich genius, and true artistry in


his poetry

that faithfully mirrors the nature

and

life

of the

people of his native country; and also with respect to his significant activity as Provencal philologist."

Three years

after the

had been awarded


to

who

writer

although he
tral.

is

first

Nobel prize

in literature

came again

to

Sully-Prudhomme,

is

ranked among French authors,

it

distinctively of Provence, Frederic

This poet of Mireio, a pastoral

epic, if

Mis-

one

may

use the term, and the preserver of the Provencal lan-

guage

from

award and

literary

the

when

shared

the

financial

honor for 1904 with Echegaray, the

Spanish dramatist,

of this book.

oblivion,

who

is

discussed in another chapter

Mistral was seventy-four years old

this recognition

came

to him; he lived for ten

years longer, wielding influence upon world literature

and receiving reverential homage

His home

in later

Maillane,

in

in his

own Provence.

years was in the same quiet town of

the Bouches-du-Rhone

where he was born

1830.

in

His father was


9

wealthy farmer who had aspira^

Inscription with the Nobel Prize

Award

in Literature,

1904-

32

THE NOBEL

tions to

make

school

at

PRIZE WINNERS
The boy was

his son a lawyer.

Avignon and,

Nimes University and

later,

sent to

took his degree at

One of the
Avignon was Joseph Roumanille who had

teachers at

studied at Aix.

a large share in restoring interest in the language.

He

compiled a fixed orthography of the Provengal

forms and revived

racial

sentiment in the schools.

Like his pupil, Mistral, he was a firm advocate of


classic poetry.

ber, Jacques

Twenty years

before, a famous bar-

Jasmin of Agen, had recited troubadour

songs throughout the villages and had preserved, by


voice,

many

native legends and folk ballads.

It

is

money to charity and


that, within a few years, he had gathered $300,000.
The school-teacher formed a society of young men at
said that he gave his receipts in

Avignon,

including

"seven

poets

and

dreamers,"

among whom were numbered Roumanille, Mistral,


They pledged alleAubaniel, Mathieu, and Brunet.
giance to Poetry, Love, and Provence.

There has

been general acceptance of the statement that Mistral

gave to

this

inally called

group of poets the name of Felibres,

"The Seven

They agreed

Law.

Felibres" or Scribes of the

to write in their native language

of Provence, to extend
it

orig-

its

might be more than a

knowledge and
dialect.

use, so that

They maintained

that

it

was

that

it

came from the language of Rome and thus was

similar to that of the medieval troubadours,

IF

By

courtesy of The

New

York Public Library

FREDERIC MISTRAL

FREDERIC MISTRAL

33

the parent tongue of Italy, France, and Spain.

AL-

though some of these statements have been seriously


questioned by orthographers, the enthusiasm of these

was acclaimed and

Felibres

literary masterpieces fol-

lowed; the celebrations of the Felibres are

worthy

still

note-

festivals.

Another story

is

that Mistral,

who was very fond

of his mother, began to write his verses in French and

brought them to her, assured of her encouragement

and

praise.

Alas

his

mother could not read French,

although she was confident that her son was a poet


of rare genius.

"Let us sing

in the

language of our

mother!" was the determination of the youth.


collected

legends,

and romantic episodes

folk-tales,

from every possible source near


In 1858

was published

the

first

pastoral epic which has held


increasing

appreciation,

for

Roumanille was sponsor for


a

He

his

home

in

Provence.

edition of Mireio, the


its

literary rank, with

more than
this

sixty years.

work; the next year

French translation was made by Mistral and the

book amazed Parisians by


dedicated to Lamartine.

its

poetic charm.

It

was

Mistral was compared, by

enthusiastic critics, to Vergil, Theocritus,

and Ariosto.

poem Mistral wove


many local customs and personal memories. The
mas, or farmstead, was modeled from his own home
and Ramoun, the wealthy mtfj-dweller, had many
Into the twelve Cantos of his

THE NOBEL

34
traits

of his

own

hood had been


trayed

father.

PRIZE WINNERS
Familiar to him from boy-

the festivals and daily tasks here por-

the wheat-threshing, the snail-gathering, the

fireside meals, the

of harvest day.

dance of the farandole on the eve


In outline

conventional theme.

it

is

a simple,

somewhat

Mireio, daughter of a "farmer-

prince," loved the son of a poor basket-weaver; their

romance had days of joy and nights of deep sorrow;


the epical climax of the death of Mireio at the Church

of the

Holy Maries

is

relieved of

by the words of hope on the

lips

its

grim tragedy

of the dying her-

oine.

There

is

a gayety of spirit, a zest of life in the open-

ing lines of Invocation, the poet's promise to


life

tell

the

story of this lovely girl of fifteen and her innocent,

ardent passion:
I

sing the love of a Provencal

How

maid

La Crau

through the wheat-fields of

Following the fate that drew her to the

she strayed

sea.

Unknown beyond remote La Crau was she;


And I, who tell the rustic tale of her,
Would fain be Homer's humble follower.

What though youth's aureole was her only crown?


And never gold she wore, nor damask gown?
I'll build her up a throne out of my song,
And hail her queen in our despis'd tongue.
Mine

be the simple speech that ye

all

Shepherds and farmer-folk of lone

know,

La Crau

FREDERIC MISTRAL

35

The romantic episodes are told in the cantos, "The


Suitors," "The Battle," "The Witch," 'The Saints,"
"Death."

Graphic

by the

setting are suggested

"Leaf-Picking,"

margue" (or

"The

salty

of

pictures

local

subtitles

"Lotus Farm,"

and

Cocooning,"

marshes of the Rhone).

songs are interspersed like this

in

and

customs

Canto

Ca-

"the

Exquisite
III,

"The

Cocooning"
If

thou the

Sailing in
I'll

moon

wilt be,

glory,

be the halo white

Hovering every night

Around and

If thou

o'er thee.

become a flower,

Before thou thinkest,


111 be a streamlet clear,

And
That

all

the waters bear

thou, love, drinkest.

Mireio was made familiar to American readers of


the last generation by the translation of Harriet
ters Preston (Boston,

1872).

Wa-

Several excerpts from

her verse-interpretations of this and Mistral's later

poems are
Literature,
excellent

to be found in Library of the

edited by

sketch

unique, virile

World's Best

Charles Dudley Warner;

of the poet

is

found here.

an

With

words George Meredith has rendered

THE NOBEL

36

into verse

some stanzas from Canto X, "The Mares

of Camargue":

PRIZE WINNERS

10

hundred mares,

white! their manes

all

Like mace-reed of the marshy plains


Thick-tufted, wavy, free

And when

o'

the shears:

the fiery squadron rears

Bursting at speed, each mane appears

Even

as the

white scarf of a fay

Floating upon their necks along the heavens away.

When

the fiftieth anniversary of the publication of

Mireio was celebrated

at Aries,

Calve sang the "Song

of Magali" and noted French actors and opera artists

rendered Gounod's Mireille, which

The most dramatic

Mistral's pastoral.
eighth,

the

La

plains of

flight

is

of the heroine

based upon
canto

across the

is

the

rocky

Crau, finding shelter at the shrine of the

The maiden's prayer

Holy Maries.

for help in her

hour of need, for understanding of her love for her

"handsome Vincen,"
cantos have

legends

of

is

wistful

and appealing.

Two

been devoted to revival of these old

Holy Maries.

the

Disciples

of Jesus,

driven from Palestine after his crucifixion, according to


tradition,
tors.

were

set afloat in a

They had

barque by their persecu-

They were
where now stands the

neither sail nor oars.

washed ashore on the sacred

soil

10 Poems by George Meredith, New York,


By per1897, 1898.
mission of Charles Scribner's Sons, and the heirs of George Meredith.

FREDERIC MISTRAL
village of

Among
Mary and

Les Saintes Maries.

were Lazarus and

his sisters,

(who was

servant Sarah

Mary Magdalene,

37
these disciples

Martha,

their

the patron saint of gypsies),

Joseph of Arimathea, and Tro-

phine, one of the oldest and wisest of the disciples

who

converted to Christianity the town of Aries.

Two

long

narrative

The

Calendau and Nerto.


is

more potent

toral.

It

in

poems

Ventour"

skill

than the earlier pas-

has lines of emotional intensity, when the

who

lost

for a humble suitor, inspires

of

prowess
is

and

her rank because of love

him by her

chivalry.

cate the action

and colorful

tion of "the catch"

and

fine spirit

"The

a dramatic episode in this

stanzas, translated by Harriet

Scaling

poem.

Waters Preston,

quality; this

is

The wounded

indi-

a descrip-

xl
:

wretches, 'neath the

wave withdrew,

Trailing red lines along the mirror blue.

Slowly the net brimful of treasures mounted;

was

there, turquoise

Rubies and
11

By

and gold uncounted,

emeralds million-rayed.

permission of the Atlantic Monthly

The men
Co.

of

Two

Yet had we brave and splendid sport, I ween,


For some with tridents, some with lances keen,
Fell on the prey.
And some were skilled to fling
A winged dart held by a slender string.

Silver

former, published in 1867,

dramatic

heroine, a Princess

tales

Mireio

followed

THE NOBEL

38

Flung them thereon

PRIZE WINNERS

They stay their mother's


Her apron bursting with

Of
There
last

apricots

is less

and

when

like eager children

footsteps to explore
its

summer

store

cherries.

atmosphere

in

Nerto an
f

epic tale of the

days of the Popes at Avignon and "the miraculous

burial-place,"

The Aliscamp

of history

Far below Aries.

The legend of

this spot is

one of the best portions of

Nerto
out of the heaven came,

Our Lord himself to bless the spot,


And left, if the tale erreth not
The impress of his bended knee,
Rock-graven. Howso this may be,
Full oft a

Bends

hither,

Singing

Among

swarm

of angels white

on a tranquil night,

celestial

harmonies. 12

the collections of lyrics of love and patriotism

by Mistral the

earlier

volume

Isles d'Or, contained songs in


tine listened to recital of these

in

1875, entitled Les

many moods.

Lamar-

and other verses "in the

sweet nervous idiom of Provence, which combines the


Latin pronunciation with the grace of Attica and the
12

Translated by Harriet Waters Preston.

Monthly Co.

By

permission of Atlantic

FREDERIC MISTRAL
He

of Tuscany."

serenity

39

"The

adds,

verses

of

Mistral were liquid and melodious, they pleased with13

out intoxicating me."

The

later collection, issued in

19 1 2, was entitled Les Olivades.

plained the

swelling seas

my

life

my

olives

At

this

"The days

that

things

me

title:

all

tell

has come, and that

and

Mistral thus ex-

grow

chill

and the

that the winter of

must without delay gather

offer the virgin-oil

on the altar of God."

He

time the poet was eighty-two years old.

had written an autobiography,

Mes

reminiscences of his youth, which

origines,

with

was translated

as

Memoirs of Mistral by Constance Elisabeth Maud;


the lyrics of Provence

by

were rendered

into English here

Alma Strettell (Mrs. Lawrence Harrison).


Few writers have had more intensive love

country than

He

Mistral.

chair in the French


sitate leaving

of

refused the offer of a

Academy because

it

would

neces-

Provence; he was given prizes by the

Academy and badges

of the Legion.

years he married a beautiful young


family; she has been crowned
in a yearly festival

Late

woman

Queen of

in

mature

of Arlesian

the Felibres,

of contests and songs.

Towards

the close of the nineteenth century Mistral began collecting

specimens of Provencal flowers,

archeological relics for a


this his "last
13

poem."

Cours familier de

museum

rocks,

and

at Aries; he called

In a typical mas, or farmstead,

litter ature.

THE NOBEL

4o

PRIZE WINNERS

he placed these collections and equipment of varied


kinds,

He

showing the customs of the land.

resented,

also,

certain

Among

figures.

feasts

others, here

rep-

and traditions by wax


is

the Arlesian legend

women

of the feast of Noel and the

visit

mother and her

one brings a match that

the child's

first-born;

body may be

may

egg, that his life

symbol of wisdom. 14

be

Provence.

Daudet,

The

to a

straight, another brings an


full,

and

a third brings salt,

Nobel prize

large part of the

money was used by Mistral


ment of this Museum.
Alphonse

of three

like

for the housing and equip-

Mistral,

is

native

of

natives admire the literary grace and

wit of the former, "even

if

he

may

laugh at us oc-

For ten

casionally," they say, but they love Mistral.

years the latter worked upon his Comprehensive Lex-

and Modern Provencal, which was

icon of Ancient

published in two large volumes in

honored by the educated

classes

He

1886.

was

and loved by the

peasantry, landowners, and boatmen of the Rhone.

In 1897 he incorporated into his narrative

in verse,

he poeme du Rhone, many customs and songs

of the

days before steamships had increased the speed of


travel

and reduced

its

picturesqueness.

cantos he celebrated this famous river and


14

"Frederic Mistral

Review, March, 1924.

In
its

twelve

border

Poet of the Soil" by Vernon Loggins, Seivanee

FREDERIC MISTRAL
towns.

41

dramatic scene recalled the

flight

As

poleon across the border from Russia.

poem

this

is

poetic art

inferior to Mireio or Calendau;

spontaneity yet

Poet of the

it

soil

of Na-

it

lacks

has musical measures.

was Mistral, akin

in his simplicity

and loyalty to Burns and Whittier, although more of

scholar and technician than either of these writers of

Like them, however, he created anew the

verse.

life

of his rural people; he touched daily incidents with


poetic beauty.
itors

He

received

from every country

many

distinguished vis-

in his later

years and treas-

ured letters from scholars of every land.


the

latter

written
a

was

letter

Among

from Theodore Roosevelt

when he was President and had

received

copy of a new edition of Mireio; to the poet he

knowledged

his

delights that he

indebtedness of

had found

many

ac-

years for the

in this wistful love

poem

of

Provence, which mirrored so perfectly the traditions

and

life

of the people.

CHAPTER

III

TWO GERMAN SCHOLARS: THEODOR


MOMMSEN RUDOLF EUCKEN
The prize of 1902 has been awarded:
Mommsen, Theodor, Professor of History
of Berlin, born

November

1817, died

living master of

the age

in

1,

the art of

at the University

1903: "the greatest


representing history,

taking into especial regard his monumental work, Rornische


Geschichte."

France was the

Nobel prize
In

1902,

in

first

country to be honored by the

literature;

Germany was

Mommsen, whose

Theodor

the second.

records

scholarship included history, law and archeology,


the chosen candidate.

He was

was

gratification

among

was

eighty-four years old

and lived for only a year after the award.


there

of

his

While

countrymen and

friends in other lands, at his recognition and this high

honor, yet there were adverse comments

in

several

journals about the perversion of the intent of Nobel's


will.

The

recipient

had

finished his

work; the award

could never quicken him to further research or expression of idealism.


1

This choice showed the intention

Inscription with the Nobel Prize

42

Award

in Literature, 1902.

THEODOR MOMMSEN
of the Swedish

Academy

43

to consider "literature" in a

broad sense, including contributions of

scientific

value

as well as those of artistic merit.

Garding,

in

Mommsen;
fore he

was

his school days

the

of

birthplace

were spent

thirty years old he

Academy

the Berlin

was

Schleswig,

at Kiel.

Be-

had been employed by

to decipher

and examine

Roman

and France, because of marked

inscriptions in Italy

He

accuracy and zest in research.

combined the read-

ing of law with that of history and, in

1848, was

called to the department of law at Leipzig University.

Always

fearless in political convictions

and ardent

in

Liberalism, he was obliged to retire from this University because of active participation in the political
issues of

848-1 849.

to professorship of

Two

years later he was called

Roman law

at Zurich; after serv-

here for two years he accepted a similar position

ice

at Breslau.

In

magnetic

the

in

all

as

classroom and inspirational in his

contact with University students


the civilized world.
sity

was recognized

these places he

from

all

parts of

In 1858, he went to the Univer-

of Berlin as Professor of Ancient History and

there extended his influence

among

scholars and lay

readers.

Although

specific in his interests

and a student of

deep earnestness, he had read and traveled widely;


as conversationalist he excelled, informed

upon

topics

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

44
in

almost every branch of learning and

To

activity.

him has been attributed the oft quoted sentence, "Each


student must choose his special

must not imprison himself within

was

grace,

He

knowledge.

versatile

well

as

as

vigor,

sion of current affairs.

with

whether

his

in his

law and

facility

and

theme was a

He

was, however,

ultimate purposes and hopes for

He

opposed Bismarck

and sometimes won over him

in

courts of

in

House of Delegates, by

Prussian

in the

his

In political creed he belonged

future union of factions.


his tenets

He

a journalistic discus-

National Liberal Party.

never partisan

confines."

wrote

monumental History of Rome, or


to the

its

modern Erasmus" because of

"the

called

of labour but he

field

his

At the same time, he admired the


Chancellor very much and said, "What a calamity it is

keen, logical mind.

for us

that political animosity should deprive us of

all

the privilege of mixing socially with such a

On

principle,

he

was opposed

towards the Boers, and gave

to

his

British

allegiance

man!"
attitude
to

revolutionists.

Again, he deplored the strained

lations at times

between

asserted,

"What

his country

a pity that

dred race should remain

Bookman,

Ibid. 346-348,

at

the
re-

and England and

two great nations of


loggerheads!"

He

kin-

de-

18: 346.

of the Editor of

December, 1903,

The Bookman.

article

on Mommsen.

By

permission

fHEODOR MOMMSEN
and considered the

tested slavery

United States "a holy crusade."

More

Civil

45

War

than one hundred volumes of original writing

and translations from the Latin and Germanic


guages are

German

the

in

under Mommsen's name

listed

Edward A. Freeman,

libraries.

in

large

a critic

historian of international repute, has called

lan-

and

Mommsen

"the greatest scholar of our times, well-nigh the greatest scholar of all times."

His writings show mastery

of law, languages, customs, archeology, coins, inscriptions and

monuments, that are of inestimable value to

He

students.

was editor of Corpus tnscriptionum

Latinarum which was issued by the Berlin Academy

many years. To the


the name of Theodor

of which he was secretary for

average

Mommsen
of

however,

reader,
will

always be associated with his History

Rome, written

854-1 856, which

authenticity and popularity.

As

still

maintains

a writer,

was always

illumining, with a vivid style; he

dramatic.

He

Mommsen
was often

touched descriptive scenes with grace

and color but he was convincingly


trayal of events

its

and characters.

realistic in his por-

He

unfolded a large

canvas but he kept a true focus and threw a strong light

upon both individuals and group-pictures, from the


early days of
4

Rome

to the death of Julius Caesar.

Some Eighteenth Century Byways and Other Essays by John


Buchan, Edinburgh and London, 1908, William Blackwood & Sons.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

46

Although

Rome, he

his

masterwork was

entitled History of

explained, in the Introductory Chapter, that

he intended "to relate the history of Italy, not simply


the record of the city of

Rome."

While

the

Romans

represented the most powerful branch of the Italian


yet they were

stock,

only a branch

but

this

civic

community of Rome gained sovereignty over Italy


and the world of its day. Like the historian Freeman,

Mommsen

similarity of

Few

times.

upon "the unity of history," the

insisted

human nature from 1800


writers have surpassed

He

historical characters.

prejudices which

likes,

ments and balanced

in his estimates.

Mr. Buchan has

modern

in revivifying

likes

and

justified in his state-

The

portrait of

bitten with vitriolic energy,"

said, in

dis-

he could impress upon the

was generally

"was

him

had strong

reader, although he

Cicero, which

B. C. to

as

Some Eighteenth Century By-

ways and Other Essays, has been most widely quoted;


it is

less impartial

nibal, Sully,
bias,

than his characterizations of Han-

and Caesar.

Mommsen was

By temperament and

political

an admirer of Julius Caesar; he

has given to him a living portraiture.

The

pictorial

Chapter IV

in

Book

of Hannibal's Passage of the Alps,


extract

from

chapter

is

this

is

History of Rome.

III, descriptive

world-famous
In the same

the analysis of Hannibal's character,

often quoted:

"He was

so

primarily marked by that

THEODOR MOMMSEN

47

inventive craftiness, which forms one of the leading

of the Phoenician character; he was fond of

traits

taking singular and unexpected routes: ambushes and

stratagems of

all

sorts

were familiar

to

him; he studied

the character of his antagonists with unprecedented


cace.

The power which he wielded over men

shown by

is

incomparable control over an army of

his

various natives and

many

tongues.

He was

great man; wherever he went, he riveted the eyes of


all."

There

history of dramatic incident, written with

is

pictorial skill, in such passages as the Battle of Cannae,

and the Crossing of the

the story of the Gracchi,

The breadth

Rubicon.

of

Mommsen's

interests are

suggested by such later chapters as those on


Religion,

Manners, and Literature and Art.

was deeply interested


its

aspects

and

in the past,

personalities, he

While he

and informed about

was

alert in all

ments of the present and their trends.


the future with prevision

He

and optimism.

which

modern

will be

will only be

move-

looked to
In the In-

troductory Chapter to his famous Histdry of


contrasts

Roman

Rome

he

history with past cycles of culture

repeated and adds

"And

yet this goal

temporary: the grandest system of

History of Rome by Theodor


Dickson, New York, 1908, Vol.
Charles Scribner's Sons.

Mommsen,
II,

civili-

translated by William P.

pp. 244,

245.

By

permission of

THE NOBEL

48

zation has

its

have reached

may complete

and

orbit,

human

not so the

PRIZE WINNERS
when

race, to which, just

goal, the old task

its

its

is

course; but

seems to

it

ever set anew,


6

with a wider range and with a deeper meaning."


In

Mommsen was

spirit,

ist,

worker

"to

entitled to rank as an ideal-

mankind."

benefit

In

literary

achievements he richly deserved the Nobel prize; his

had enriched human knowledge beyond

researches
those

of

other

scholars;

his

writings

appealed

the reader of ordinary mentality as well as to the


intellectual;

vision

his

and faith

to

more

human progress

in

were undimmed.

Rudolf Eucken
German Philosopher
The

prize of 1908 has been

awarded:

Eucken, Rudolf, Professor of Philosophy


of Jena, born
sincerity

of

University

1846, died September 14, 1926: "because of the

his

search

for

truth,

thought, the clarity of vision, the


tation with

at the

which he

has,

in

the

penetrating

warmth and

his

of

force of interpre-

numerous works,

and developed an ideal world philosophy."

power

cultivated

In 1908, six years after the Nobel prize came to

Mommsen,
Rudolf

it

was again awarded

Eucken.

By permission

Inscription

By

to a

translation

of Charles Scribner's Sons.


with the Nobel Prize Award

German
and

in

scholar,

lectures

Literature,

in

1908.

RUDOLF EUCKEN

49

was no

countries other than his own, this recipient

Born

stranger to readers of current literature.

in

1846, in Aurich, East Friesland, Eucken was younger

than the majority of the earlier winners; he accom-

much writing and

plished

His mature

had been given.


struggle
day.

was

worthy winner of

most distinguished work of an


his country.
his

was devoted

life

the materialistic philosophy

against

He

lecturing after the honor


to a

of his

a prize for "the

tendency"

in

His incessant purpose was expressed

in

"My

autobiography:

idealistic

reminiscences

tell

about

of the struggle to prevent the externalization of

This externalization
fault of

not,

is

it

one particular nation;

nation and a radical change

true,

is

is

it

is

in

is

needed

pathy the modest


reminiscences."

efforts

and trading region

boy's

is

the

childhood

Rudolf Eucken:

lated by Joseph
Scribner's Sons.

which are recorded

in

sym-

my

in

is

an agri-

Germany, near Holland,

with occasional fisheries as industry.


Aurich,

a spiritual

will follow with a kindly

His native province, East Friesland,


cultural

every

in

each.

Every man who shares the conviction that


reformation

life.

the defect or

found

needed

all

His

birth town,

commercial and social center.

was

His Life,

McCabe,

New

somewhat

Work and
York, 1922.

sad;

he

was

The
the

Travels by himself, transBy permission of Charles

THE NOBEL

So

child

first

born to

riage,

and

old.

He had

and youth

PRIZE WINNERS

his father died

mar-

his parents after ten years of

when

the lad

was

years

five

a series of misfortunes in his infancy

his throat

was badly torn

in

the effort to

extricate a curtain-fastener which he nearly swallowed


as a baby; he

had

and wrong treatment,

scarlet fever

was threatened with blindness for

so that he

a time

but recovered; a younger brother's death added to the

family gloom.

Rudolf Eucken inherited studious

His

inclinations.

was

father, spending his days in the postal service,


a

fine

mathematician.

clergyman
read

who was

in science

His mother (daughter of

was

a leader of Radicalism)

and ambitious for her son; the

well-

latter

records that she was, also, a practical housewife.

Af-

death their finances were low and

ter

the

the

mother took lodgers to add

father's

to her income.

She

was determined that Rudolf should be well educated,


that he should

become

a philosopher or scientist.

recalls his debt to her in his reminiscences.

gymnasium

at

Aurich he showed interest

matics and in music.


plastic days

was

in

At

He
the

mathe-

strong influence of those

who was

his teacher, Reuter,

forced

to retire by the bureaucracy because of his liberalism.

Other professors who

left traces

were Letze and Teichmuller.


the University of Berlin.

upon

For

his

development

a time he

was

at

After experimental teach-

RUDOLF EUCKEN
ing he

was

51

called to Basel as professor of philosophy.

His mother went with him but

their plans for

happy

years together were shattered by her death.


Basel was at this time a small University with about

one hundred and

fifty

students; Eucken

came

into close

contact with these in the classroom and outside activities.

Already he had begun to write studies upon

philosophers of classic days,

Aristotle

and others.

In 1873 he accepted a call to Jena University where

he was brought into comradeship with such brilliant


associates as

The

Kuno

Fischer,

Haeckel and Hildebrand.

1878, of Eucken's book, Fundamental

issue, in

Ideas of the Present

Day

(or

The Fundamental Con-

Modern Philosophic Thought) aroused


den interest among scholars of every country in
cepts of

daring,

The

basic idea

was

lations of history

President

Noah

lation of this

M.

of

philosopher

idealistic

to

and

Jena

sud-

University.

emphasize the harmonious

At

criticism.

this

re-

the request of

Porter of Yale University, a trans-

book

into English

was made by Professor

Stuart Phelps; thus American readers became ac-

quainted with this

German

scholar

who was

to enter

later into friendly contact with academic organizations

here.

By

his marriage, in 1882, to Irene

increased his prestige


leaders.

He

among

Passow, Eucken

intellectual

says that his wife

and

social

was not one of

the

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

52

learned women," but that she had intellectual interests,


gifts

in

art,

and

fine

administrative

Her

ability.

mother was the daughter of the noted archeologist,


Ulrich, born in Athens; thus Eucken's circle of friends

widened among

scientists

and

He

historians.

tinued to write books with cumulative power, like

con-

The

Life of the Spirit, Contributions to the History of

Modern

Philosophy, The Problem of

Viewed by

ophers

and the

or

monistic

Many

materialistic philos-

evolutionists,

German

Life's

Idealism.

own countrymen, who were

severely; he declared the

He

New

Life as

and

the Great Thinkers, Life's Basis

Ideals, Christianity

of his

Human

criticized

Eucken

press "ignored him."

popularized religious philosophy, especially under

such titles as

We

Still

lec-

The Truth of Religion, and Can


Be Christians? He was invited to deliver

tures in Holland, France, England,

Some of
the

and America.

award of

these later books followed the

Nobel prize

in

He

1908.

was

called "the winning

dark horse of that year"; he said that the honor came


as

a great surprise" to him.

As

further recognition

he was made a member of the Swedish Academy of


Sciences.

The comments

in the

noticeably restrained beside the

German

enthusiastic tributes

France, Holland, and England.

in

to
9

England and,
For further

titles,

later,

to

America

see bibliography

and

press were

list

In 191

he went

as academic lecof translators.

RUDOLF EUCKEN
turer; he

was "exchange professor" and gave

Harvard

at

53

Columbia

University,

Lowell Institute

lectures

University,

and Smith College.

at Boston,

the

His

wife and daughter came with him to America and were

homes of Professors Moore and Miin-

guests in the

sterburg at Cambridge.
cences will smile at

The reader

of his Reminis-

some of the comments upon Ameri-

cans and his reception here.


In Germany, with the
u
arrival of an exchange professor" and his first lecture,
a

demonstration of welcome, with formal pro-

gram and

the presence of notables in statescraft as well

there

is

He found no such condition at Harvard


He presented himself to President

as letters.

University.

Lowell and was


contrast he

told,

says,

"You may

begin at once."
President

with naivete,

Columbia University gave

banquet

Eucken and Bergson, who were lecturing


at the

same

friendly

had

ism and

contact

He

Roosevelt.
I

in

honor of

in

New York

the

says of the latter,

"With Roosevelt

very spirited conversation on American idealits

future, in which he gave

proof of consider-

He

found Americans,

Rudolf Eucken:

lated by Joseph

His Life,

Ibid., p.

11

Work and

McCabe, New York,

Charles Scribner's Sons.


11

Butler of

German scholar met


were Andrew Carnegie and

able historical knowledge."


10

By

time.

Among Americans whom


with

10

167.

Travels by himself, transBy permission of

1922, p. 162.

THE NOBEL

54

PRIZE WINNERS

as a class, alert but not well

German

especially

fairs,

informed on European

a trip to

hoping to carry into the Orient

Japan and China,

his principles of ideal-

philosophy; he sought cooperation of

istic

The war

"solving problems of life."

in

After he returned

history.

from America, he planned

af-

all

nations

interfered

with this project and caused him deep depression.

He

tried in every

istic

way

to appeal to the less material-

of his people.

traits

In

191

5,

he wrote The

Bearers of German Idealism, a book which sold copies

by the tens of thousands and supplemented,


his earlier

People.

ment

German

loyal

to

way,

volume, The Historical Significance of the

German
in

in a

He

found the war "the saddest mo-

history"

he

felt

the nations were dis-

His

themselves and sentiments of honor.

daughter, a musician of rare


ing the war.

gifts, lost

her lover dur-

In his sons, one a physician and another

a political economist,

Eucken saw examples of many

of his idealistic influences.

The

writings of Eucken, especially those of religious

trend, have been popular in America, as well as

land.

Several of his essays have been collected and

translated by Meyrick Booth.

brary of Living Thought

Judge Gibson and

and the

New

W.

is

In the Harper's Li-

the translation by Lucy

R. Boyce Gibson of his Christian-

(1909 and 191 2).


Meaning and Value of Life had one of the same

ity

Eng-

Idealism

The
trans-

RUDOLF EUCKEN

Joseph McCabe, who translated the autobiog-

lators;

has

raphy,

rendered,

Among

(1922).

Socialism:

also,

an Analysit

other books in constant

libraries are Religion

gave

55

and Life, the

demand

lectures which he

London, Oxford, and elsewhere, 191

in

at

1,

and

Modern Thought: a Theory of their Relawhich were the Deems lectures, delivered in 19 13

Ethics and
tions,

New York

at

University.

These are translated by

Margaret von Seydewitz from the German manuscript.

Can

We

(1914)
tianity,

Still
is

Be

Christians? with

its

challenging

title

a careful, tolerant study of historic Chris-

an advocacy of a religion which will adapt

itself to

the

demands of

daily

life.

Spirituality

and

morality must combine to form a high level of progress

and the Church must become "a repository of the


and tasks of

facts

life itself."

Comparisons have often been made between Eucken

and two other modern thinkers and writers on

ophy of kindred motive


Bergson.

The

former,

philos-

Adolf Harnack and Henri


who

has been professor at

Leipzig and Berlin, author of such stirring books as

What
the

and History of Dogma, has

Is Christianity?

German background

while Bergson, in his Creative

Philosophy has written an epoch-making book with


dissimilar

but

potent

deductions.

The two men,

Eucken and Bergson, have been discussed


criminating essay by E.

Hermann who

in

a dis-

thus summarizes

THE NOBEL

56

the message of the

PRIZE WINNERS

Nobel prize winner

"Eucken stands before

us today as perhaps the great-

idealism which satisfies our

no

idealistic

who

teacher

demands

for moral reality

philosophy has ever done, and as the

has most fully and boldly developed the

religious implications of ethical idealism.

phy of

life is

His philoso-

an insistence upon the supremacy of the

His defence of freedom

spiritual.

philosophy:

our age and the protagonist of a new

est thinker of

as

in

is

a doctrine of

spiritual liberty rooted in the saving initiative of

and our dependence on Him.


personality
sonality

from the thralldom of

self-centered

in-

12

Especially interesting
at

His vindication of our

the rescue of the free, God-centered per-

is

dividuality."

God

Stockholm,

March

is

the

Nobel Lecture, delivered


by Eucken, translated

27, 1909,

by Alban G. Widgery, Cambridge, 19 12 (W. Heffer

As an introductory thought, Eucken emphasizes that we are living in an age when tradition
has become a subject of doubt and new ideas are struggling to guide our lives.
The two terms, "Naturalism

and Sons).

or Idealism," which form the


dress,

have become confused

caused misunderstandings.

title

in

To

of this Nobel ad-

meaning and have


Eucken, Naturalism

12 Eucken and Bergson:


Their Significance for Christian Thought,
by E. Hermann, Boston, 1912, p. 87. By permission of The Pilgrim

Press.

RUDOLF EUCKEN
means "faith
accepts this

or

life

if

man's relation to Nature"; Idealism

in

but

faith

there

asks

the Beautiful" in
is

life,

upward;

it

may produce

the whole

is

life,

"The True,

the

also.

of

He

Good and

not merely utilitarian aspects.

does not find another world but

beyond that of

Idealism which deals with

one."

such expansion of daily

cause

this

not just a reflection of a given reality but a

striving
"it

if

not another kind of

is

pleads for domination of

Life

57

life

has no

classic times but

it

The

emphasized, be-

is

"we have been driven beyond

Naturalism."

new aims to-day


the standards of

task before literature

is

coopera-

tion in this effort to reach a higher level, "to purify

and confirm, to make the fundamental problems of our


spiritual existence impressive to us, to raise life

the

mere

above

transient culture, by the realization of some-

thing eternal."

This, as he interprets

of Alfred Nobel

in his will

the life purpose of

Eucken

it,

and awards;

as teacher

was the idea


this

has been

and writer.

CHAPTER

IV

BJORNSON: NORWEGIAN NOVELIST

AND PLAYWRIGHT
The

prize of 1903 has been

awarded:

Bjornson, Bjornstjerne, born

acknowledging

"as a tribute

works of

his

noble,

April 26,

19 10:

and varied

splendid

which have always been distinguished by fresh-

art

same time, by unusual purity

ness of inspiration, and, at the

of soul."

died

1832,

One of

the five

members

elected by the

Norwegian

Storthing, to select the winners of the prize for the

promotion of peace, under terms of Nobel's


Bjornstjerne Bjornson.

was

was

a vigorous advocate of

worker

When

in

the

all

was

a fitting choice for he

world peace, an ardent

causes for "the benefit of mankind."

award

in literature for

him, he was already

As

It

will,

known

as

1903 was given to

"Norway's Father."

writer of novels and plays, he had been read

more

widely than almost any other Scandinavian of his day,


time surpassing Ibsen

at

that

As

publicist

translated works.

and orator, as manager of theatres and

civic legislator,
1

in

he exerted national influence.

Inscription with the Nobel Prize

58

Award

In giv-

in Literature, 1903.

By

courtesy of The American-Scandinavian Foundation

BJORNSTERNE BJORNSON

BJORNSON: NORWEGIAN NOVELIST


ing

him

Nobel prize the adjudicators had

the

59

mem-

in

ory, especially, his earlier tales of peasant life which

intermingled poetic idealism with sagas and realistic

Norwegian

pictures of

Beyond Human

His plays of

life.

The Editor,

Power,

later years,

Sigurd

and

Slembe, were problem plays that awakened discussion


in

many

istic in

countries; they

tone than the earlier

remarkable

He

were more universal and

was

combination

Bjornson had

fiction.

of

real-

and gentleness.

virility

Viking clansman, as he often averred, but

he was also a poet, loving the folk songs and pictorial


delights of rugged

The symbol
his

He was

large,
a

to evil; he

with deep, ardent affection.

of his strength, represented twice in the

lingual root of his

for

Norway
name

fearless

Bjorn, a bear

mind and

was

spiritual

fitting

energy.

warrior when occasion demanded resistance

was

a skald

when he wrote

tales of peas-

antry.

He was

born

in

1832 at Kvikne,

in the valley

of the

Dovre Mountains. He lived seven years after the


Nobel prize was given to him, keeping his mentality
alert until

almost the end of his seventy-eight years.

His father was pastor


beauty of scenery or

was

six

marked

in

this

fertility

of

years old the family


contrasts, in

Romsdale.

small place, without


soil.

moved

When

the boy

to a region of

His memories of

picturesque scenery and his delights in the valleys;

this

hills.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

60
and

fjord,

were commemorated

the Lofty Mountains."

in his

poem, "Over

His school days

at

Molde

were busy and happy he read with insatiable appetite


;

for sagas and history,

and became devoted to the


Norwegian poet, Wergeland. At seventeen he went to

Here he

Christiania to prepare for the University.

was

schoolmate of Ibsen; with typical humor he

wrote

and

treasured

this

doggerel of these early

days:
Overstrained and lean, of the colour of gypsum,

Behind a beard, huge and black, was seen Henrik Ibsen.

The two

families

cemented

their friendship of

many

years by the marriage of Bjornson's daughter, Bergliot,

a singer of

At

talent, to the

Christiania, Bjornson

Danish
play,

much

son of Ibsen.

became much interested

literature, especially

drama, and he began

in

his

The Newly -married Couple, which was not

finished until a decade later.

a one-act play,

Between the

in Christiania with only

He

completed, however,

Battles,

moderate

which was staged

success.

For

a time

he abandoned drama and devoted himself to the peasant tales, to characters of types familiar to him, against
a

background of Norwegian folklore.

He

was proud

to recall that his forefathers were peasants; he

the

common

knew

people and sympathized with their customs

and ambitions.

He

sought to blend sagas and scenes

BJORNSON: NORWEGIAN NOVELIST


from modern

early stories of simple

A Happy
ceived in

life,

Arne, The Fisher Maiden,

Boy, and Synnove Solbakken, were well

Denmark and Germany,

commended

re-

own

as well as his

Soon they were translated

country.

spirit.

Those

with mutual interpretation.

life,

61

and

into English

for their simplicity, poetry, and national

Edmund

Sir

said of Bjornson:

Gosse, writing in the late 1880's,


u
His spirit was as masculine as a

Viking's

and as pure and tender

Through

these

little

maiden's.

as

romances there blows a wind as

fragrant and refreshing as the odour of the

Trondhjem

balsam willows, blown out to sea to welcome the newcomer; and just as
tells

this rare scent

the traveller of

son's novelettes

foreigner to

Norway,

usually the

is

Norwegian

in

first

his

to

so great throughout

from

believe

thing to attract a
2

later

reports.

Moreover, the

aspirations.

and

failed

as one

of Sir

to

is

inclined

"People loved the

critics

appreciate

know

him,

welfare or his

in his

found them
the

Edmund Gosse, Walter


Edmund Gosse.

Northern Studies by

By permission

of

of these peasant tales

Norway

nor were they deeply interested

study

excellent

peasant in the abstract" but they did not

mental

thing that

Creative Spirits of the Nineteenth Cen-

in

tury, affirms that the popularity

was not

first

so the purity of Bjorn-

literature."

Mr. Georg Brandes,


Bjornson

the

is

legends

Scott,

senti-

and

London, i&oo.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

62

were

parables

which

beautiful

symbolism

Arne with
heather
tales,

often
the

in

the several trees

seeking

interspersed,

story

of

juniper, oak, birch, and

to clothe the mountain.

Synnove Solbakken and

first

the

opening paragraphs

Artie,

sented two heroes of Norwegian


the

like

In the two

Bjornson repre-

life;

Thorbjorn of

was the youth of physical

virility,

de-

veloped by contact with gentler influences; Arne, by

was dreamy and

contrast,

There are

bust experiences.
in

Sir

this

story of

Arne

Edmund Gosse

rhymed

poetic, in

this

need of more ro-

wistful strains of

melody

yearning for the ideal.

has translated one of these lyrics

couplets:

Through

the forest the boy

For there he has heard such

wends

all

day long,

a wonderful song.

He carved him a flute of the willow tree,


And tried what the tune within it might be.
The

tune came out of

But while he

listened

it
it

sad and gay,


passed away.

He fell asleep, and once more it


And over his forehead it lovingly

He

thought he would catch

And

it

sung,

hung.

and wildly woke,

the tune in the frail night faded and broke.

"Oh God, my God, take me up to Thee,


For the tune Thou hast made is consuming

me."

in

BJORNSON: NORWEGIAN NOVELIST


And

said, " 'Tis a friend divine,

Lord God

the

Though never one hour


Yet

By

The

all

other music

is

shalt thou hold

thine.

poor and thin

the side of this which thou never shalt win."

Norway,

an individual and a national type; his

is

mother, Nargit,

is

one of the most

of Norwegian

tales,

and the

Boy,

is

Many

lighter,

fiction.

more

joyful

of these verses are found

in

two peasant

romance of

A Happy

in

Poems and Songs,

in this

typical

examples of

his

lyrics.

anthology are patriotic poems.

these, entitled
(

from the Nor-

the original meters. 4


"Synnove's Song,"
u
of Sunshine," and Ballad of Tailor Nils,"

from Arne, are

bakken

appealing

found some of the best poetry by Bjornson.

The Day

cluded

real,

In these

translated by Arthur Hubbell Palmer

wegian

who

break away from the rock-ribbed confines of

tries to

it

character of Arne, the poetic, restless boy

women

63

1859)

One of

Song of Norway," from Synnove


is

In-

Sol-

one of the most familiar of National

Songs, beginning,

Yes,

we love this land that towers


Where the ocean foams;

Rugged, stormswept,

Many
3

Ibid., p. 32.

By permission

American-Scandinavian
translator and publisher.
*

it

embowers

thousand homes.
of Sir

Edmund

Foundation,

Gosse.

1915.

By

permission

of

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

64

Love

it,

love

it,

you thinking,

of

Father, mother dear,

And

that night of saga sinking


to us here. 5

Dreamful

Thirty years

later,

for the silver

wedding

anni-

Herman Anker and his wife, Bjornson


wrote another poem of patriotic and idealistic strains,
versary of

beginning,

Land That Shall Be!


Thither, when thwarted our
Sighs to the clouds, that

Form

we

longings,

sail,

when we
and mead

breathe

a mirage of rich valley

Over our

we

fail,

need,

Visions revealing the future until

Faith shall

The

Ever

fulfill,

land that shall be!

after a visit to Upsala University and a longer

residence in Copenhagen,

Bjornson had cravings to

write and to direct plays.

In the latter position he

served for a time,

857-1 859,

at Bergen.

His

first

plays were of saga heroes and chieftains, like Hal-

vard of Between the Battles and Sigurd Slembe or


Sigurd the Bad.

They

possess militant virtues and

moral integrity but they are driven to misdeeds and


5

This has been adapted to song by Nordraak; another, "Forward,"


set to music by Grieg.
8 Poems and Songs by Bjornstjerne Bjornson, translated by Arthur
Hubbell Palmer, from the Norwegian in the original meters, London
1915. By permission of the American-Scandinavian Foundation.

has been

BJORNSON: NORWEGIAN NOVELIST

Thus

despair by opposition to their good intentions.

Sigurd

Harold

seeks

Gille, but

Mr. Brandes

make peace with

to

is

half-brother,

betrayed into revenge and murder.

suggests that in these plays the spiritual

sufferings of Bjornson

who

would elevate and har-

monize the Norwegian people but


derstood and rejected
analogy.

He

and Ibsen

in this

finds himself misun-

idealism

in his

stresses the difference

are revealed by

between Bjornson

respect and others; the former seek?

comradeship and unity; the latter


ture."

his

Bjornson portrays

between the two men,

With

fine distinctions

nature and literature,

in

"Henrik Ibsen

Brandes writes:

"solitary by na-

is

aspects of nature; Ibsen

all

seldom uses such descriptions.

is

prophet, the delightful herald of a better age.

depths of his nature, Ibsen


.

Bjornson's

is

loved the idea; Bjornson loved humanity.

Arthur Quiller-Couch,

Adventures

In the

His poetry sparkles with the

earnestness, seems to lurk in dark shadows."

in

mind; he wages war-

sunshine of April, while that of Ibsen, with

Sir

is

a great revolutionist.

is

a concilatory

fare without bitterness.

Mr.

a judge, stern as

one of the judges of Israel of old; Bjornson

65

in Criticism

in his

its

deep
Ibsen

study of Bjornson,

divides his writings into

Creative Spirits of the Nineteenth Century by Georg Brandes,


translated by Rasmus B. Anderson, New York, 1923, p- 345. By permission of Thomas Y. Crowell Co.
7

London and

New

York, 1925.

New

edition.

THE NOBEL

66

PRIZE WINNERS

three periods which he calls "simplicity, confusion and

The

dire confusion."

of

type,

idyllic

Happy Boy ;
the

group of

already considered

tales are those


in

and

in

The

the third, showing

more

exampled

self-conscious,

Maiden and Magnhild;

complications of thought and style, are like

The Heri-

tage of the Kurts (originally entitled Flags

The

and In God's Way.

ing)

and French

realists

vance

may

Other

in characterization

between

consider

Magnhild an

over any previous

him

and

ad-

fiction

Tande and

Magnhild.

woman may

author intends to show that a


in

German

in these later novels,

Bjornson, especially in the musician


relationship

Fly-

portrayal of polygamous

its

critics

Are

influence of

be traced

former with

especially the

conditions.

Arne and

the second represent a transition towards

realistic

Fisher

first

by
the

the

If

be happy

other ways than love, he does not "get the message

over" until

Mr. Brandes or

interpreted by

mingles

scenes of In God's

As

with

idealism

other

in

the

Way.

the years passed, Bjornson traveled on the con-

tinent, in

He

is

Rationalism

critics.
first

it

England and

to

America for

sharpened his outlook upon

his "passion for truth," his

life

a visit in

88

1.

but he never lost

hatred of oppression

in

any

form, his belief that individuals and nations might be


joined by friendship rather than separated by antag-

onisms.

He was

deeply impressed by certain forms


BJORNSON: NORWEGIAN NOVELIST
Norway and

of hypocrisy which he witnessed in

tional patriot

who

says,

but my country!"
"Norway must

be

My

country

right or

right

at

evils,

all

cost!"

with humor, of the

tell,

opponents among the young

wrong

his slogan,

His

plays,

made him unpopular with

and brought about threats of

politicians

his

Unlike the tradi-

Bjornson adopted as

which revealed innate

used to

he

The King,

attacked such abuses in the problem plays,

The Editor, and The Bankrupt.

67

visit

violence.

of some aggressive

men who threw

windows but went away singing

He

stones at

the refrain of his

National Song,

we

Yes,

As

dramatist,

love this land that towers, etc.

Bjornson attained a

skill

which

is

being recognized by students of to-day.

The Newly-

married Couple, which was, probably, the

first

be written

in

play to

original draft but held for later publi-

cation, has a psychological theme, well constructed

the adjustment necessary between the love of a

maiden

for her parents and the new, strange love for her hus-

The

band.

characters are vital and the lines effective.

Another early

play,

Lame Hulda

{Halt a Hulda),

was more emotionally intense; the heroine, lame for


twenty-four years, experiences a brief, tragic passion
for a
is

man whose

lack

of

those

love

is

pledged elsewhere.

There

comedy that

lighten

elements of

THE NOBEL

68

PRIZE WINNERS
To

The Newly -married Couple.

the lessons of

earlier period of play writing belongs,

also,

the

Maria

Stuart in Scotland, a brilliant retelling of the familiar

romance but lacking dramatic


Bjornson was always

situations at the close;

at his best in

ground; nevertheless John Knox


personality in this play.
flict

is

commanding

In this time of mental con-

between the ideal and the

affected his development, he

The Fisher Maiden, with

Scandinavian back-

realities in life as they

wrote that vigorous novel,

vivid characterization, and

one of his most pictorial poems, The Young Viking.

Truth
crisis

in life,

of the dramatist, in every

as depicted in his

The Bankrupt

The

demand

the

is

to

Gauntlet.

problem plays, from

With

skill

he shows

King, thwarted in his high ideals and his love,

trying to "serve the freedom of the spirit," to be a


true "citizen-king" but ending his life in despair be-

cause of the deceit of others.

strong character

in

The Bankrupt has

Berent, the lawyer; the "problem"

centers about the merchant's temptation to use the

money of

versy, because

satirized

The Editor aroused much

others.

it

contro-

was claimed that Bjornson had here

Swedish editor but the charge was un-

founded; rather the editor and

and Harald, typify

Mr. Brandes

his victims,

Halvadan

journalistic conditions in every land.

suggests that the dramatist

may have

been modeling these two brothers from the older poet,

BJORNSON: NORWEGIAN NOVELIST


Wergeland and
for

love

himself, in their struggles to create

and

truth

freedom.

Leonarda,

In

as dramatic qualities,

lyrical as well

message of more tolerance and

cance through
ciety.

Two

three

with

Bjornson spoke
historical

signifi-

generations of Norwegian so-

of his plays have

excellent translators

been Edwin

69

Bjorkman and R. Farquharson Sharp

(see bibliography).

By

and inclusion

translation

merit from

many

in

selected

Beyond

languages,

plays of

Human

Control

has become one of the most familiar of Bjornson's social

dramas.

It

is

one of the chosen plays

Contemporary Dramatists,
Dickinson.
differing

motifs

the

first

widely read and staged

is

Chief

by

Thomas H.

to this

drama, with

Series

There are two parts

in

I,

chronology and most

in

Beyond

Beyond Our Power: Over JEvne

I,

Human Power

(or

1883) dealing with

problems of religious faith and fanaticism; the second


part (Over ALvne

II,

1895) treats of differences of

opinion between labor and capital.

The

first

part, a

complete play, has been given throughout Europe and

was performed

in

New York

in

1902,

The

Patrick Campbell in the leading role.


ters

the
is

are

with

Mrs.

charac-

strongly balanced in interest; the wife of

self-sacrificing,

impractical

a masterly delineation of wifely loyalty

responsibility.

The Bishop

is

Clara

pastor,

well

Sang,

and maternal

drawn

in antithesis

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

7o

Pastor Sang.

to

Norway

because of

its

the

same standards of

It

is

less

Gauntlet created discussion

daring theme

social purity for

dramatically

effective

in

the advocacy of

men and women.

but

morally

it

is

vigorous.

Bjornson's later

work

in

drama

includes such

reading-plays as Laboremus, Daglannet, and

good

When

the

New Wine Blooms?

As examples of literary work


after the age of seventy, to which may be added the
story, Mary, 10 with emotional power, they stand as
testimonials to the vigor, mental and spiritual, of this

worthy "Viking" of our day.

Nobel

Code

prize, in accord with the proviso of the

of Statutes, he

theme, "Poetry

made

As

lapsed.

He

of trousers
like that

get

noteworthy address upon the

Manifestation of the Sense of

His own

Vital Surplus/'

"to

After he received the

vitality

and zest

in life

declared that the possession of a

in his

never

new

pair

old age gave him a sense of delight

of a child and he would get up an hour earlier


full

enjoyment of these clothes."

Bjorkman, one of the most

intuitive of his

lators, tells, in his Forces of

Tomorrow n

many

Edwin
trans-

incidents in

the later life of Bjornson that verify his childlike nature,

combined with

serious, passionate efforts for hu-

Translated by Lee M. Hollander, Poet Lore, 1911.


Translated by Mary Morison, 1910.
11 New York,
1913.

10

BJORNSON: NORWEGIAN NOVELIST


man
his

betterment.

His

amanuensis and

existed a rare

and on

wife, an actress by training,

critic;

71

was

between husband and wife

bond of sympathy:

at

formal dinners,

social occasions of varied kinds,

Bjornson

in-

sisted that his wife should sit at his right hand, in spite
of other conventions.
As writer, speaker, u lay

preacher," and civic adviser, Bjornson has an assured

rank

among "The

Century."

Creative Spirits of the Nineteenth

CHAPTER V
GIOSUE CARDUCCI ITALIAN POET
"The

prize of 1906 has been

awarded:

Carducci, Giosue, Professor in the History of Literature at


the University of Bologna, born 1835, died February 16, 1907:
"in consideration not only of his wide learning and critical research, but, in the first place, as

homage

to the plastic energy,

the freshness of style, and the lyric strength that distinguish his

poetry."

In

1906,

when he was seventy years

old,

Giouse

Carducci, the greatest of living Italian poets of that


time, for

more than two

score years professor at the

University of Bologna, was announced the winner of


the

Nobel prize

in

had

Mistral, the choice


influence,

pendent
country.

literature.

fallen

As

upon

in

the

case

of

a poet of patriotic

although the Italian was far more inde-

in spirit,

At

with

less

sentimental devotion to his

different periods he

had been

a critic of

both the Liberal and the Monarchial parties; sometimes he had seemed to be vacillating
convictions but he

in

his political

had always been an ardent patriot

for Italy of the past, with hopes for a future of greater

freedom and world


1

influence.

Inscription with the Nobel Prize

72

Award

in Literature,

1907.

GIOSUE CARDUCCI
Carducci was born at Val di

His

1835.

father,

before

was three years

the

moved

was

for political

When

son was born.

old, the family

July 27,

family,

who had been imprisoned

country doctor
activities

Castello,

Florentine

of a

73

Giosue

to Bolgheri, in

Tuscan Maremma; here the boy roamed about the


hills

his

and valleys for eleven years; he recalled some of


memories

childhood

He was

Maremma."
home;
to

his father taught

educated, in the

him Latin and

him from the poems of

lent conditions of

and he was sent

"Crossing

in

Alfieri.

the
first

his

Tuscan
place, at

mother read

After the turbu-

1848 the family moved to Florence

to the Scuole Pie; at eighteen, he

writing Sapphics and Alcaics,

in

which he urged a

turn to classic meters and early ideals of Italy.

was shown

vein of satire

church and

its

in

Byron, and Scott were

re-

His

mild attacks upon the

upon progress.

restrictions

was

his favorite

Schiller,

authors during a

part of this formative period.


In 1856 he
at the

was nominated

as Professor of Rhetoric

Gymnasium of San Miniato

became involved

He was

in political

al

Tedesco but he

and literary controversies.

refused government sanction to teach in a

position offered at Arezzo, so he returned to Florence.

He was

poor and lived

in

extreme self-denial,

fre-

quenting libraries, storing his mind with Greek and

Latin literature and finding some employment with

THE NOBEL

74

PRIZE WINNERS

the publisher, Barbera, for


notes,

etc.,

for

within a year

Italian

whom

he wrote prefaces,

Two

classics.

came

griefs

the suicide of his brother, Dante,

the death of his father.

In

memory

he wrote the lines "Alia memoria

di

and

of his brother

D. C."

Happier

days came when he married the gifted daughter of his


relative

and

friend,

He

stimulating and sympathetic.


to a

His home

Menicucci.

life

was

had four children;

daughter he gave the symbolic name of "Liberty."

Again death came to crush

his spirit; his little boy,

Dante, three years old, died the same year as Carducci's

mother.

had been

The

a loved

latter,

comrade

of

fine

Florentine family,

to her son;

and although

he was reconciled to her death in old age, he rebelled,


in

deep

grief,

at the loss of the little boy, declaring

"three parts of his life" had departed.


stanzas,

"Funere mersit acerbo,"

The

written in a

elegiac

mood

of longing for the child, are pathetic.

His poems,

as collected previous to

political agitation

many

and frequent bitterness and

of these had

Poloziano.

1870, showed

appeared

in

the

satire;

periodical,

//

In i860 he went to Pistoia as Professor

of Greek and Latin; there he wrote his poem, "Sicilia


e la rivoluzione," celebrating Garibaldi's Sicilian

pedition of that time.

Ex-

During the next ten years he

2 Found in original and translation in Carducci: a Selection


of His
Poems, etc. by G. L. Bickersteth, London, 1913, p. 141.

GIOSUE CARDUCCI

75

passed through political changes of allegiance; when


his

Hymn

mous

in a

Satan

to

"made him

appeared, and

day/' (republished

in

fa-

1869 over signature of

"Enotrio Romano") extolling the advance of Liberalism over the reactionary influences of both monarchy

and church, he was declared to be an unqualified Republican.

a daring motif that the poet chose

was

It

for his voice of "Revolt";

summon

that time, to

"lord

the

of

the

required courage,

it

at

as witnesses to the progress of

Satan,"

feast,

names

such

as

One
poem may

and Luther, Huss and Wycliffe.

Savonarola

reason for the immediate popularity of this

have been the flowing, almost

lilting,

form of four-

line stanzas.

Seven years before the publication of


Satan, Carducci

had become

identified,

Hymn

to

as professor,

with the University of Bologna; here he remained


until

his

cational

death

service.

period of forty-six years of edu-

The

first

offer

from Mamiani,

as

Minister of Education, was to the Turin Lycee but the


poet was unwilling to leave Tuscany.
delay the chair of elocution

was

open to him

students of
to

all

individual

appearance of
3

Ibid., p.

8.

types

at

and

Bologna.

After a

little

later of literature

His

influence

upon

was stimulating, always conducive

expression

Hymn

to

and

ambition.

Satan he was

in

After

marked

the
dis-

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

76

His

favor with the government.

high favor with the students, however, so that

"make

wise to

Latin

teach

at

change" by offering him


Naples.

ground that he was not

were

liberal ideas

Carducci

it

in

seemed

a position to

on

refused

qualified to teach Latin.

was prohibited from continuing classroom

the

He

instruction at

Bologna, on the ground of "constant opposition to


the acts of the

Government."

were quieted

Affairs

by a change of ministers and the poet, wisely, refrained

from promulgating
sity,

political doctrines in the

Univer-

or from giving dominance to them in his later

volumes of poems,

Nuove

like

poesie, in 1873.

sized duly the

more

Levia grandia,

Mr.

in

1867, and

Bickersteth has empha-

restrained, tender note in the later

volume, following soon after the loss of his mother

and

his

son.

So different were the

lyrics

from

his

previous type, so surely did they show the influence


of Goethe, Schiller, and Heine, in romanticism, that

some

critics

accused Carducci of being a mere imitator,

or even a plagiarist.

This challenge aroused

his ever-

present spirit and he wrote the prose defense, with

broad as well as personal comment, Critica ed

As

lecturer,

students

arte.

he became yearly more popular and

from distant places hastened

He was one of
Dante.
When Rome

to

come under

his inspiration.

the noteworthy ex-

ponents of

established a chair

of Dante Exigesis, Carducci was appointed as pro-


GIOSUE CARDUCCI
Although sorry

fessor.

to lose

him

77

He

whole country applauded the honor.


because he was not in accord with those

Dante by contemporary
had founded the chair

who

Rome.

at

courses of lectures

each year.

was an

make

effort to

by the anti-Papal party.


discourse he said,

first

hesitated,

interpreted

political conditions, those

who

Later he became

who gave

one of "four leading Dante scholars"

there

Bologna, the

at

At

his

first

short

lecture

a political demonstration

Among

his sentences at this

"Papacy and Empire,

their

discord and their power, were passing

away when

Dante

pass away."

Dante was born

who does not

In an earlier sonnet, published in essays in 1874, he

had interpreted what he believed were Dante's views


and the reason for

his

Dante, whence comes

immortal fame
that

it

4
:

my vows and

voice,

Adoring thy proud lineaments I raise;


verse, which made thee lean and wan,

That, o'er thy

The
I

sun

may

set,

the

new dawn

me

still?

Holy Empire with my sword


should have thrust the crown from off the head

hate thy

Of

thy good Frederick in Olona's vale.

O'er church and Empire, both

Thy

song soars up, and high

Though Jove may

With one of
4 Italian

New

finds

p.

24.

in

die, the poet's

those

Influences:

York, 1901,

now

ruins sad,

heaven resounds

hymn

remains.

marked changes

in his

impulses

Carducci and Dante by Eugene Schuyler,


By permission of Charles Scribner's Sons.

THE NOBEL

78

PRIZE WINNERS

and convictions which ever characterized Carducci, he


broke away from tendencies towards German Roman-

and declared

ticism

pose
1

in

a "literary revolution" as his pur-

writing his most familiar odes, Odi barbare,

Back

873-1 877.

to the poetry of

he would lead the people,

away from

To

and "sickly sentimentalism."

And Targioni, who were


declared that the

Homer,

Pindar,
5

tophanes.
this

Mr.

the romanticists

his friends, Chiarini

of

critics

Theocritus,

these

odes,

he

several

and Aris-

Sophocles,

meter

a great variety of

poems

seemed, to the hackneyed


form.

Rome

world's greatest poets had been

There was

collection;

Greece and

that

critics,

lacked

rhymes

unconventional

Bickersteth has informing

in

in

comments upon

Carducci's Metres in the Barbarian Odes and other

poems,

in his

already cited.

Introduction to his Selection of Poems,

Among

the

examples of the Italian

poet at his best, his most simple,


lines,

"The

one recalls from


Ideal,"

flexible,

this collection such verses

"The Mother," and "By

Percy Bysshe Shelley."

and musical

the

Addressing one of

Urn

as

of

his imagi-

nary Greek women, Lalage, he unfolds his own deep,


loving appreciation of the English poet in such couplets
as these
5

Impressioni e ricordi by Chiarini, p. 237.


Carducci: a Selection of His Poems by G. L. Bickersteth, Copyright by Longmans, Green & Co., London and New York, 1913.
By
permission of Longmans, Green & Co.
6

GIOSUE CARDUCCI
Vain ar? the joys of the

present, they

79

come and they fade

like

a blossom,

Only

in death dwells the truth

Lo, on the

And

mount

and

loveliness but in past days.

of the centuries Clio hath nimbly descended,

bursts into song as she spreads her magnificent wings to

the sky.

heart of hearts, o'er this urn, thy cold, uncongenial prison,

The warm
and

spring blossoms again with the fragrance of flower

fruit.

heart of hearts, thy divine great father, the Sun, hath arisen,

And

lovingly bathes thee in light, poor heart that forever art

mute.

This poem, inspired by the grave of Shelley,

one

is

of the most beautiful and appealing of the odes to him


;

the English poet was, in truth, "Poet of liberty," with


a

"spirit

Titanic.'

In

of the simplicity and

spite

directness of Carducci's diction his

many

poems have

translators, especially in English.

ing to note that two of his

German

been winners of the Nobel prize

defied

It is interest-

translators have

in literature,

Paul

Heyse and Theodor Mommsen.


In this same volume, Odi barbare, was a

poem which

attracted wide attention in Italy and aroused

indignation

among

had Republican

"To
it

the former friends of Carducci

principles.

the Queen," dated

was

essentially

some

It

was the

November

who

tribute entitled

20, 1878.

While

an effusion to the grace, beauty, and

THE NOBEL

80

literary gifts of
it

PRIZE WINNERS

Queen Marguerite

resounded with the Hail

as an individual,

("Long Live

I")

which has

come down from Hebrew days for king and queen.


Although

a Liberal to the

end of

and gentler

in

friend in political

Carducci

from

The

spirit.

life,

alliance

Carducci

grew

as he

influence

of

his

caused a reaction

Crispi,

with

life,

monarchy

relinquished his antagonism to

older

his

Republicanism,

in

which

veered towards Socialism, and an alignment again with


the monarchical party.
litical

The

change was chronicled

Albert Charles

in

final

in

pledge of this po-

the tribute to King

the poem, "Piedmonte," in

1890.

In the same year the poet was elected as senator and


served for a brief time.

an ideal for

To him

art, literature

and

Liberty

now became

religion, as well as for

the State.

Although the more serious interpreters of Carducci's


political fluctuations trace the gradual,

steps

from hatred of monarchy

to

and reasonable,
acceptance

and

even poetic homage, there are other commentators

who give a romantic flavor to the change of attitude.


They declare that the new allegiance may be explained
by a visit that the King and Queen made to Bologna.
Carducci was lame
socially;

and disinclined to meet people

he was immersed

in

books and a few

his

friends, outside his University classes.

that

Queen Marguerite, who was

The

story runs

a literary critic

and

GIOSUE CARDUCCI
sponsor of the

summons

is

He came

unwillingly.

inspired

invited the poet to an audience.

arts,

Such an invitation

81

but Carducci went

away, however, from the

visit

by the Queen's appreciative sympathy and

"Eterno

to

him

passed

be-

Thenceforward she was

her literary insight.

femminino

Regale."

Letters

tween the Queen and the poet.

Their friendship has

been compared to that of Michelangelo and Vittoria

Colonna,

As

in inspirational quality.

the years passed the

Queen was

able to serve

both the poet and her country, for Carducci's health

and finances became impaired.


a

In 1899 he suffered

stroke of paralysis which crippled

work

but he continued his

him somewhat

at the University, assisted

by his favorite pupil, the poet Severino Ferrari.


he might not be obliged to

Queen purchased
might use
purchased

garden,

some of

him

his

After his death she

life.

home,

and gave

also,

this to the Italian

Casa Carducci," with a beauti-

adorned with statuary that symbolizes


poems.

a pension

him with

with the arrangement that he

this,

people as a memorial,
ful

valuable library the

during his

it

his

sell his

That

In

1904 the government gave

and the University students honored

a celebration.

The

next year the sudden

death of his assistant, Ferrari, was a terrible loss to

him and
the

left

him enfeebled

in

body and

Nobel prize was awarded

spirit.

When

the next year, he

was

THE NOBEL

82

PRIZE WINNERS

unable to leave his chair to receive

Sweden
monial

it;

Bologna to give the

sent a deputy to

He

person to the aged poet.

in

two months after

this

honor;

was attended by thousands.


him

tomb

testi-

lived only

Bologna

his funeral at

Because of his Florentine

descent and his literary rank,


offered for

King of

the

in

the city of

Florence

Croce, the

Sta.

Italian

Pantheon, but his family preferred a burial place just


outside Bologna.

As

poet Carducci mingled vigor and grace to

He

an unusual degree.
ceptions and

His

classical

studies,

artist

historical

odes,

un-

resultant

from

his

wistful sadness

life, a

mood

question.

is

found

in

Maremma," "Be-

"Primo Vere" which

are found in translations by Mrs.

from

left

are less impressive than such lyrics

fore San Guido," "Virgil," and

nature and

in his con-

poem

as "Night," "Fiesole," "Idyll of the

both
a

forms; he never

his

finished.

was an

many

Maud

Holland. 7

of his poems of

sensitiveness to insincerity, a change

of hopefulness to that of longing and

Such poetic

"Primo Vere,"

traits are

marked

in the

poem,

a delicate spring-song with gentle sad-

ness;
Behold! from sluggish winter's arms
Spring

lifts

herself again;

7 Poems by Giosue Carducci: v\th n introduction and translations


by Ma-j'J Holland, New York, 1907.

GIOSUE CARDUCCI
Naked
She

83

before the steel-cold air

shivers,

as

Look, Lalage,

in

pain,

that a tear

is

In the sun's eye that shines so clear?

Today my

and dreams,

spirit sleeps

Where do my

far thoughts fly?

Close to thy beauty's face

And

we

and

smile, the spring

stand

I:

Yet, Lalage, whence come those tears?

Has

Spring, too, felt the

doom

of years?

In his old age Carducci declared that "his guiding


principles

had been three

things; in art, classical poetry before

and strength before

life, sincerity

mellowed

in his political

before

in politics, Italy

things; in

all

things."

all

opinions, so he

icism

In truth,

it

As he

became

vehement against the church and Christianity


writings.

all

less

in later

was not Christianity but

ascet-

Like many

and bigotry which he combated.

poets he regretted the loss of some of the best marks


of pure paganism; he found in
contrast

in

with

many

it

evidences

truth and freedom,

of

falsehood and

slavery in the Christian world of his day.

not always get a vision of

life

as a whole,

segment which was sometimes distorted

He was more

interested in historical

than in creative types.


8

Edinburgh Review, April,

Italy
1909.

Publication Co.
9

Ibid.,

"The Poetry

of Carducci."

He

did

only a

in perspective.

and poetic

figures

of the past and her

By permission

of

Leonard

Scott

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

84

classic literature

were

his ideals in his later writings.

Rejecting romanticism as exotic, he pleaded for "the


representation of reality with truth."

of his aim and

with

written
reality,

considered from the

controls his treatment of

poetry, as will at once

for instance
his

he held

own time

all

artistic

conception

it

of

point of view,

the chief themes of his

become apparent

closely.

all

Bickersteth has

"Carducci's

lucidity:

any of these at

Mr.

fulfillment,

its

summary

In

if

we examine

Man, Nature,

Liberty,

incumbent upon the poets of

to deal mainly with these three,

and they

constitute accordingly a large portion of the subject-

own

matter of his

word

verse."

It

is

difficult

to identify

much of Carducci's poetry


for he was strongly realistic in his
about women
love poems, in general, often compared to Walt
the

idealism with

Whitman

in his

of woman.

emphasis of the physical attractiveness

Again, he too often failed

to adapt old Latin


flections.

In

spite

in his efforts

forms to modern themes and


of such

defects,

however,

ducci's poetry at his best, his earnest patriotism


his

hopes for

Italy,

reflects

country,

his

says

re-

Car-

and

Mr.

Bickersteth, "in her purest and serenest aspect, and

her ideals linked on to many,


cherished traditions of her past."
10

and

if

not

all,

the most

10

Carducci: a Selection of His Poems by G. L. Bickersteth, London


New York, 1913. By permission of Longmans, Green & Co.

CHAPTER

VI

THE WRITINGS OF RUDYARD KIPLING


BEFORE AND AFTER THE AWARD
The

awarded:

prize of 1907 has been

power
the manly

Kipling, Rudyard, born 1865: "in consideration of the


of observation, originality of imagination,

and

also

strength in the art of perception and delineation that characterize the writings of this

world-renowned author."

Six years passed after the


literature

first

prizes were given in

from the Nobel fund; the countries honored

thus far had been France, Germany,


Italy,

and Poland.

literary

Where

map?" asked

is

certain

Norway, Spain,

Great Britain on the


speakers and writers.

Names

of British authors had been sent to the

mittee

of the

Nobel Foundation and the Swedish

Academy, with ardent commendation by


and academic
suggested

circles.

in the press,

Robert Bridges.

the
1

One

had been Swinburne, George

Thomas Hardy,

journal asked,

The answer came

award

for 1907

individuals

Prominent among such names,

Meredith, John Morley,

ling?"

Com-

in the

was given

Inscription with the Nebel Prize

8s

to

"Why

not Kip-

announcement that

Rudyard

Award

Barrie, and

Kipling, poet

in Literature, 1907.


THE NOBEL

86

and

PRIZE WINNERS

Again the

story-teller.

issue,

"What

is

Ideal-

ism?" was raised and challenged by some opponents of


this choice yet,

on the whole,

met with wide favor.

it

was defended;

Kipling's type of robust idealism

W.

B. Parker,

than

the

boys."

said

"His idealism needs no other evidence

had from

has

he

following

enthusiastic

Combined with

robust idealism are two other

this

qualities of Kipling as writer, that

enthusiastic

following

boys"

of

For adolescents and

courage.

have given him "the

his

and

virility

college youths he has

upheld the ideals of vigorous action, of honor and


bravery,

of

daring

dynamic poems and


Life's

and

speech

in

tales of

In

deed.

his

The Day's Work, Kim,

Handicap, and the other volumes so familiar,

he reflects his "gospel" of fearlessness, that does not


hesitate to shock

some who abide by the conventional


Gilbert K. Chesterton has said

standards of speech.

forceful truths about this trait of Kipling in Heretics:

he affirms that credit


ciation of slang

thus:

Slang

be, if

may

product of language.
the few

due to Kipling for his appre-

He

and steam.

"Steam may

of science.

is

who saw

you

be,

But

by-product

like, a dirty

you

like,

at least he has

dirty by-

been among

the living parentage of these things

and knew that where there


2

if

expands the thought

World's Work, February, 1908.

is

smoke, there

is

fire

By

courtesy of Doublcday, Page

&

Co.

RUDYARD KIPLING

Photograph by E. O. Hoppe

WRITINGS OF RUDYARD KIPLING


that

wherever there

is,

also,

the purest."

is

the foulest of things there,

is

Mr. Chesterton

Kipling's type of courage

87

is

declares that

not that of war, nor valor

of the battle-field, but "that interdependence and efficiency

which belongs quite as much to engineers, or

sailors,

or mules, or railway engineers."

Recurrent

memory are such tales as "The Bridge-Builders,"


"The Ship That Found Herself," ".007," "With the

in

Night Mail" and "Wireless."

One

trait

sharply differentiates Kipling from some

among

of his colleagues

He

is

Nobel prize winners.

a patriot-poet but with less ardent tribute than

found

is

the

in

Heidenstam.

the verse of Mistral and Bjornson and

Perhaps

open

his

criticism of his coun-

try in certain political crises has barred

laureateship.
later years,

His

frank,

somewhat

in

democratic

him from the


attitude

in

contrast with earlier utter-

ances of imperialism, finds expression in every stanza

of

"A

Pilgrim's

Way."

Few

poets, however, have

written such magnetic lines in urgence of "fitness,"

honor and service for country as has Kipling,


familiar

words of "If," "For All

We

Have and Are,"


refrain in the poem

"The Children's Song," and the


in Land and Sea
Tales for Scouts
masters
3

Heretics by Gilbert K. Chesterton, London and


By permission of Dodd, Mead & Co.

1919..

in the

and

New

Scout-

York, 1915,


THE NOBEL

88

Be

He

fit

be
fit

PRIZE WINNERS

for honour's sake be

world knowledge of

patriotic with the

is

man; two examples

eled

fit!

in

proof are found

a travin

"The

Return" and "The English Flag," with the pertinent


query

And what

know

should they

of

England who only England

know?
In recent years

it

has been a "fad"

in certain jour-

nals to depreciate Kipling and to charge against


faults of

narrowness

in

outlook and lack of modern-

war and

Especially during the years of the

ism.

him

its

immediate aftermath one found tones of sad, some-

what

personal

to the

son.

In large measure this was due

cynical writing.

That

19 1 8,"

will

of the time and the loss of his

trials

elegiac
live

his speech at the

as

"My Boy

poem,
a

Jack;

19 14-

heart-gripping memorial.

Sorbonne,

November

19,

gave evidences of spiritual recovery; he

In

1921, he

said,

"One

cannot resume a broken world as easily as one can

resume a broken sentence.

who have
abolish

spent themselves in suffering and toiling to

the

menace of barbarism

from the menace of moral


sprightliness

the stanzas
visit to

But before long our sons

recover also

With

old-time

in the spring

of 1924,

lassitude."

and vigor he wrote,

"A Song

will

of the French Roads," after a

France and the joyful experience of finding

WRITINGS OF RUDYARD KIPLING


had been

the roads to the border, that

89

laid out

by

Napoleon and devastated by the war, were now

re-

paired and open to


It

who

traffic.

was the Kipling of the


Nobel

received the

earlier years of writing

He

prize.

was forty-two

He had

years old, one of the youngest winners.

ready published volumes of prose

would be creditable

Born

at

Bombay, December

John Lockwood Kipling, an

a delightful story-teller

technical

some of

artist,

and

artistic

father,

at that time

and expertly trained

knowledge.

his son's earlier tales; a

Beast and

was

His

Lahore School of Industrial Art.

Director of the

in

age.

1865, he inherited

30,

promise from both parents.

intellectual

He was

and verse that

writer of twice his

to

al-

Man in India, with

He

illustrated

book by him,

entitled

unusual drawings, was

at-

Rudyard Kipling (London, 1891). Alice


MacDonald, the mother, gave to her son a keen zest

tributed to

in life

and

had many

a rare sense of
lines of

Her

humor.

devotion has

commemoration notably
:

in

such a

poem as "Mother O' Mine."


The boy was named Joseph Rudyard but he seldom
used the first name.
The second, in memory of a lake
in

England where

his father

so arresting and unique that


the causes of his
* Literary Digest, July

first

5,

and mother had met,


it

is

has been called one of

appeal to the curious public.

1924.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

9o

After his early boyhood

in

him

India, leaving with

strong impressions and love for the land, he was sent

and

to Southsea, Devonshire, to school

United Services College


homesick for

his

later to the

He was

Westward Ho.

at

mother and found

well with the English-born boys.

mix

difficult to

it

Stalky

largely autobiographical of this period.

Co.

Cf?

is

In 1880 he

returned to India, anxious to enter journalism and

know

The

the native people, especially in the army.

when Kipling was doing journalLahore, the Duke of Connaught visited

story runs that once,


istic

work

in

the place and asked the

The

prefer to do in India.

would

like, sir, to live

years

up

Tommy

was granted and the


are

listed

in

reply

came promptly, "I

with the army for a time, and go

to the frontier to write

quest

young man what he would

Atkins."

literary

Department

Three, Under the Deodars, and

results

The
in

re-

later

Ditties,

Soldiers

many more

stories in

volumes, from Plain Tales from the Hills to Eyes of


Asia.

Much

discussion has been rife about the truth or

exaggeration of Kipling's pictures of India, especially


types of

army men and

who have

officers'

wives.

Many

critics,

traveled in India, affirm the photographic

quality of the tales

of the tone

is

it

and verse but some


sincere or sardonic?

raise the issue

Others,

claim to have talked with certain "natives,"

who

condemn

WRITINGS OF RUDYARD KIPLING


both the

spirit

91

To

and the characterizations.

the

charge of insincerity or disloyalty there seems to be a


firm answer in the friendly Prelude to
Ditties,

which has a prominent place

Edition of Rudyard Kipling's Verse.

upon "the

the last stanza,

in

Departmental

in the Inclusive

He

lays stress,

jesting guise" but he

emphasizes, also, his loyalty to these people, especially

second stanza

in the

Was
In

One

there

aught

that

did

joy or

Dear

woe

that I did not

hearts across the seas

work and

journalistic

and military representatives

Mandalay, he was writing

in

know,

During these years from 1882

was doing

not share

vigil or toil or ease,

to

1889, while he

associating with civil

Lahore, Bombay, and

stories

and verses which

in

the newspaper columns of India.

first issue in

book form was by A. H. Wheeler

appeared

of Allahabad, a

was sold

little

book

in

The

&

Co.

gray paper covers which

at railway stations.

In his

own hand and

with striking illustrations, Kipling edited some of his


early tales; one such,

"Wee

Willie Winkie," dedicated

to his mother, with others that


set,"

found

formed "an

a purchaser in J. Pierpont

illustrated

Morgan,

in re-

cent years at a price stated to be $ 1 7,000. 6


5

Rudyard

1924, p.
6

3.

Kipling's Verse:

By permission

Bookman, 25:

561.

of

Inclusive Edition, Garden City, N. Y.,


Mr. Kipling and Doubleday, Page & Co

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

92

When

Kipling was twenty-five years old, with his

memory packed with


and

acters in India,
tales

scenes of adventure and char-

his pockets filled

and verse, he decided to try

his literary fate in

way of the Pacific to Caland reached New York with hopes of editorial

England.
ifornia

He

with unpublished

traveled by

encouragement because he had

He was

letters of introduction.

not received with cordiality; perhaps in later

years some of these editors and publishers regretted


their lost chance to launch a

new

In London,

genius.

he attracted attention slowly but, with influence from


family and

officials,

he

won

recognition by critics and

One of the first to appreciate Kipling's unique work was Andrew Lang; later he was
severe in criticism of certain faults.
One of his essays
reading-public.

upon Kipling of the


in Little (Scribner's,

an emphasis of

earlier Tales

1891).

It

is

included in Essays

has a prophetic note,

the brilliance of colour," the strange,

varied themes, the "perfume of the East."

The Nobel

prize

was given

to Kipling because of

these qualities of his earlier work, as well as his

mature, potent messages.

He

had,

from the

more
first,

rare ability to revivify, to secure for future generations

of readers the real and the romantic


of the later nineteenth century.

He

in

Anglo-India

preserved the

landscapes, the customs, the ideals, the intrigues, the


foibles,

even the slang of the natives and the British

WRITINGS OF RUDYARD KIPLING

93

Mistral saved the language

and

soldiers.

Just as

romances of Provence from oblivion,

and other poems;

just as

Mireio

his

in

Bjornson recorded the almost

Norway and blended these with


life; so Kipling made literary use of

forgotten sagas of

modern, peasant
this

unfamiliar material of India.

His idealism con-

verted the ordinary, often petty and rough aspects

of

into

life,

stories

and verses of undying

flavor,

"The Phantom Rickshaw," Soldiers Three,


"Drums of the Fore and Aft," "On the City Wall,"
"M'Andrew's Hymn," "Danny Deever," "Mandalay"
and "The Lover's Litany." Here are recorded days
of adventure and danger, nights of memory and longlike

In

ing.

India,

1902, more than ten years after he left

he wrote one of his most appealing poems,

"The Broken Men,"


their pluck

from England with

the exiles

and their pathos, which grips the sym-

pathies like those tales of O.

Henry about

Amer-

the

ican self-imposed "exiles" in Central America.

The

made

later visit that Kipling

to the

United

States cheered his heart, in contrast to the earlier re-

He had

ception.

Wolcott

met Caroline

Balestier, a

became intimate
laborated in the

Balestier,

young man with

London and with


novel, The Naulahka.

was

in

tier

was married

in

Brattleboro, Vermont.
to

Kipling

sister

whom
whom

of

Kipling

he

col-

Their home

In 1892 Miss Balesin

All Soul's Church,

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

94

They came

Portland Place, London.

few years

live for a

for

built

in the

bride

his

to

Vermont

to

unique house, which Kipling

overlooking

Brattleboro.

Sir

Arthur Conan Doyle accredits him with "chivalrous


devotion" to his wife, which caused him to come to

America

might miss her home and

lest she

friends.

Before coming to America they took a journey "round


the world," or a segment of
Balestier

was

American

Room

deep grief to

literature.

The death

it.

his friend

of Wolcott

and

a loss to

In dedicatory elegy (Barrack-

Ballads) Kipling wrote the lines of noble char-

acterization:
E'en as he trod that day to

God

so

walked he from

his birth,

In simpleness and gentleness and honour and clean mirth. 8

For the

little

daughter,

Kipling wrote his

first

who

died at an early age,

Jungle Book.

In this

Amer-

home he wrote, also, many of the poems collected


The Seven Seas and the short stories, Many Inven-

ican
in

tions.

In the latter book were the daring pictures of

"The Disturber of Traffic," the haunting


tale of "The Lost Legion," and the tragic "Love o'
Women." The inspiration of Mrs. Kipling, her

life

like

perfect appreciation of her husband's gifts and moods,

and her gracious influence have been attested by him


7

Memories and Adventures by

1924.
8

By permission

of

Mr. Kipling.

Sir

Arthur Conan Doyle, Boston,

WRITINGS OF RUDYARD KIPLING


in

many

sonal

tender words, as well as

tributes

which one

womanhood

to

expressed

finds

"His Chance

of brains

From Sea

in

The world

Life."

in

the persistent story that Mrs.

Recessional."

some of

In

his

and heart,
to

Sea or

never forget

will

Kipling saved,

hymn

the wastebasket, that grand

more imper-

the

in

of

95

all

time,

from

"The

he antagonized

tales

The Light That Failed and


"An Habitation Enforced" in Actions and Reactions;

Americans, notably

in

as compensation one recalls

"An Error

of the Fourth

Dimension" from Plain Tales, the story of Wilton


Sargent, American.

The

writing of Kipling showed advance in

There was

during the decade from 1890 to 1900.


gradual

elimination

of

which tainted some of

experience
his

in

tale

riding on a

".007,"

and

jingoism

his earlier

South Africa again.

visited

in

the

He

form

work.

cynicism

In 1897 he

recounted an actual

Cape Government Railway

among

the stories in

The Day's

Work, published in 1898. In this same collection is


found "The Brushwood Boy," a masterpiece of mystic
idealism which will stand beside his more poetic
allegory, "They."
The year 1899 has been regarded
sometimes as a
affected

York,

his

crisis

later

in the late

in

writing.

the life of

On

his

Kipling which

arrival

in

New

autumn of that year, he was attacked

by a severe case of pneumonia and was desperately

ill

THE NOBEL

96
for

many

The

weeks.

PRIZE WINNERS
press of America, England,

and the Continent awaited the bulletins with anxiety.

He

recovered but some

lost his vigor

and

warranted.

Looking over the

literary power.

dates of his poems,

have appeared

have affirmed that he

critics

and recalling the books which

since this crisis, such a surmise

One

is

not

could scarcely expect that any au-

thor could continue to write, on a level or ascending

many more books about India than he had already written or many more poems of vital spell like
scale,

"If,"

"When

Earth's Last Picture

Painted," and

is

"M'Andrew's Hymn."

He

had already proved

children

and

write

for

Few books among

ju-

his

adolescents.

veniles surpass, in visualization

The Jungle Books, Just So

ability

to

and imaginative

skill,

and that pioneer

Stories,

sea tale that has gained favor with the years, Captains

Courageous.
illness,

in

In the years that followed his serious

he wrote tales of clever inventiveness collected

Puck of Pook

To

this

Hill,

Rewards and

period belong, also,

lected in the volume,

many

Fairies,

and Kim.

of the poems

col-

Who

will

The Five Nations.

say that there was decadence of literary power, any


lapse of dramatic
ball

O'Hara,

boys of to-day

skill, in

the

that story of

orphan

and

normal

boy
girls

of

Kim, or Kim-

Lahore?

have

"thrills" at this lad's story, his pilgrimages

The

wholesome
over India


WRITINGS OF RUDYARD KIPLING
with the Tibetan lama, and his

final

97

adoption by the

regiment to which his father had belonged.

Humor,

adventure, vivid photographs of places and people

When

are mingled in this tale.

all

London

the

it

appeared

in

1901, the father of Kipling

edition of

contributed some of the striking illustrations.

The Five Nations of this later period gave permanence in form to such vital poems as "White
Horses," "Our Lady of the Snows" (the beautiful ode
to

Canada), u The Dykes," 'The Feet of the Young

"The Explorer," and "The Recessional."


"Buddha at Kamakura," which first appeared in Kim, should be listed in this collection. Are

Men,"

"Boots,"

there here

form or spontaneity

of lapse in

traces

compared with the

earlier,

less

restrained verses in

Departmental Ditties or Barrack-Room Ballads?


Traffics

such

and Discoveries, published

literary

and "The
his

keen

in

1904, are found

achievements as "Wireless,"

Army

of a Dream."

observation,

humor,

In

"They,"

Kipling had shown

and

appreciation

of

varied beauties of Nature in his volumes of travelsketches and letters,

Travel.
fine

From Sea

"In Sight of Monadnock" contains a brief,

description of that distant

With

his

Sea and Letters of

to

long experience

diverse conditions of

life,

New Hampshire

in travel

peak.

and adjustment to

Kipling has ever been a poet

of home, national and domestic.

His poem, "Sussex,"

THE NOBEL

98

PRIZE WINNERS

written in 1902, has deep feeling as well as notable


lines of description

New

and

rhythmic swing.

poets and story-writers came into prominence

Although Kipling was

with the twentieth century.


his full

in

maturity and vigor when the Nobel prize was

awarded, with years of promising, creative work be-

had been

fore him, he
it

to

became the fashion,

so long before the public that

some

in

brilliant, cynical

groups,

speak of him as belonging to the older generation.

His volumes attracted

less

attention in

with those of mere "modernism.

1
'

competition

The announcement

of the Nobel prize, in 1907, aroused interest anew in

every country.

In looking over the

graphical cards, in the


University,
tions of his

man,

it

is

Widener Library

at

Harvard

interesting to find records of transla-

books into Danish, Dutch, French, Ger-

Italian,

Spanish,

Kipling biblio-

Norwegian, Polish, Russian, Serbian,

Swedish.

The

journals

review what he had accomplished

took

occasion

in literature

to

before

commend or reprove the decision of the


Swedish Academy in giving him a prize for "idealSome cited his imperialistic "comistic" literature.
plex" and quoted "The Man Who Would Be King."
1907,

to

In Current Literature for October, 1908, are quotations


tion:

London Nahardly any English writer more

from diverse opinions:


"There

is

Said the

closely identified with the doctrine of force or a firmer

WRITINGS OF RUDYARD KIPLING


believer that the Deity

big

declared,

sings of blood-lust, with a schoolboy's disregard

The Chicago Post

of consequences."
his

found on the side of the

to be

The New York World

battalions."

"He

is

99

was

idealism

the idealization

believed that

of might" but

it

praised his strong, Biblical English.

Comments

of this kind

paradoxical traits

in

fail

to recognize the two,

nature and writings.

Kipling's

The
Courtship of Dinah Shadd," "The Gate of a Hundred
Sorrows," "My Son's Wife," or poems like "The Galley-Slave,"
"Danny Deever," and "Kitchener's
There

is

stark realism, sometimes relentless, as in

Close beside this realism, penetrating and

School."

often sordid, sounds a note of idealism, a promise of

"a happy issue

comes to an
there

is

out of

idealist.

all

troubles,"

Recall that in

the tense, realistic tale of

Deep Sea,"

that

vision

The Day's Work,

"The Devil and

and, within a few pages, the idyll of

the

"The

Brushwood Boy."
Since

the

Nobel prize was

received,

written with less frequency and

form.
like

Some of

more unevenness of

the prose and verse reflects the war,

"Fringes of the Fleet," "Sea Warfare," "France,"

and the "History of the Irish Guards."


forgotten will be that tribute to

and

Kipling has

virile,

"Great-Heart" (19 19).

Not soon

Roosevelt,

tender

In the collected

poems, The Years Between, there are challenging war


THE NOBEL

ioo

PRIZE WINNERS

We

Have and Are," an appeal to


England, and "The Choice, or The American Spirit
Speaks/' for the United States.
The elegy to "Lord
poems, "For All

Roberts," less militant


tion

Some

and measure.

poetry

in tone, is true

in

emo-

stanzas are touched by irony,

and have the sermonic quality which

is

characteristic

"The Sons of Martha," "En-Dor" and "Russia to the


Pacifists."
The juvenile of 1923, Land and Sea Tales
for Boys and Girls (or for Scouts and Scoutmasters)
is

uneven

but

in quality

has two dramatic sketches.

it

Eyes of Asia, portraits of Europeans as seen by Oriental

eyes,

is

more comparable

Actions and Reactions than


stories in Plain Tales

of the Heart"

is

Mr. Kipling
civic life.

coldness, keeps

He

it

to the

is

more

in

vital

"Fumes

and The Day's Work.

the best of these later tales.

is

His

to mediocre pages

reaping honors

reserve, which

him

far

is

in

educational and

sometimes rated as

from the limelight of

publicity.

cannot be persuaded to "come to America" as

lecturer or reader, in the train of

patriots of far less

many

worth or fame.

home, with family and

In his Sussex

few friends about him, he

a delightful raconteur or conversationalist

of world-wide politics.

angered

at

He

some of the petty

ing, like the recent attack

anachronisms

in

of his com-

is

upon

is

topics

more amused than

criticisms

upon

his writ-

upon "Mandalay" for

its

geography, not unlike the charges

WRITINGS OF RUDYARD KIPLING

101

The Tempest and The WinArnold Bennett, in Books and Persons, 9

against Shakespeare in
Tale.

ter's

has some comments upon Kipling's flaws

and Reactions and

his "prejudices

but he ends with

tribute

artist,

devoted to

and clayey ideals,"

him

to

Actions

in

as

painstaking

his craft.

Philip Guedalla, brilliant journalist and ironist,


his essays,

says

"much

Gallery, under caption of

in little"

him so "antiquated"

the "Dinosaurus" might give

Despite

such

"Mandalay,"

about the "remoteness and an-

tiquity" of Kipling; he finds

ity."

in

witty

him "points

in

that

modernhowever,

extravagances,

the critic admits that Kipling "has sharpened the English

language to a knife-edge and with

brilliant patterns

ture."

10

In

it

has

on the surface of our prose

both

his

and

prose

poetry

cut

litera-

he

has

"sharpened the English language to a knife-edge."

His verses may seem "antiquated" to the reader whose


exclusive tastes
at

"lilting

welcome only "new poetry" and sneer

rhymes"

and conventional meters.

broader minds, however, there

is

To

appreciation of the

vibrant messages of spiritual courage, the bold and

graphic excerpts from real

life, in

both the verse and

the fiction of Kipling at his best.

George H. Doran, New York, 191 7.


A Gallery by Philip Guedalla, New York, 1924.
G. P. Putnam's Sons.

10

of

By

permission


THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

102

One
was an

of the honors that came to this writer recently


invitation to give the Rectorial

Andrews
lished in

University,

book form

as Independence, similar in

to that of Barrie's address,

damental
"After

duty

all,"

of

developing

he says, "yourself

maybe,

money

in

to

another.

do good

His idealism

is

It

action,

is

to him."

worth a

in

ings,

individuality:

this life,

little

manhood.

you
and

pains and

It

is

much

idealism of work, of
the idealism even in

the midst of misjudgments, of carrying

Man's Burden," of

fun-

the only person

is

It is the

of responsibility.

ductive

the

not that of mere sentiment,

of sentimentality.

less

one's

away from

can by no possibility get

format

on a kindred occasion, en-

Mr. Kipling urges here

Courage.

titled

at St.

This has been pub-

1923.

in

Address

"The White

training youth towards clean, pro-

One

grants that some of his writ-

both prose and verse, might be eliminated from

collections

He

rank.

and memory, with an increase


is

uneven and was prone,

in his literary

in his earlier days,

to mistake coarseness for vigor, yet he has been able


to

make

his readers

both

listen

and

see.

Perhaps he

has not maintained the almost unanimous favoritism

among
11

college youths that he

had two decades ago

Independence: Rectorial Address at St. Andrews by Rudyard


New York, 1924. By permission of Mr. Kipling snd Double-

Kipling,

day, Page

&

Co.

WRITINGS OF RUDYARD KIPLING

103

there have been competitors with "college stories" of

rank realism
of our day

but

it

may

be questioned

if

any author

more often quoted among both educated

is

and unlettered

adults.

tempted to lower

his

Mr. Kipling has never been


standards for commercial ends;

with fearless truth, he has spoken messages of upright-

and

ness

tional,

service.

"A Song

perhaps imperialistic, but

his other stanzas, a catholic

tions

Keep

it

is

ye the

Make

Law

be

swift in

evil,

has, like scores of

message to Christian na-

all

obedience

drive the road and bridge the ford.

ye sure to each his

That he

own

reap where he hath sown;

the peace

Lord

among our

peoples let

men know we

serve the

12
!

Rudyard Kipling's Verse: Inclusive Edition, Garden City, N.


By permission of Mr. Kipling and Doubleday, Page & Co.
1924.
12

na-

everywhere

Clear the land of

By

of the English"

Y.,

CHAPTER
SELMA

VII

LAGERLOF SWEDISH

AND

REALIST

IDEALIST
The

prize of 1909 has been awarded:

Lagerlof, Selma, born 1858: "because of the noble idealism,

the wealth of fancy and the spiritual quality that characterize

her works."

"I declare

it

to be

my

express desire that in the

awarding of the prizes no consideration whatever be


paid to the nationality of the candidates, that
say,

whether

of

Scandinavian

words from the


fully

awarded the

that the most deserving be

will of

obeyed during the

in literature.

origin

first

the

to

prize,

These

not."

Alfred Nobel had been

faith-

eight years of the awards

Only once had the prize been given

a Scandinavian, to Bjornson, the

When

or

is

Norwegian,

to

1903.

in

announcement came that the winner for

1909 was the Swedish writer, Selma Lagerlof, the

most severe

of the Nobel Foundation

critics

Com-

mittee in former years were either commendatory or


silently acquiescent.

deserved
1

the

prize,

Here was an author who richly


for she was already known

Inscription with the Nobel Prize

104

Award

in Literature, 1909.

By

courtesy of

The American-Scandinavian Foundation

SELMA LAGERLOF

SELMA LAGERLOF

105

throughout Europe and America for her unique


in

fiction,

which photographic realism was always blended

with a dominant note of idealism.

The

juvenile

book

which combined geography, fancy, humor, and fascina-

and young, The Wonderful Adventures

tion for old

of Nils, and other books had followed the strange tale

of folklore and character study,

The Story of Gosta

Berling; these writings were outstanding evidences of

her literary

It

gifts.

was an honor

womanhood

to

everywhere that the Nobel prize was given to Selma


Lagerlof,

first

of the countrymen of Nobel to be thus

immortalized

in literature.

and her

messages from the press, she had shown

later

In her years of teaching

her sincere purpose "to benefit mankind."


It is interesting to

woman means
In

note that the family

later

home and environment of this author's girlMrs. Velma Swanston Howard, who has been

so successful as translator of

knows perfectly
England; she

is

all

spirit,

and thus has sustained that


"atmosphere" which char-

of Miss Lagerlof s

Mdrbacka

is

Sweden and

a friend of the author, with kinship in

indefinable but pervading

acterizes

Miss Lagerlof's books,

the languages of both

her traditions and

of

books to be translated

the reader finds detached photographs

into English,

hood.

this

"laurel leaf," a symbol of her fame.

Mdrbacka, one of her

of the

name of

alive with

fiction.

The

setting

elements of Nature and

THE NOBEL

106

PRIZE WINNERS

humanity, with folklore and "wonderful tales of old

Varmland" which became


later books.

The

many

the basis for

spacious

manor

of her

house, where Selma

Lagerlof was born sixty-seven years ago, becomes

The

miliar to readers of this autobiography.


chairs, with individual

Anna, and

little

fa-

nursery

names and portraits of Johan,

Selma Ottiliana Louisa, were treasured

heirlooms; the beds that "parted company," perhaps,


in the night

the

and the old owl

bedroom,

in

contributed

the lumber-loft above

infantile

"thrills"

and

man was

her

memories.

gay-hearted, courageous, popular

father, Lieutenant Lagerlof,

retired

from the army

but entertaining former associates in his

home and

re-

counting, for his daughter's education, tales of earlier


history of

Sweden and

The germ-idea

his family.

Gosta Berling, hero of her

first

a reminiscence that her father

of

romance, came after

had

told her one

morn-

memory of "the most fascinating of men," one who could sing, write poetry,
dance so that all feet moved in unison, and could bend
everyone's will to his own mood
and yet one who
lacked certain qualities of manly strength.
The

ing after breakfast, his

mother of Selma Lagerlof came from two generations


of ministers; she was quiet, practical, intuitive, a fine

administrator of her large household and frequent


guests.

Aunt Lovisa gave

a touch of

romance

to the

SELMA LAGERLOF

107

family circle by a sad chapter in her past that

counted

in

The

re-

is

Bridal Crown," the tragic result (ac-

cording to legend) of the substitution of whortleberry

The

for myrtle in the wreath for the bride's hair.

and stern yet devoted to the

nurse, Back-Kaisa, large

family,

was another

interesting character at

Marbacka;

from the old housekeeper and the grandmother the


learned stories,

children

sagas,

and

bits

family

of

histories.

When

Selma Lagerlof was three and

old, after bathing in a fresh-water

ther,

developed

she

Months

form of

a half years

pond with her


infantile

fa-

paralysis.

of inactivity followed; some lasting results

of this disease have been handicaps of the author

throughout her

life.

With humor and

realistic por-

trayal of a child's point of view of this period, she


tells

how

in

Marbacka, the chapter "Grand Company,"

she increased in social importance in the family,

having exclusive attention of the grim nurse,


dainties to eat in place of the usual food,

much

jealous disgust of her brother and sister.

at

and

to the

sojourn

Stromstead by the sea brought new vigor and

covery of motion to the

little girl;

herself and her family she


brilliant,

stuffed

zest in living,
sonality,

is

re-

with amazement to

walked

"bird of paradise."

to investigate

The

sprightly

which characterizes the author's per-

reflected in all her books.

Animals

as pets,

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

108

poultry of the farmyard, and birds and flowers are


vital factors in

Among

her earlier and later

important influences of her childhood was

singing of Bellman

the

Ballads,

with

their

humor,

One day when Miss

and haunting music.

pathos,

tales.

Lagerlof had won a place among twenty-five chosen


candidates at Teachers' College

in

Stockholm, and had

been listening to a lecture about Bellman and Rune-

berg and their ballads, she had her "flash of inspiraShe determined to

tion."

tell

stories about her

own

Varmland; she would become narrator of her "Cavand would

aliers"

incorporate

into

her

legends, folklore and real characters of the

tales

the

home

dis-

She had cherished ambitions to write verse and

trict.

even plays, from the days when, as a young


visited her uncle in

with

the

peasant

old

plays

Stockholm and went

girl,

she

to the theatre

housekeeper,

becoming impressed by

and scenes

from Nosselt's History.

She had lain awake

at night,

composing rhymes and

neglecting the sleep which would have fitted her for


the tasks of the next

tic"

day

in

"composition and arithme-

After graduation she taught

at

Landskrona,

in the

S el ma Lagerlof; The Woman, Her Work, Her Message by Harry


Maule, Garden City, N. Y., 1917. By permission of Doubleday,
Page & Co.
2

E.

SELMA LAGERLOF

109

province of Skane, always hoping to find time to write,

always meeting disappointments because of the de-

mands of

the classroom, often telling orally

some of

her tales to her pupils after school hours, always


turning to her old home, Marbacka,

new impetus

gaining

Her

first

her

for

re-

vacations and

in

aspirations.

literary

chapter of The Story of Gosta Berling was

composed on

Christmas holiday evening when she,

with members of her family, was returning from a

party at a distant neighbor's house.


raging and she sat

blizzard was

the sleigh, covered with furs,

in

while the old horse, urged by the aged coachman, tried


to

plough through the

of the wild

In her mind was formulated that chapter of

winds.
the

drifts, in defiance

Christmas night

at

the smithy, which

is

an ar-

resting episode in the complete novel.

She made

a metrical version; then she tried

dramatic form

and,

finally,

wrote

sister,

ball.

in

it

as

that of the flood at

wrote other episodes


another of the

short

it

story.

first

Later she

Ekeby and

In 1890, at the urgence of her

she sent some of these episodic stories to a

prize competition, offered by the magazine, Idun, for


the

best

novelette

of one

hundred pages.

few

weeks later the journal announced that some of the


manuscripts were

"so confusedly written that they

could not be considered for the prize"; Miss Lager-

"

THE NOBEL

no
lof

PRIZE WINNERS

was sure that hers was among

Then came

this rejected class.

telegram, signed by three classmates,

with the words, "Hearty Congratulations.

The
form,
time.

editor offered to publish the novel, in expanded


if

Miss Lagerlof could have

Again,

she

was

despair

in

ready

in a

when

it

short

friend,

Baroness Aldersparre, arranged financial matters so


that the teacher could be given a year's leave of ab-

sence

and "the

completed

When

miracle happened."

this initial story,

she had

combining Swedish legend,

history of the days of the Cavaliers and the pensioners

and the old forges, with humor and


she was dissatisfied because
disjointed."

There

are

tences are detached, places

of plot are weak.


as

is

delicate idealism,

seemed

to her "wild

and

passages

where

sen-

where the

links in her chain

it

the

In structure she has gained

skill,

evident by a comparison of her earlier fiction

with such masterworks as the

first

part of Jerusalem

and The Emperor of Portugallia. With this improved technic, she has kept her spontaneity, her vital
realism and intuition, her spiritual insight.
publication of one of her novels, the
said,

London Times

with true emphasis upon her unusual combination

of qualities:
a

After the

"She

is

an idealist pure and simple

world given over to realism, yet such

tion of her style

is

in

the perfec-

and the witchery of her fancy that

a generation of realists worship her."

An

optimism

SELMA LAGERLOF
which
ing,

in

apparent failures, akin to that of Brown-

defies

brings about the redemption of her characters

from Gosta Berling, drunken poet-preacher and

Marianne

cinating vagabond, and flighty


Liliecrona,

the

restless

The Emperor of

Mrs. Velma Swanston Howard


interview with

said,

Portugallia.
in

recent

of this book, that Miss

writer

the

to

Sinclair

and Glory Golden

violinist,

Sunnycastle, heroine of

fas-

Lagerlof, like her translator, considers this story of


Jan,

who

and

his

calls

himself

"The Emperor

of Portugal^,"

daughter, Glory, as her best work

Thousands of readers

will

in

fiction.

To

echo the preference.

the incisive, ruthless realism in this tale she has

added

sympathy that grips the heart, poetic setting and sagas,


and

message that

is

more impressive because

dramatic rather than sermonic.

The

it

is

threads of this

story are seldom tangled; the pattern stands out with


distinctness

and

artistry.

Invisible Links,

published

in

and animals

a collection of short stories,

was

1894, with peasants, fisherfolk, children,


all

"linked"

interrelations of

in

Miss Lagerlof then received

spirit;

a yearly stipend for her

services to literature, through the friendly interest of

Academy and King Oscar and his son,


Eugen. With a friend she went to Italy and

the Swedish

Prince
Sicily,

gaining

impressions

Miracles of Antichrist, issued

that
in

bore

harvest

in

1897 and translated

THE NOBEL

ii2

two years

into English

who had done

the

PRIZE WINNERS
by Pauline Bancroft Flach,

later

same

service for

with reactions to modern socialism

poetry of old

Sicily

and

upon established

wrote

The

effects

deep

with

slight plot

is

fervor

religion,

Miss Lagerlof

and colorful imagination.

evolved about the ruse of the Eng-

lishwoman who coveted an image of Christ


in a

church

ingly the

Rome, and

in

few weeks

the

true

stands

are

to Father

the great popular

Gondo, the

movement

is

it

its

down and
doorway. The

where miracles of
followers.

words of

ideal of unity
:

"You

between

could

take

your arms, while

it

is

swaddling clothes, and

to Jesus' feet;

and Antichrist would

nothing but an imitation of Christ, and

would acknowledge him

From

in

a miracle,

cast

to preach, through the

lying like a child in

you could bear

By

agnostic

its

and antichristianity

Christianity

see that he

Sicily

recorded by

is

the

in

taken away to

Miss Lagerlof seeks

still

image

later, the false

is

helpfulness

Pope

substituted an image, seem-

only of this World."

is

Christchild

Antichrist

the

as a child,

same but with the legend upon the crown,

"My Kingdom
a

of Gosta

Mingling traditions and

Berling and Invisible Links.

its

The Story

his

Lord and Master."

a Swedish Homestead, which was published in

3 Miracles
of Antichrist by Selma Lagerlof, translated by Pauline
Bancroft Flach, Garden City, N. Y., 1899. By permission of Double-

day,

Page & Co.


SELMA LAGERLOF

113

1899, contains the strong, mystical novelette,

Story of a Country House."

"The

student at Upsala

University loses his reason as a result of seeing his


flock of sheep frozen to

in a

storm when, by

tragedy might have been averted.

his forethought, the

Known

death

"The Goat," he wanders about

as

side, selling toys

and

the country-

redemption and

trinkets, until his

sanity are achieved through his love for a girl of noble

Among

character.

volume

which

prize

and "The Emperor's

trip,

Money

allegorical yet photographic of

is

an industrial

Two

same

"Santa Catarina of Siena," a reflection of the

is

Italian

the other short tales in this

Chest,"

Belgium

in

crisis.

other books preceded the award of the Nobel

Jerusalem and The Wonderful Adventures of


In 1899, the Swedish govern-

Nils, with

its

ment gave

to

Palestine.

She was to report, on her return, upon con-

sequel.

Miss Lagerlof

ditions which she

commission to go to

might discover there

in the

Swedish

colony which had migrated from Nas, a parish of Dalecarlia, a

few years previously.

of missionary enterprise,

Gordon of Chicago,
holders

had sold

among them Mrs. Edward

scores of peasants

their

homesteads

families to join this colony in the

had come

to

Urged by promoters

Sweden of

and house-

and

Holy Land.

left

their

Rumors

direful conditions there

of

disease and hunger, of depleted morale and bicker-

THE NOBEL

among

ings

kills!"

colonists

became

PRIZE WINNERS

and missionaries.

common

"Jerusalem

Lagerlof undertook investigation and made


on existent

evils

plished a far

and exaggerated rumors.

more important work

She accom-

for literature than

most emotional, graphic books, Jerusalem.


the

a report

She gathered material for one of her

report.

this

Miss

phrase of the day.

background of

wove

facts,

both

in

Against

Dalecarlia and Palesfeeling, with

tine,

she

lore,

psychological insight, and characterization of a

fine

a story of intense

The

type.

folk-

portrayals of the Ingmarsson family

and the women, Brita, Karin, and Gertrude, whose

were interlinked with those of the

fates

later genera-

tion of the ancestral family of Dalecarlia, are vivid,

Humor

relieves the tragic intensity of this book, so

Howard who

well rendered into English by Mrs.


says

Mr. Henry Goddard Leach

in

been able "to reproduce the original


as verisimilitude."

An

found

in

life

essence as well

the opening sentences of the chapter,

in July, a

Jerusalem

by

Howard, Garden
Page & Co.

Selma
City,

style

I.

"One

is

"The Debeautiful

long train of cars and wagons

out from the Ingmar Farm.

in

under religious tension

parture of the Pilgrims" of Part

morning

the Introduction,

example of the descriptive

of this story of Swedish

has,

set

The Hellgumists had

Lagerlof, translated by Velma Swanston


N. Y., 1916. By permission of Doubleday,

SELMA LAGERLOF

115

completed their arrangements, and were now

at last

leaving for Jerusalem

the

first

stage of the journey

being the long drive to the railway station.

"The
had

procession,

pass

to

The

disreputable lot

moving towards

wretched

Mucklemire.

in

people

which

hovel

who

lived

the

village,

was

called

were

there

the kind of scum of the earth which

must have sprung into being when our Lord's eyes

were turned, or when he had been too busy elsewhere.

"There was

whole horde of

on the place,

sters

loose

day,

all

who were

ragged young-

the habit of running

shrieking after passing vehicles,

calling the occupants

who

in

dirty,

and

bad names; there was an old crone

usually sat by the roadside, tipsy; and there were

husband and wife who were always quarrelling and

fighting,

and who had never been known to do any

No

honest work.

more than they

"When

one could say whether they begged

stole,

or stole more than they begged.

the Jerusalem-farers

came alongside

this

wretched hovel, which was about as tumbledown as a

when wind and storm have, for


been allowed to work havoc, they saw

place

can become

many

years,

the old crone standing erect and sober at the roadside,

on the same spot where she usually


stupor

and with her were four of the children.

All five were

now washed and combed, and

dressed as

was

it

drunken

sat in a

possible for

them

to be.

as decently
.

THE NOBEL

n6

PRIZE WINNERS

"All the Jerusalem-farers suddenly burst into tears,


the grown-ups crying softly, while the children broke

loud sobs and wails.

into

When

they had

all

passed by, Beggar Lina also began to weep.


11

'Those people are going to Heaven to meet Jesus/

she told the children.

Heaven, but we are

Another

'All those

left

standing by the wayside.'

outcome

literary

people are going to

Lagerlof to Palestine was

of

the

renewed

visit

of

'

Miss

interest in legends

about Jesus and the Virgin Mary.

Always deeply

religious,

with an unusual ability to blend worship with

tradition

and never

element,

she wrote the tales that were collected as

lose the distinctive flavor of each

Christ Legends, translated by Mrs.

Here
as

Howard

in

1908.

are new, impressive versions of such old myths

"The Wise Men's Well," "Saint Veronica's Kerand "Robin Redbreast."

chief,"

The Swedish

school authorities wished for a good

geography which should be popular with the children


and satisfy the

teachers.'

The National Teachers'

Association appealed to Miss Lagerlof for such a book

and the

results

were The Wonderful Adventures of

Nils and Further Adventures of Nils, appearing in

1906

and

schools and

1907.

homes

These books, so widely read


in

are worthy a place

Wonderland of

in

every civilized country to-day,

on the shelves beside Alice

the past

in

and Doctor Doolittle of the

SELMA LAGERLOF
The

present type of juveniles.

and

his

and

in

117

boy, Nils Holgersson,

"goosey-gander," with companions on the earth


the air, appeal to the imagination of

is

ages,

about Sweden's outlines and

while the information

landmarks

all

both accurate and entertaining.

Such had been the literary output of Miss Lagerlof


before she was chosen for the Nobel winner of 1909.

Already she had been given

gold medal for her work

by the Swedish Academy and the degree of LL.D. by


Five years after the award

the University of Upsala.

she was elected to membership in the Swedish Acad-

emy,

the eighteen immortals''

When

thus honored.
a

grand

at

fete at

the prize

the

first

was given

Her

in

had been her

work

and her

crises.

in literature

Wistful

summons

to

saying the right words, this

father who, long dead,

many

King

acceptance was in the form of a

her father to aid her

first

to her, with

given by

unique speech, a story, briefly told, of her

her

to be

Stockholm, she was the guest of honor

banquet at the Grand Hotel,

Gustav V.

woman

beauty

spiritual guide in

and
5

inspiration for

delicate
u

humor
sits

and

ponders a while; then he wipes away the tears of

joy,

were blended

in the closing

words:

shakes himself, and strikes his


chair.

'I

don't care to

sit

fist

Father

on the arm of the

here any longer and muse

Selma Lagerlof: The Woman, Her Work, Her Message by Harry


Garden City, N. Y., 1917. By permission of Doubleday,
Page & Co.
5

E. Maule,


THE NOBEL

n8

PRIZE WINNERS

on things which no one, either


can answer
Prize,

!'

he says.

in

heaven or on earth,

you have received the Nobel

'If

shan't trouble myself about anything but to

be happy.'

"Your Royal Highness


since

Ladies

got no better answer to

remains for

me

all

and Gentlemen

my

queries,

you to join me

to ask

gratitude, which I have the

honour

it

only

in a toast

of

to propose to the

Swedish Academy."

Miss Lagerlof was


honor came to her;

fifty-one years

when

old

this

the years since then she has

in

and written words, "the noble

exemplified, in spoken

idealism, the wealth of imagination, the soulful quality

ternational

was

holm,
as

Her

of her style."

in

idea

Suffrage

widely

speech, in 191

was held

Congress

and

read

when

1,

in

translated.

this,

many of her stories, she stressed the


of home and its influence throughout every
This

of

marked,

also, the publication of Lilliecrona' s

betterment

in

the

world.

translated in English three years later

The

setting

Marbacka.
of

all

This

year

Home,
by Anna Bar-

was Varmland and the hero's home,

Lovdalla, closely resembles the

tical

In

Stock-

so

avenue

well.

the In-

is,

home

of the author,

perhaps, the most poetic and mys-

her stories.

"music and music alone

The
his

violinist

home,

a haunting character, sharing

who found

his place of rest,"

many

traits

in
is

with Gdsta

SELMA LAGERLOF
Berling.

His life-passage

is

turbulent, often dramatic,

sometimes melancholy, ending


for him and

Maia

are

of

scenes

Lisa, the pastor's daughter.

There

"The

Bride's

emotional vigor,

more

Gosta Berling,
of

Ekeby

happy romance

in

like

Dance" and "The Accusation."


rable to the

119

These are compa-

familiar chapters in

like that

The Story of

where the autocratic Mistress

driven forth by her pensioners because they

is

discover that she has

vowed

a soul each year to the

devil (in expiation for her secret sin) or the

redemp-

power of Countess Elizabeth in reclaiming Gosta's


manhood. Beautiful descriptions of apple orchards in
tive

bloom are found


romantic legends

the later book, interwoven with

in

like the

excitement for the pastor's

daughter when young Lilliecrona comes forward

dream and

offers her

in

her

water "after the magic pancake,"

a sure prophecy that he will be her husband.

Against the same background of her girlhood home


is

placed the later, strong story of

Portugallia.

This

is

than some of her other

man
little

with no zest
daughter,

less

episodic

whom

Jan, the dull, plodding

fiction.

in life until

he

castle, is a vital character;

The Emperor of
and more unified

he holds

calls

we

in his

arms

his

Glory Goldie Sunnyshare his pride in the

beauty and charm of Glory, his faith

in

her even

when

rumors would smirch her moral character, not without basis, as she goes out into the world to save the

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

120

home

for Jan and his wife, Katrina, his final act of

when, with clouded mind but

self-sacrifice

vision, he

would save her from

the

and Hardness, Lust and Vice."


well called in France

demons of "Pride

This story has been

an epic of fatherhood

1922 appeared

In

cast, the

Swedish when

story,

Swed-

United States The Out-

it

was published

entered as a motif

sometimes with strained

artistic fiction

Berling
virility

it

in the latter

As

effects.

The

part of the
a

work of

The Emperor of Portugallia. It has


however, and much intensity of feeling. Alor

was deeply
of

19 18.

in

was

title

its

seems inferior to The Story of Gosta

though she lived

fices

in the

English version of Bannlyst, as

World War

in a

stirred

neutral country Miss Lagerlof

by the war and the

She resented

life.

humanity.

The

keynote

The Outcast.

in

all

human

sacredness of

terrible sacri-

evidences
life

of brutal

forms her

Sven Elversson, who had

lived through a fearful experience

upon an Arctic

pedition and had been accused of eating


in

Pere Goriot."

ish

in

spiritual

human

ex-

flesh

an hour of imminent famine, returns to his mother

and

his

home

to

find himself

denounced by the

lagers and even by the minister.

from further torture of

spirit,

To

vil-

save his mother

after he has tried in

vain to overcome the prejudice of the people by his


charity and

Christlike

deeds,

he goes away to the

SELMA LAGERLOF
woods of the Far North.

"The Outcast,"

called

until

of the bigoted minister

121

Here he wanders, and

is

he meets the beautiful wife

who had preached

against Sven,

man who, in unfounded jealousy, had cast off his


wife.
The love scenes in this book are elemental in
their simplicity, yet have poetic touches.
Then comes
the

the Battle of Jutland and the frightful scenes


the bodies of the dead are

washed upon

when

the shores

home town. Sven returns and organizes a


group of men to bury the dead; in the pocket of one
of his

of the victims

from

is

found

a letter

which exonerates Sven

the false charge of cannibalism.

grotesque tale
stition

in

parts,

with local color and super-

interwoven with good character-drawing and a

dominant message of

An

faith.

early folk story which has been recently transentitled

The Treasure.

literary value

compared with

lated by Arthur G. Chater,


It is slight in

volume and

is

such major books as Jerusalem and


Portugallia.

It

It lends itself to scenario

because of the pictorial background and the

brilliant

contrasts in characters and sentiments.

Sweden of the sixteenth century,


erick

II

of

Denmark and

curred this legendary


its

The Emperor of

has features of the spectacular with

restrained dramatic power.


effects

It is a daring,

galleys

and

its

tale.

in the

In

days of Fred-

its

romantic history, oc-

It

mingles the sea, with

wild storms, with the parsonage and

THE NOBEL

122

PRIZE WINNERS

the hidden treasure chest which

was

All the

looted.

family had been murdered by these mysterious robbers

The

except a foster child, Elsalill.

ment

is

used with

the ghost

was

supernatural

fine effects; this girl

is

and messages from her foster


Elsalill

killed.

in

is

anguish of

spirit

ele-

haunted by
sister

who

because she

loves the bold, persuasive, and richly apparelled Sir

Archer, although she finds that he

How

murderers.

one of the robber-

is

her body becomes his shield from

the sheriff, even to her death and his escape, forms the

romantic climax of

this tale.

Miss Lagerlof's early ambition


tist

to

become

drama-

has never wholly died; she has written a few plays

that have been staged with success in Sweden,

Among

mark, and Norway.


tization of

The

Girl

from

has been shown as a film


as well as abroad.
ness,

The

Den-

these has been a drama-

the Marshcroft; this story


in

many

places in

America

setting in rural picturesque-

with tragic and romantic notes mingled, affords

dramatic opportunities.

Mrs. Howard says that The

Story of Gosta Berling has been shown at the cinema


in

Sweden and elsewhere

in

"Will Miss

Europe.

Lagerlof ever come to the United States?" we ask her


friend and translator.
tive.

She

is

reply

deeply interested

many books by our


cal or

The

in

is

probable nega-

America and reads

authors, especially those of mysti-

informing trend.

She had an uncle

who

lived in

SELMA LAGERLOF

123

Seattle and, on the walls of her dining-room, are found

landscapes of Western America.


vivacity of

many
the

American women impress her

first

in

as she receives

summer home

either at her

visitors,

backa or

The freedom and


at

Mar-

the winter at Falun, close to the scenes of

She reads

part of Jerusalem.

with ease and

six

languages

conversant with the major interests

is

of every country.

Miss Lagerlof

intensely

is

her literary reflections; she

is

racial

is

Love of

She has applied her creed of "keeping

the imagination

young" by never losing her own deand "belief

in fairies" that

enhearten and redeem humanity.

Edwin Bjork-

light in sagas,

man,

life.

one of the primal qualities of her personality

and writing.

will

in

international in her sym-

pathies and insight into problems of

home

and national

in

hero

tales,

Voices of Tomorrow, has stressed her ability

and courage

to

dream and

feel

and aspire."

In the collection of her earlier and later tales about


Charlotte, Karl Arthur and

Anna

Svard, entitled

The

Ring of the Lowenskolds, 6 she has mingled folklore,


customs,

humor and

vivid character-drawing.

local in its Dalecarlian setting.

It

is

The motives which

impel the characters and the situations that test them,

show the broad humanity and


form
6

this author's insignia.

Doubleday, Doran, 193 1.

the romantic creed which

CHAPTER
PAUL HEYSE

VIII

HAUPTMANN

(1910)GERHART
(1912)

The

prize of 19 10 has been

awarded:

Heyse, Paul, born 1830, died April

2,

1914: "as a mark of

esteem of an artistry, finished and marked by an ideal conception,

which he has shown during a long and

as lyric dramatist,

short stories."

Mommsen

as

an author of romances and famous

Two German
Nobel prize

and

significant activity

had been winners of the

scholars

in literature in

1904 and 1908

and Rudolf Eucken.

Theodor

Two more

distin-

guished authors with international reputations were

added

man

in

19 10 and 19 12,

making four awards

to Ger-

Paul Heyse, the

literature within eight years.

versatile author of the year 19 10 has been difficult to


classify,

because he

is

dramatist, poet, novelist, and

writer of a form of short story

More

than one hundred and

known

fifty

as the Novelle.

of these tales are

accredited to him, in addition to prodigious industry in

other literary forms.

The Novelle

bears some re-

semblance to the short stories of Hoffmann, Tieck, Al1

Inscription with the Nobel Prize

124

Award

in Literature,

1910.

PAUL HEYSE

125

fred de Musset, and the American masters of this type,


Poe, Hawthorne, and O. Henry.

In more definite

method than some of

Heyse developed

these conteurs,

which he applied and explained,

a principle

in part,

Introduction to his Deutscher Novellenschatz;

in his

he stresses the fact that the essential foundation of

"what children

this

form

"A

strong silhouette should not be lacking."

is

"silhouette will be a brief

call the

story" but he adds,

summary of

The

conditions which

underlie the focal scene or incident."

Thus Heyse

came

form of

creator, or developer, of this

be-

fiction,

with a wide range of incidents and characters, in which

keen observation of

and faithful

life

recital

blended with idealism of a distinctive motive


of "glorifying nature,"

human and

that

in

Berlin,

1830; he was eighty years old when the

15,

Nobel honor was


Heyse, with a
philologist

inanimate.

Johann Ludwig Paul Heyse was born

March

were

firm,

father, Karl

Ludwig

Teutonic nature, was a famous

and professor

His mother came from


social rank.

His

received.

at the University of Berlin.

a Jewish family of wealth

and

In his Memoirs, her son recalls her as

"passionate and imaginative"; from her he inherited


his bent

toward

story-telling

and delight

in the sensu-

ous which mingled with the rationalistic trend of mind,

bequeathed by

his father.

home

of the Heyses

artists.

The atmos-

In the

gathered scholars, authors, and

THE NOBEL

126

PRIZE WINNERS

phere fostered the natural precocity of the boy, Paul.

One of his older friends was Kugler, the historian of


art, who had an inspirational influence upon the youth
manhood, Heyse married the gifted daughter of

in

this friend.

At

Berlin, he

He

where Heyse went from

the University of Bonn,

showed much

interest in

was fascinated with Spanish,

Romance

languages.

especially the writings

In 1849, and again in

of Cervantes and Calderon.

1852, he traveled in Italy, adding Dante, Boccaccio,

and Leopardi to

The homes

his list of literary heroes.

of artists were open to him and he found Italy an ideal

land of "colour and grace. "

Shakespeare received his

tribute throughout his literary life.

dramas and

lyric

poems, tales

in

He

began to write

verse and prose with

youthful zest and marks of great promise.

King

Max

of Bavaria offered to him a position at the

Court of Munich,

at a salary of

1500

to

satisfy his love of beauty.

Under Louis

favored with
culture

some

fine

awaken

buildings;

was pervasive.

Among

scholars, with

whom Heyse became

were

Bodenstedt,

Geibel,

Schack, the historian.


cessor to King

Max,

his

and

talent

I it

had been

atmosphere

an
the

and

poets

associated here,

Wilbrandt,

In 1868,

Munich

florins.

was an environment sure

of

In 1854,

Luogg,

when Louis

and

II,

suc-

insulted Geibel, the poet,

and

caused him to leave the

city,

Heyse was depressed

al-


PAUL HEYSE
though he stayed

127

Munich, living

in

in a

charming

villa

there until his death in 19 14.

From

the

showed an

early years

aristocratic culture which did not

interest in fisherfolk, peasants,

Heyse

authorship,

of his

dim

his

and rural characters.

Although family sorrows came upon him, and he


fered,

from 1880

to 1900,

suf*

from attacks by the ardent

followers of Zola and Ibsen, yet he never lost his


serenity of character

and

expression.

"Instinct"

emplified

scores

in

was

his guide,

as he has ex-

of his tales and dramas.

"child of nature," or the


nobility,

his belief in individualistic

man

woman

or

of inherent

was incapable of any low or mean action

cording to his belief.

Georg Brandes regards

In

Salamander, which

allegiance to nature, in spite of failings

of

and adverse
:

never yet of virtue or of failing

Have been ashamed, nor proudly


Myself of one, nor thought

Beyond

And
The
2

Mr.

life,

judgments against him by the "naturalistic school"

all else,

my

did adorn

sins of veiling.

betwixt the nobly born

vulgar herd, this marks the separation,

cowards whose hypocrisy we scorn.

Creative Spirits
York, 1924.

New

ac-

as his best Novelle in versified

form, 2 he expresses his creed of the vigorous

The

of

the Nineteenth

Century by Georg Brandes,

THE NOBEL

128

Him

I call

Carves

his

who, with moderation,

noble,

own

PRIZE WINNERS

honor, and but

His neighbors' slander or

Another character,

little

heeds

8
their approbation.

familiar

of Heyse,

readers

to

Toinette of Kinder der Welt {Children of the World)


speaks words of similar trend often quoted; "There
but one genuine nobility; to remain true to one's
.

He who

is

self.

bears within himself the true rank, lives

and dies through

his

own

and

grace,

therefore,

is,

sovereign."

To

Italy,

of his

tales.

any of

and

his

Heyse turns for sensuous

UArrabiata, probably the best

Novellen by students of German

classes, written

interesting history. 4

when he was
Paul Heyse

his friend,

Joseph Victor

Sorrento.

They had been

many
known of

delights in

in colleges

twenty-three, has an
as a

young man, and

were

Scheffel,

at an inn at

together at Capri and had

planned to hold a "literary joust," to read to each


other, at ^Sorrento,

some new

contributed the poem,

Der Trumpeter von

Heyse read UArrabiata.


maiden's love

Piquant

for Antonio,

the

maidenly pride and resistance to


3

Gesammelte

Werke:

or poem.

tale

Vol.

Ill,

p.

is

Scheffel

Gdttingen

this tale of the

boatman, and her

his love until the injury


300,

translated

in

Creative

Century (by Georg Brandes) by Rasmus B.


York, 1924. By permission of Thomas Y. Crowell

Spirits of the Nineteenth

Anderson,

New

Co.
* Introduction by

by Henry Holt

&

Mary

Co.,

A. Frost to edition of UArrabiata, published


York, 1896.

New

PAUL HEYSE
to his

arm and

mother, brings
years later

five

129

memory

his plea

to her, in

about

romantic sequel.

Heyse was again

at

of her

Twenty-

Sorrento; he

sent a greeting, in rhyme, to this friend of earlier

days and later

He

life.

told

him that he had seen

again his model, "Laurella," on the street but she did

not recognize him; she was far removed from the

"madcap" of
ful

fifteen, the "cross-patch,"

charm and

tale,

with her youth-

The background

wistful appeal.

against Naples and Vesuvius,

is

of this

painted with that

vivid photography which characterizes Heyse's scenes

drama and

in

fiction.

Unlike Balzac or Turgenieff,

he wrote few words of description but "created

mosphere" that was

alive.

at-

Striking examples are the

"At the Ghost Hour"

familiar tales, "Barbarossa,"

and "The Dead Lake."


In the later Novellen, as well as the novels and plays
of other years, Heyse showed tendencies towards real-

ism and

less

romanticism.

On

the other hand,

he

never lost his urge for sensuous beauty, his determination "to follow one's bent"

He

("sich gehen zu lassen").

would not compel himself

would

yield to impulse

against nature"

was

to irksome writing; he

and mood.

"The

his keynote, reiterated

dem Gluck"

real sin

is

from the

J ourne Y After
Happiness") to the longer novels, Kinder der Welt

short tale of "Reise nach

(Children of the World) and

Im

Paradiese (In Para-

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

3o

dise)

In philosophy he has been called both fatalistic

The

and epicurean.

self-surrender, especially in

such

diverse

Women

between restraint and

conflicts

writings

women,

are germ-ideas in

The Sabine

L' Arrabiata,

as

(with the heroine, Tullia) and In Paradise,

with the forceful character of Irene.

In the dialogue,

Children of the World, between Balder, the invalid-

in

and Franzel, the

idealist

socialist-printer, the author's

Balder declares that

convictions are unfolded.

of enjoyment to him,

full

in spite

life is

of outward sufferings,

because "he can experience past and future," because he

can "conjure up"

all

the periods of his life and find a

totality, a

completeness of enjoyment.

baron

the

in

In

novel,

Paradise,

So the young

which has been

vehemently discussed for two generations,

own

his

"inner

nature and his friend and, for a time, his

harmony"

destroyed but after sufferings,

is

portrayed with analytical

The

sins against

city of

to society

Munich,

and the

in

arts,

skill,

its

harmony

is

restored.

varied aspects as related

forms the "chorus" and subtle

influence in this dramatic story. 5

Heyse has written more than

sixty

dramas yet too

few of them are translated adequately into English;


too

often

Many
5

An

man

they

have

are historical;

excellent study of

Classics edited by

failed

in

The Sabine
Heyse

Kuno

is

stage

Women

presentation.
is

erotic

by Professor von Klenze

Francke,

German

in

and
Ger-

Publication Society.

PAUL HEYSE
consistent

less

in

development

131

Hans Lange,

than

Hadrian Colberg, and Mary of Magdala; the last play


has been translated by William Winter and by Lionel

The

Vale.

may

old philologist, Zipfel, in Colberg,

have been modeled,

from Heyse's

part,

in

father.

His speech, relating the story of Leonidas and the Persian

War, reaches

a climax of courage

and

self-sacrifice,

with an application to later days of struggle between

and Germans.

the French

In Henning, the old serv-

ant in

Hans Lange,

in the

redemptive power of nobler nature,

the author emphasizes his belief

young

incentives to revenge against the

There

is

in spite

of

squire.

unevenness of workmanship

among

the

many Novellen. Felice, the tale of the peasant girl


who "listened to reason rather than the call of passion,"
is

a vital expression of the author's creed of obedience

The

to "impulse of the heart."

keen and

realistic

later tales are

more

than the photographic, romantic

scenes laid in Italy and Southern

came more of an analyst of

all

Germany.

Heyse

be-

kinds of humanity, with

their conflicting "impulses," but he never acquiesced in

the scenes of squalor

some of

By

his

contemporaries of the "naturalistic school."

contrast, he

poetry.

and moral slime that delighted

One

was an

idealist

with a strong vein of

of his best stories of later period,

The

Last Centaur, expresses his revolt against the materialistic spirit

of his age.

The

creature

who

represents

THE NOBEL

32

the age of

the

myths and imagination

wood by

modern

PRIZE WINNERS

the evil

ways and heartless gibes of the

villages; in turn, he scorns their opposition with

"an exhalted humor."

It

seems almost a modern ver-

sion of the old tale of Baucis

other
ideal,

driven back into

is

tale,

in

The

spite

children,

In an-

Incurable, the hero keeps faith in the

of the "rabble in kid gloves."

Blinden {The Blind)


ful pictures of

and Philemon.

is

Die

an appealing story, with color-

garden and ravens and

flocks,

and two

Clement and Marlene, waiting with tense

emotion for the doctors to restore their

The

sight.

stern father, obsessed with his idea of "duty,"

is

Hand"

is

strong character.

"Nils mit der offenen

fairy tale that defies adequate translation into English

but has situations of dramatic

notably that of

skill,

the gulls biting the rope at the execution of Nils, and

the brave deed of Stina, the princess

Heyse was more


than

men.

maidens."

successful

in

who

loves Nils.

portraying

women

He was long called "the favorite of


He had insight to see fairly and to balance

well the traits of normal

maidenhood

beauty, coyness,

love of prowess and adventure, ardent but concealed

whom

love until the lover

came

"maidenly pride"

("Madschenstoltz").

traces of the influence of

to

Goethe

she would yield her

in certain

Kinder der Welt, and such Novellen


of Treviso,

as

The Prodigal Son, and The

There are
passages

in

The Broiderer
Spell of Roth-

GERHART HAUPTMANN

In the last story, there are comments upon

enburg.
art,

interwoven with humor and irony as the characters

from Ausbach

journey

Wiirzburg.

to

however, marks his drama and


conception and

fine literary

him the Nobel

for

133

Originality,

his fiction

that "ideal

craftsmanship" which

won

inscription.

Mr. Georg Brandes

believes that

Heyse was,

pri-

marily, a pupil of Eichendorf, as his poetry indicates. 6

The poems by Heyse


although

he

are less familiar than his prose,

wrote

both

mander" ranks among

and

epics

his best long

poems; "The Fury"

and "The Fairy Child" are examples of

He

delighted to translate

lays,

folk songs

-or

"Sala-

lyrics.

transpose

his

troubadour

from the Spanish and the

whom

Like Mendelssohn, to

lyrics.

Italian.

he has been compared

in

temperament, he lacked dynamic force but he was


sensitive, artistic,

and

idealistic in his basic character.

Gerhart Hauptmann
The

prize of 19 12 has been awarded:

Hauptmann, Gerhart, born 1862:


versatile,

and prominent

it

since

the

drama."

first

Nobel

has happened, at intervals, that

Creative Spirits of the Nineteenth Century by Georg Brandes,


York, 1924, Thomas Y. Crowell Co.
Inscription with the Nobel Prize Award in Literature, 1912.

New
7

was awarded,

''principally for his rich,

activity in the realm of the

During the quarter century


prize

(1912)

THE NOBEL

34

PRIZE WINNERS

two representatives of the same nation but


generations, are found on the

different

Thus

lists in literature.

Bjornson and Hamsun, among Norwegian novelists,

Echegaray and Benavente

Heyse and Hauptmann

Spanish

in

German

in

Drama, and

literature of the

imagination, are exponents of succeeding generations

Heyse stood

of thought and expression.

more

for the older,

and romantic forms; he decreed

poetic

a phi-

man and contentment in life.


Gerhart Hauptmann, who received the prize only two
losophy of nobleness

in

years later than Heyse, in 19 12, was ranked by some

with the realists of the modern, restless type,

critics

whose

among

His award,
writings,
articles

society

in

general

was world-

After 1900 the fame of Heyse had de-

disturbing.
clined

of

criticism

the younger,

at

more progressive

eighty years,

especially

the

writers.

revived interest in his

Novellen; translations

and

about his personality were widely printed

in

current journals.

One of

the authors

his naturalism

Hauptmann.

whom Heyse had

and depressing dramas had been Gerhart

When

was again given

and playwright,

racial pride

other countries asked,


in

"How

meaning so that

of Before

made that
German novelist

the announcement was

the prize of 19 12

verted

censured for

it

Dawn, Lonely

to a

ran high but

critics

of

could idealism be per-

would apply
Lives,

to the author

The Weavers and

From an

original etching by Hermann Struck.


the artist and courtesy of the New

Reproduced by permission of
York Public Library

GERHART HAUPTMANN


GERHART HAUPTMANN
Michael Kramer?"

mann was
the

most

name of Haupt-

Unfairly, the

linked constantly with that of

bitter malcontents with this

was biassed and

attitude

135

Sudermann by

award.

Such an

That Hauptmann

unjust.

has written some of the most photographic, haunting

dramas of
but

and

as true that he has

is

it

industrial strife

social vices

Sunken

and ParsivaL

There are two

distinctive, but

not wholly contradic-

Hauptmann

as he reveals himself

tory, personalities in

to his readers.

It

especially, that he

was

The Sunken Bell,


the Nobel prize; it

as author of

was chosen for

had certain autobiographical suggestions of


flict

of

between the material and the spiritual

its

modern

The Assumption of Hannele, The

literature
Bell,

true;

produced two, possibly

three, of the really poetic, symbolic plays in

German

is

Recognizing that he

author.

this con-

in the

nature

often associated

is

with Sudermann, the brilliant, relentless novelist and


dramatist,

it

is

interesting to find these

two writers

well differentiated by Otto Heller in Studies in

German

(Boston,

Literature

the nervous, sensitive

1905).

the masculine personality of


virile

in contrast

Sudermann,

with

less subtle,

and coarse, with broader knowledge of

but lacking the intuitive perceptions of

One may

compares

mind of Hauptmann, "possessed

of a reproductive, feminine talent, "

more

He

Modern

question

some of these

life

Hauptmann.

adjectives used by

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

136

Mr.

Heller, but the general contrast

especially as applied to the poetic

mann,

The Sunken

like

well phrased,

is

dramas by Haupt-

And Pippa

Bell,

Dances, and

Parsival.

Before Hauptmann conceived any of

him

entitles

rank among the

to

this

work

idealists,

that

had

he

written grim tragedies, similar in trend to those by


Ibsen, Zola, Tolstoy,

As

in his social tenets:

and

in plots

there are such

The Beaver Coat, Rose Bernd, and The

defects in

Conflagration.
lyric quality,

That he had

a poetic instinct, a true

was acknowledged from occasional

gloomy plays

such

Nordau, and Arno Holz.

he has been censured as weak

realist

sometimes strained

in

Max

Lonely Lives,

as

Among

Crampton, and The Weavers.


industrial upheaval

and

suffering,

lines

Colleague

the plays of

The Weavers has

tense feeling, with lines of irony and suppressed aspirations.

was

It

dedicated

Robert

to

Hauptmann,

father of the author, in affectionate words that express


the

source

of

its

inspiration

Gerhart Hauptmann to
father,

know what

work

to you,

here.

Your

young days
here

and

it

his forefathers:

feelings lead

am

me

"You, dear

to dedicate this

not called upon to analyze them

stories of

my

grandfather,

sat at the loom, a

depicted,

Whether

and the allegiance of

contained

the

who

poor weaver

in

his

like those

germ of my drama.

possesses the vigor of

life

or

is

rotten

GERHART HAUPTMANN
at the core,

it is

the best 'so poor a

man

137

Hamlet

as

is,'

can offer."

While

grandfather had been a poor weaver, he

this

met with better fortunes

in later life,

Hauptmann was owner

of Gerhart

The boy was born

at Salzbrunn,

and the father

of three hotels.

a seaside

town

in

1862; thus he was thirty-two years younger

Silesia, in

than Heyse

a full generation in time

and standards

His mother was "one of the people."

of literature.

The boy was

inclined to study sculpture

and he was

He

sent to art schools in Breslau, Jena,

and

was

seemed almost the

a slow pupil; his brother, Carl,

in Italy.

who expressed faith in his gifts or future


With his art studies he combined agriculture

only person
success.

and

After a brief apprenticeship as modeler,

history.

he decided that he would be an actor; he had

a lisp that

interfered with the continuance of this histrionic hope.

He

woman

moved to Berlin,
in 1885, where he became identified with "The Free
Stage" movement and began to write plays.
Byron
had been one of his earlier literary heroes; in The Fate
married a

of wealth and

of the Children of Prometheus, he recorded some


impressions of travel along the same route as Childe

Harold's Pilgrimage,
In 1889
Berlin;

it

"The Free Stage

Society" was

formed

in

was, in a way, "an imitation of Antoine's

Free Theatre,

organized

two years before,"

says

138

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

Barrett

H. Clark

Among

the founders

in

Study of the

Modern Drama.

were Otto Brahm, Maximilian

Harden, Theodor Wolff and others who wished


duce plays of varied types, especially the
uralistic

fluences

to pro-

work of

nat-

Hauptmann came under the inof Bruno Wille, the socialist, and Arno Holz,
writers.

from

the dramatist; certain reactions


ship of

9,

minds may be traced

in his

this

companion-

Dawn,
Brahm was

plays Before

Colleague Crampton, and Florian Geyer.

the director of this Free Stage Society which, in 1894,


after fulfilling
into

the

mission for Germany, was merged

its

Deutsches Theatre.

Hauptmann

Among

the

plays by

written under this stimulus, in addition to

the three mentioned above, were

The

Festival of Peace

Lonely Lives, The Weavers, The Beaver Coat, and

The Assumption of Hannele.

mountains and staged

in Berlin, in

1889,

a haunting tragedy with loose construction.

The

in the Silesian

was

ribald father and his

who

Before Dawn, written

kills

bine to

low

associates,

and the daughter,

herself to escape assault at their hands, com-

make

a gripping, repulsive story with certain

dramatic possibilities that are not

The Weavers showed progress


terization of a group.

Here no

fulfilled.

in technic

and charac-

single individual plays

the leading part; the group of weavers, the

the time of
8

crisis,

D. Appleton

&

are the principal actors.

Co.,

New

York, 1925.

mob

at

There are

GERHART HAUPTMANN
marked

139

home

contrasts in setting between the

of the

and the poverty of the weavers, between

rich capitalist

the government's indifference and the industrial slav-

One

ery of the victims of rapacity.

poignant passages
in

Act

the

monologue of old Ansorge,


King

II; he cannot believe that the

to help them, if

When

is

word

is

of the most

sent to

Jaeger assures him

it

is

him of

will fail

their needs.

that the rich

futile,

people are as "cunning as the devil," his lament for the

home
the

that must be sacrificed,

where

his father sat at

loom for more than forty years,

is

pathetic and

dramatic.

The Assumption of Hannele, which appeared

in

1893 anc* na d a germ-idea not unlike that of Before

Dawn,

created sharp discussion in

was protest against


was brought

to the

Germany.

performance.

its

The

There

next year

United States, to be staged

it

at the

Avenue Theatre in New York. It was translated into English by William Archer and by Charles
Henry Meltzer. Reformers of many kinds denounced

Fifth

the play without

author,

hearing.

who had come

formance and
the

same

fate

They

threatened the

to this country to see the per-

to advise with his publisher, with arrest;

was

to fall

upon the translator, Charles

Henry Meltzer, and the actress who was to play the


"Some representatives of the press, with
leading role.
critics

and authors, were bidden to

private

per-

THE NOBEL

4o

PRIZE WINNERS

formance and the next day the newspapers, with a few


impenitent exceptions, 'published eulogies of Hannele!

No

And

one was arrested.

took place. "

the public performance

The American

translator of both

The Assumption

Mr. Charles Henry


Meltzer, has described Hauptmann at this period, in
the Foreword to The Sunken Bell.
He had expected

of Hannele and

to

The Sunken

meet an aggressive,

trary,

he found one

shy, boyish

self-satisfied

who seemed
U

On

man.

the con-

like a student,

manners; he might have been

curate or a teacher;

earnestness

Bell,

classified as a

painful, introspective,

was stamped upon

thinker, a dreamer, a genius"

his face

hunted

the face of a

(Foreword).

New

with

Hannele

was not

a success theatrically in

York.

The

Weavers,

at the Irving Place Theatre, attracted

some-

what more attention but the time was too

indifferent

to such plays in America; one could not forecast the

cordial reception for problem plays and grim tragedies,


It

with mystic elements, three decades

later.

was eighteen years before the Swedish Academy

gave world recognition and honor to Hauptmann.

few men and women of literary

sight

proclaimed

insight

or

fore-

a future for the creator of such a

9 The Sunken Bell: a Fairy Play in Five Acts by Gerhart Hauptmann, freely rendered into English verse by Charles Henry Meltzer,
New York, 191 3, Foreword. By permission of Doubleday, Page & Co.

GERHART HAUPTMANN
"dream-poem"

came

as

Hannele.

141

Gradually, readers be-

interested and stirred by this strange play based

upon the weird apparitions of the fevered brain of the


little

waif, the poetic chorus of the angels, the comfort

of her mother and Pastor Gottwald, in contrast with


the terrifying fear of her father's return, the stormy

December evening

mountain almshouse, and the

in this

poems of "The Stranger" which


upon the reader,

ligious peace
light

"dream-poem,"

as

Hauptmann

the Grillparzer prize in

of re-

green

as the mystic,

critics,

called

Germany.

after the failure of Florian

Geyer

it,

won

Two
to

This

for

him

years later,

win plaudits of

he wrote another play of symbolism

and anapestic meters, combining the

realities

with mystic allurements, and he called

Tale Play," Die versunkene Glocke.


critics

spell

upon the face of dying Hannele.

fell

dramatic

cast a

were convinced of

it

"A

of

life

Fairy-

His most severe

his lyrical quality

and dra-

matic power.

The
says

its

basic material for this play,


translator,

Mr. Meltzer,

Teutonic Mythology.
bell

maker,

Here

is

The Sunken
found

in

Bell,

Grimm's

are the characters of the

his wife, the elfish spirit, the

schoolmaster

and the vicar, and other factors interwoven with the


allegorical

and mystical.

Hauptmann

characters with consummate


forger,

who

skill.

visualized these

Heinrich, the bell

seeks the sun and a new, marvellous chime

THE NOBEL

142
of

bells,

from

Magda,

his faithful wife eager to free

domestic

toils,

aspirations,

Rautendelein,

away and

nature that lures him


fulfilled

PRIZE WINNERS
the

him
of

spirit

stirs his soul to un-

and Wittikin, the wise woman,

the village priest and barber

are alive and con-

all

The

evasive and mystical element becomes


u
a part of the atmosphere of this
fairy-tale play";

vincing.

the dramatic unities are well maintained.

What is the meaning of The Sunken Bell? Each


reader may make his own answer, for several are posIt is as futile to

sible.

analyze

Brutus.

It

is

as

it is

to destroy the

Pan or The Blue Bird

fantasy and mystery of Peter

Dear

it,

too subtle,

too delicate to be

treated by rigid rules of criticism.

However, Mr.

Meltzer makes three pertinent explanations;


be a parable, the effort of
ideals
ciety

it

may

all

or

it

may

artists to reach their

be the effort of a reformer to remold

so-

by visionary ambitions or Heinrich may embody


;

any human being, striving for the goal of truth and


light.

As

offers

freedom,

Rautendelein

philosophy of

so

life,

symbolizes

Wittikin

Nature

expresses

the

which
eternal

opposed to the conventional creeds

of the world, like those of the barber and the vicar,


that are stumbling-blocks in the path of lofty idealism.

Heinrich

fails to attain his ideal;

pagan and Christian truths


he

is

human, with

limitations.

he cannot weld the

into one gospel, because

He

cannot stay on the

GERHART HAUPTMANN
pinnacle of the mountain, with

new

mystic light and

but he has not lost the

sun-bells,

these in his

its

When

life.

143
its

of

influence

the vicar rejoices that "the old

Heinrich" has returned, he answers:


That man am I, and yet
another man.
Open the windows Light and God stream in. 10
.

This play proved a moderate success, especially when


played by Sothern, and has been repeated
circles,

as

although

has not been so popular

in

America

have been the plays by Ibsen, Rostand, and Maeter-

linck.
its

it

academic

in

It is

one of the dramas that yields more of

beauty and symbolic message to the reader than to

the spectator.

The

play,

Henry of Aue, or Der arme

Heinrich, which was called a fable (1902) has sometimes been listed as a sequel to

The Sunken

they are unlike in setting and theme.


crusader,

glory

is

Bell but

Heinrich, the

attacked with leprosy at the summit of his

punishment for

healing begins

his insolence to

when he purges

God.

his soul of despair

The
and

Nature

hatred and begins to recognize "Beneficence"

in

and Life.

especially

Heinrich,

There are well drawn characters,

Hartmann von Aue,

Gottfried, Brigitta, and

Ottegebe, the farmer's daughter, whose influence


strong
10

in the

"cure" for the hero.

As dramatic

is

art

The Sunken Bell by Gerhart Hauptraann, freely rendered into


English verse by Charles Henry Meltzer, New York, 1913, Act III.
By permission of Doubleday, Page & Co.

THE NOBEL

44

play

this

inferior to

is

PRIZE WINNERS
Hannele or The Sunken

but the reader's interest


character,

from

sustained in the leading

is

tragic

his

Bell,

condition

an outcast,

as

with a wooden clapper to warn people of his approach,


to the last scene of his redemption by love.

During the years

Hauptmann

since he received the

Nobel

prize,

has written several plays and novels that

continue to reveal his dual traits as realist and idealist.

The

writings during the

World War have

a tang of

Ludwig Lewisohn has edited nine volumes


of Hauptmann's Dramatic Works (Huebsch, The Vik-

bitterness.

ing Press,

New

York).

The

introductions

are

forming and the translations are clear and strong.

in-

In

the series are included several Social and Domestic

Plays as well as "Symbolic and Legendary Dramas."


Parsival, a play translated by

Oakley Williams, has

an ethical or religious tone with sympathetic insight


into humanity.
val's

"Heartache" was the name of Parsi-

mother; said her creator, "I should hate to

make anyone

sad, but I believe

mother, at any rate, very, very,

we might call every


many mothers by this

name." n

There are symbolism and poetic sermoniz-

ing in this

drama of

his

development from a care-free youth to later respon-

sibilities

11

Parsival, "Bearer of Burdens";

for world burdens

is

well portrayed.

Traces

Parsival, a play by Gerhart Hauptmann, translated by Oakley


Williams, New York, 191 5. By permission of The Macmillan Co.

GERHART HAUPTMANN
of irony and
play,

humor

And Pippa

The

are found.

Dances,

Wann

tales of "the

Wild Huntsman"

setting of the

picturesque, in the Silesian

is

mountains.

is

145

grotesque element and the


are entertaining; Pippa,

the fair-haired daughter of the glass blower,

There

persuasive character.
unity in

certain

scenes.

is

is

the

lack of dramatic

Translations of this play,

and of Elga, have been made by Mary Harned


Poet Lore

in

Dances

is

(Boston,

included in

And Pippa

906-1 909).

Volume

of the plays edited by

Mr. Lewisohn.

Among

interesting, intensive studies of

as dramatist,

is

the thesis by

Gerhart Hauptmann

on

Parallel

1917).

Walter H.

P.

The

Trumbaeur,

and John Galsworthy ; a

(University of Pennsylvania,

12

Hauptmann

parallelism

is

Philadelphia,

traced, with occasional

excess of effort, between their careers, their themes,

and certain plays

like

Michael Kramer and


and

Strife.

Hannele and The

Bit o Love, and

Both dramatists, says the

Little

Dream,

The Weavers
critic,

seek to

escape social bondage; both are vitally concerned in


social

problems; both are

realists

temperamentally;

both have a purpose to enlighten rather than to delight;


both see moral values and,

Hauptmann

is

more

interested

Galsworthy's main interest


12

By

also, the irony of things.

lies in

in

characters while

the relations between

permission of the University of Pennsylvania Press.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

46

In both writers, there

characters.

is

a strain of ideal-

ism, seeking truth, material and spiritual.

Another

Mary Ayres Quimby,

on Nature

interesting thesis

Background
(University

Among

in

of

is

by

Dramas

the

of Gerhart

Pennsylvania,

later plays

Hauptmann

Philadelphia,

191 8).

Winter Ballad and The Festival

Play register the fearless assault of this dramatist

upon vices and the exaltation of an idealism which

is

"union with Nature."

The

best

work of Hauptmann

in

fiction

has been

attracting attention and becoming familiar to English

The Fool

readers.

been translated by
Atlantis,

in

Emanuel Quint has

Christ:

Thomas

Seltzer (Huebsch, 191

by Adele and

translated

Thomas

1 )

Seltzer

and Phantom and The Heretic of Soana, both


translated by Bayard Quincy Morgan (1922-1923).
(191 2 )

The

characterizations are forceful, with

sometimes broad and, again,

and exposition of modern

subtle.

social

humor
Daring

problems are

that

is

satire

qualities

that arrest the interest of the reader and attest the


brilliant

novel,

mind of the

writer, in the recent, neo-romantic

The Island of

the Great

year by Willa and Edwin


leaders in this

"Women's

shrewd, ironical

skill.

on the

island, passes

Mother, translated

Muir (Huebsch).

this

The

State" are delineated with

Phaon, the

solitary "masculine"

through strange adventures before

he reaches maturity and finds his "ideal woman."

In

GERHART HAUPTMANN
plays,

the

Hauptmann's

illumining analysis of

his keen,

147

Hannele and The Sunken

Bell, in

Modern Drama (New York, 1925),

Clark accepts the statement of other

pieces

which are high lights


"psychological

Study of

Barrett

them

in this writer's

dramatic

interest,

H.

critics that these

are not "well-made plays/' but he finds in


qualities

poetic

as

the

masterdistin-

guished from purely lyrical poetry, a fairly well constructed plot and an atmosphere of beauty."

Hauptmann
novels; he

is

continues

a vital influence

tion of writers as well as

The Heretic of Soana

is

both

write

to

13

plays

and

upon the younger genera-

upon

now

his contemporaries.

listed in

The Modern

Library, testimony to the popularity and value of this

work of

fiction.

artists in his

He

is

an

artist

and he can create

dramas; witness "Michael Kramer" and

Heinrich of The Sunken Bell.


13 P. 82.

By permission

of D. Appleton

&

Co.

CHAPTER

IX

MAETERLINCK BELGIAN SYMBOLIST AND


POET-PLAYWRIGHT (1911)
The

prize of 191

has been awarded:

Maeterlinck, Maurice, born 1862: "because of his many-sided


literary activity

and

especially because of his dramatic creations

which are marked by wealth of fancy and poetic idealism that


sometimes, in the fairy play's veiled form, reveals deep inspiration and, also, in a mysterious

ing and imagination."

way, appeals to the reader's

feel-

The first decade of the Nobel prizes was over and


new group of candidates was coming into the literary

limelight

that the
the

in

191

1.

There was hopeful speculation

award might go

to either Russia or America,

two larger countries that have not yet been

cluded.

There was, however,

in-

new type of poetry and

drama, and a writer of unique personality, that were


attracting widespread interest

namely,

the mystical

The

and symbolic plays by Maurice Maeterlinck.


nouncement that he was the winner for 191

much

pride to the

terlinck
1

little

wrote most of

an-

caused

kingdom of Belgium.

Mae-

his plays

Inscription with the Nobel Prize

148

Award

in

French so they

in Literature, 1911.

By

courtesy of Dodd,

Mead

&

Co.

MAURICE MAETERLINCK

MAETERLINCK

149

gained readers more quickly than those of his Belgian

On

predecessors and contemporaries.

the Scent, the

drama by Charles Van Lerberghe, has been compared


to Maeterlinck's earlier work by Barrett H. Clark in

A Study

of the

wrights

commended by Mr. Clark

and

Edmond

Modern Drama. 2

Nobel honor came to him.


of good ancestry.

ings of his early life

Maubel

Flemish peasants as they

doorways of

fifty

years old

He was born
He recalled the

when
in

the

Ghent,

surround-

the gardens and the sea and the

Especially

ships in sight.

in the

are Henri

Picard.

Maeterlinck was not quite

in 1862,

Other Belgian play-

was he

interested in the

sat, in quiet, stolid attitudes,

their cottages or

by the smoking

One group impressed his boyhood memory,


seven toothhe saw them on his way from school

lamps.

as

less

brothers and a

lives

sister.

awakened him,

in

Their lethargy and inert

young manhood, to psycho-

logical curiosity; their strange traditions

ing fears are


father

reflected in

was anxious

and practised for a

to

some of

and unreason-

his

plays.

His

have him study law, so he read

little

time

in

Ghent

long enough

"to lose a case or two," he said with humorous reminiscence.

He

showed

spent seven years at a Jesuit College, and

mind of philosophical

that in Paris he might


2

New

York, 1925,

p.

161.

come

trend.

He

into contact with

thought

men

of

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

5o

literary

and

rank

pecial influence there

Octave Mirabeau to
first

scholars.
;

was

Villiers

his

es-

another inspirational friend was

whom

Maeterlinck dedicated his

published plays, Princess Maleine and Pelleas and

Melisande.

In

extravagant

too

Mirabeau

praise

hailed Maeterlinck as "the Belgian Shakespeare" and

Maeterlinck became the victim of


hand, and ridicule on the other.
with calm dignity then as he has
serene

manner and low

voice,

in

flattery,

He
all

on one

bore himself
his

life;

his

contrast with his

muscular physique, have been noted by

many

acquaint-

ances.

Before the death of


to

his father, in 1889,

he returned

Belgium and lived there for seven years, continuing

his studies of nature

and metaphysics, writing mario-

nette plays,

and more serious dramas, and making

translations

from authors of other tongues, including

English, that left impressions upon his mind.

clared that the three writers

who

He

de-

exerted the strongest

influence during these formative years

were Emerson,

Novalis, and Ruysbroeck, the medieval mystic whose

when he was
To visitors from

writings were translated by Maeterlinck


a

student at the Jesuit College.

worn copy of Emerson.


On Emerson and Other Essays,

America he delights to show


In his collected studies,
translated by

Montrose

J.

his

Moses, he summarizes the

Concord philosopher's thoughts about "the greatness

MAETERLINCK

151

of man's spiritual nature, about the forces of the soul."


In conclusion of his vital influence, he writes:

"Emer-

son has come to affirm simply this equal and secret

grandeur of our
silence

He

life.

has encompassed us with

He

and with wonder.

workman

light beneath the feet of the

workshop.

He

and earth,

at the

has placed a shaft of

has shown us

same time

all

as he leaves the

the powers of heaven

intent

on sustaining the

threshold on which two neighbors speak of the rain


that falls or the

And

wind that blows.

above these

two passers-by who accost each other, he has made

God who

us see the countenance of

He

countenance of God.

our

common

life.

assiduous, the

He

is

is

smiles with the

nearer than any other to

the most attentive, the most

most honest, the most scrupulous, and

probably the most human of guides.

He

is

the sage

of commonplace days, and commonplace days are, in

sum, the substance of our being."

In 1896 Maeterlinck returned to Paris and there he

has

made

his

home.

He

refused to

renounce his

Belgian citizenship, however, that he might become a

member

of the French

did valiant service in


In his

home town

On Emerson and

by Montrose

Mead &

Co.

J.

Academy; during

many ways

to-day,

and

the

war he

for his native country.

at Brussels, the visitor

Other Essays by Maurice Maeterlinck, translated


Moses, New York, 1912. By permission of Dodd,

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

52

told of Belgian pride in Maeterlinck; the people

is

"You know he has

say,

but he

life

years

The

The

Blind,

Intruder,

The Seven

Alladine and Palomides and

cesses,

To

a true patriot, just the same."

is

the

Belgium, between 1889 an d 1896, belong such

in

plays as

Tintagiles.
in

lived in Paris almost all his

It is a question

Prin-

The Death of

whether he has surpassed,

dramatic vigor combined with mystic beauty, that

play of earlier period, Pelleas and Melisande.


the story of Paolo

theme,

and

the book.

in

it

resembles

in

has an appealing quality both on the stage

it

The

death of Melisande,

tragic

murder of her lover and the

after the

daughter,

The

and Francesca, which

Like

reflects

of dramatic power.

high-light

birth of her

lines are simple in diction, masterly in structure

and suggestion.

One of

the

first

translators of

Maeterlinck into

English was Richard Hovey, the brilliant American


poet

who

umes,
1

In two decorative vol-

died in his prime.

first

issued in Chicago

(Stone

&

Kimball)

in

894-1 896, he interpreted, as well as translated, these

earlier plays already cited.


first

volume

drama.

is

The

informing for

Mr. Hovey

defined

all

Introduction in the
students of

Symbolism,

as

modern
distin-

guished from Realism and Expressionism; he joined


with the

name of Maeterlinck,

such other exponents of

Symbolism as Mallarme, Gilbert Parker, and

Bliss


MAETERLINCK
Two

Carman.

153
Belgian from

traits distinguished the

other symbolists of his day, according to this interpreter

"the

peculiarity

of

limitation of his emotional range."


iteration

is

cited as a

emphasis.

The

French characteristic for

is

menace

noted by Mr. Hovey:

always terror
churchyard.

Poe
his,

is

He

is

as masterly in his

the

tragic

More

another

re-

"His master-tone

terror, too, of one type

effective

to Maeterlinck.

true of his earlier than his later plays


striction

use of re-

"The danger-border between

and the ridiculous"

and the

technique,

his

that of the

the poet of the sepulchre, like

own methods

as

Poe was

and destined, perhaps, to exert the same wide

fluence."

is

Premonition plays a large part

plays of Maeterlinck from

in

in-

the

Home

The Blind and

in

to

Joyzelle.

In Paris, under the stimulus of literary associates

and the comradeship of Georgette Le Blanc (the actress

who became
that

his wife),

register his

Maeterlinck wrote three plays

dramatic climax

Joyzelle,

Monna

Vanna (1903) and The Blue Bird (1908). Probably,


the last symbolic drama was the primal cause of the
Nobel award. The idealism, the delicate fancy, the
imaginative charm, the fascinating characters in every
scene, real or fantastic,

and the pervasive message for


ii...

!,

4 The Plays
of Maurice Maeterlinck, translated by Richard Hovey,
Chicago, 1894-96.

THE NOBEL

154

PRIZE WINNERS

every age and land, give to this play a perennial ap-

As Maeterlinck affirmed, this play, like others


type, may lose some of its "mystic transparency"

peal.

of the

and symbolism on the stage but


both as acted play and as a

it

has been alluring

Why

film.

there should

have been "a sequel" to such a perfect, complete play as

The Blue Bird

a question that has troubled

is

Resentment against The Betrothal, the con-

critic.

tinuance of this fairy-tale play, however, gives


fore

many

appreciation

At

message.

the

of

its

fine

passages

way

and strong

same time, the impression

lingers

grown

that Tyltyl, like Peter Pan, should "never have

up."

be-

Alexander Teixeira de Mattos has made

a fine

The Betrothal and Edith Wynne Mattison was a charming "Fairy Berylune," when the play
was given in New York. Here Maeterlinck ven-

translation of

tured almost too near the borderland between fantasy and farce, especially in Act II, where the girls,

who would marry

Tyltyl,

reveal

their

lower

na-

tures.

The

versatility of

Maeterlinck

is

evidenced by com-

paring such plays, within ten years, as Joyzelle and

The Blue

Bird,

Monna Vanna

and

Mary Magdalene.

Joyzelle has elements of dramatic ecstasy with a tragic

undertone.

Professor William Lyon Phelps has sum-

marized well the

salient qualities of this play

heroine in Essays on

and

its

Modern Dramatists (New York,

MAETERLINCK
192 1

Monna Vanna

linck's wife,

is

written especially for Maeter-

a rare blend of intense

convincing characters with a

Giovanna, or

reason.

155

crisis

emotionalism and

which challenges the

Monna Vanna,

wife of Guido

Colonna, commander of the garrison at Pisa, will

remain as Maeterlinck's most


valle,

general of the Florentines

lover,

is

Ten

and her boyhood

an idealized hero for his age but convincing

Medieval atmosphere and dramatic

in his chivalry.

accentuate the strong dialogue

action

Prinzi-

vital heroine.

years later, in 19 13, appeared

of this play.

Mary Magdalene.

In his Introduction, Maeterlinck relates, with some

win cordial response from Paul

feeling, his effort to

who had

Heyse,

written a play on the same theme

and with certain situations that the Belgian wished to

Meeting with

use.

a refusal,

"none too courteous

regret to say," he decided to take his privilege of

using Biblical words and his previously conceived situation.

He

lines;

to Joseph of Arimethea, she says,

those

To

gives to

whom we

the

Mary Magdalene

save

we listen to them afterwards."


Roman Verus, who would have her save Jesus

sin against all that

could save him

spite

"We

love;

by yielding herself to him, she replies:


haps

few masterly

of myself.

which you

he loves, to save what

in spite

If I

offer, all that

"I should perI love.

of himself; but no longer in

bought

his

he wished,

life
all

at

the price

that he loved,

THE NOBEL

56

would be dead.

cannot plunge the flame into the

mire to save the lamp."

The war

left

PRIZE WINNERS
5

deep scars upon Maeterlinck's

spirit;

they are reflected in such essays and plays as The

Wrack

master at

War, The BurgoStilemonde, The Cloud that Lifted, and The

Power of

the

in the

of the Storm, Belgium at

book

interest

Some

Dead.

first

which

of the essays, or chapters,

mentioned, deal with psychometry, the


is

expanded

in

other books like

The

Great Secret, Our Eternity, The Unknown Guest, and

The Light Beyond.

That man

seen forces, that he

is

is

the product of un-

molded by "hidden powers,"

that humanity and nature are always closely linked,

were tenets that underlay such books as Treasure of

Humble, Life and Flowers, and The Life of the


Bee.
He became a beekeeper that he might study at

the

first-hand the traits of these

analogy to humanity

done more recently

much

in

The

workers and apply their


as Dallas

Lore Sharp has

Spirit of the Hive.

In the

beehives and the garden, Maeterlinck finds the same

complications and conflicts, the same "domination of


the spirit of the race," as
in his earlier

among men.

In an essay

book, Treasure of the Humble, he ex-

pressed a surety which has been verified with the pass-

Mary Magdalene by Maurice Maeterlinck, translated by Alexander Teixeira de Mattos, New York, 1910, Act IV. By permission
of Dodd, Mead & Co.
5

MAETERLINCK
U
years:
A time may come

ing of the

many

things herald

perhaps,

when our

its

souls

157

perhaps

and

approach a time will come,


will know each other without

the intermediary of the senses."

To

penetrate beyond the tangible things of

quires courage but brings light to the spirit.


plays,

life re-

In his

Ariadne and Blue Beard and Sister Beatrice,

Bernard

by

translated

Miall

English

into

verse

(191 6), and The Miracle of Saint Anthony, translated by Alexander Teixeira de

Mattos (1918), Mae-

terlinck has suggested the neglected but

magic "key"

which may gain for us new adventures into "the prohibitions of the tangible world."
his earlier plays

trates the

symbolized by him as
as analogous to the

He

his writings, but

of

has become the intuition which pene-

unknown and

of the bees.

The premonition

Life has been

supernatural.

a garden," as an "inner temple,"

world of plants and "the swarm"

seldom reveals passionate feeling

in

he exemplifies search for truth, "care

for moral stoic beauty."

Intuition,

as interpreted

by Bergson, he has expanded into the "raison mystique"

by which one

may

unknown and the


shades of gloom and sadness in

penetrate the

mystic.

There are

many of

his plays; his characters are

in conflict

sometimes weak

with the forces about them; there are hints

Some Modern Belgian Writers by Turquet Milnes, New York,

1917.

THE NOBEL

158

PRIZE WINNERS
The Intruder, The Death of

of fatalism

in

Tintagiles,

and Interior, but the keynote of Maeter-

plays like

linck, in his maturity,

ress

has been that of spiritual prog-

and mystic idealism.

During recent years


sounded

two books

in

mature keynote has been

this

one

of profound thought,

The

Life of Space, translated by Bernard Miall (1928),

and the other, more poetic and mystical, Magic of the


Stars, translated

With

by Alfred Sutro (1930).

that

raison mystique in which he places confidence, he has

evolved some deductions that are convincing to him,

amid much

As

spiritual mystery.

companion volume to

his earlier study,

The

Life of the Bee, he wrote The Life of the White Ant,

by

translated

Bernard

Miall

Maeterlinck writes he gives to


he

terest;

is

never superficial

He

literature.

Whatever

(1930).

his deep, sincere in-

it

in his attitude to life

dramatizes his studies of bees and ants;

he humanizes his plays of real


In a letter to Barrett

H.

life

and mystical poetry.

Clark, in explanation of

"static," as applied to his plays,

he wrote; "Whether

a play be static, or dynamic, symbolistic or realistic,

of

little

What

consequence.

written, well thought out,

perhuman,
rest
7

is

in the

mere

or

matters

is

human, and,

that
if

it

be well

possible, su-

deepest significance of the term.

rhetoric."

Study of the Modern

Drama by

is

Barrett H. Clark,

p. 163.

The

CHAPTER X
RABINDRANATH TAGORE: BENGALESE
MYSTIC-POET
The

prize for the year 191 3 has been

Rabindranath Tagore, born 1861

awarded:

"For reason

of the inner

depth and the high aim revealed in his poetic writings; also
for the brilliant

freshness of his

Western

As

way

which he translates the beauty and


Oriental thought into the accepted forms of
in

belles-lettres."

a Bengalese,

Rabindranath Tagore, to

Nobel prize was given

in

19 13,

is

whom

the

a British subject.

Thus, for the second time, the honor came to Great

whose formative

Britain through the writings of one


years, like those of Kipling,

and whose
country.

typical writings

On

form and

the contrary, the

spirit,

in

India

were associated with that

this mystic-poet are so exotic,


in

had been spent

words and thoughts of

sometimes so unlocalized

that they belong to world literature,

rather than to a distinctive country.

Possibly no other

prize winner has been so idealistic, so international in


his appeal as this

author of The Gardener, Sadhana,

and The King of the Dark Chamber.


1

Inscription with the Nobel Prize

159

Award

in Literature, 1913.

THE NOBEL

160

PRIZE WINNERS

In his biographical study, 2 Ernest Rhys suggests that

award was given

the

to

Tagore because of

the enthu-

siasm of a Swedish Orientalist for his writings before

known

they were

in

The

English.

year before the

award, however, Yeats had praised the poems of Tagore 3 and other poet-critics had found him an inspira-

To

tional influence.

the winner, the announcement

gave mingled gratitude and regret; the


pressed in his sentence,
4

refuge."

His

life

latter he ex-

They have taken away my

had been so untouched by external

struggles that he was, in truth, "a child of Nature."

My

In

years

Each one of the cocoanut

had for me

Born

a distinct personality.

call

me

to join

in Calcutta,

it

May

inheritance for his later


writer.
in India,

Like

On

garden
opening

all

like a
6,

playmate."

1861, he came into a rare

work

as religious leader

and

children of the higher social classes

he was environed from his birth with poetic

atmosphere.
2

trees in our

eyes every morning, the blithely awakening world

used to

earliest

enjoyed a simple and intimate communion with

Nature.

my

"From my

Reminiscences, he writes:

His

blessing,

as a

newborn babe, was

Rabindranath Tagore by Ernest Rhys, New York, 1915.


Gitanjali, with Introduction by W. B. Yeats, London and

New

York, 1913.
4 Rabindranath Tagore: a Biographical
York, 191 5, Preface, xiv. By permission
5 My
Reminiscences by Rabindranath
By permission of the Macmillan
p. 225.

Study by Ernest Rhys,

New

of the Macmillan Co.

Tagore,
Co,

New

York,

1917^

Copyright by Underwood

&

Underwood, A.

Y.

RABINDRANATH TAGORE

RABINDRANATH TAGORE
spoken

were

in

verse; as he

The

poetic form.

in

grew older many of


family

161
his studies

name was Thakur,

Anglicized into Tagore; his father and grandfathers

had been
Raja
the

Sir Sourindra

was

civil

Mohun Tagore was

Bengal Music School;

Tagore,

and

identified with education

another,

and leader

noted painter

(a great king) but he preferred to be

great sage), thus he was

more

in

art-

Maharaja

Maharshi (a

closely linked with the

He

people than with nobility.

founder of

Abanindranath

His father might have been

movements.

reforms.

insisted

had

debts which his father, a prince,

upon paying

left.

He

would

have made himself a pauper but the creditors refused


to accept such sacrifices, so he

He

of property.
ings

a certain

amount

devoted himself to spiritual teach-

and traveled through India on such missions,

gaining the respect of

The

son

est in a

He was

who won

all classes.

this

Nobel prize was the young-

family of seven brothers and three


lonely as a child, for his

was young and he was often

The

days.

days"
ture

had

his

left

sisters.

mother died when

he'

with men-servants for

return of his father

marked

the "gala-

presence pervaded the whole house.

Na-

was the boy's comrade and he would often dig

with a

bamboo

"mysteries."

stick in the

Perfumes

ground

to find any possible

affected his senses

and

vivid memories, as he tells in his Reminiscences.

left

The

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

62

school

life,

after he

unhappiness.

He

was

six years,

was

a brief period of

was, perhaps, stubborn to a degree

and was ranked as the lowest

because he re-

in his class

fused to answer orally, but he thought out problems so


well, in written

work, that he amazed

and

his teachers

him "prison-houses."

The Oriental Seminary, the


Bengal Academy all seemed to
At home he studied, with a tu-

tor, history, sciences,

and English

was given

Normal

first

place.

School, the

literature.

At

first,

he laughed, somewhat scornfully, at English poetry because of the unusual sounds.

An

influence of this formative age

was

nephew

his

older than he was, Jyotiprokash, who read Hamlet


to the lad

imaginings.

and urged him to write verses and poetic

He

saw

a future for this

and love of Nature.

fancies

School, also, inspired

him

plete lines or stanzas

Although

other.

A teacher

boy with

at the

to write, asking

his

Normal

him

to

com-

which had been begun by an-

his father

was often separated from

the boy, he realized the child's promise and his sensitive

nature; he gave him a vacation trip into the

Himalayas, stopping

where
to

at

Bolpur, the Peace Cottage,

his father often retired

have

his

own home

later.

and where the son was

In his "blue blank-book,"

that he carried always with him, were written

suggested by scenery and incidents of this

trip.

poems
His

father taught him botany and astronomy, as well as

RABINDRANATH TAGORE
Back

English, Sanskrit, and Bengali.

in

163

Calcutta he

"played truant from school," sometimes, and caused


his older sister to write in despair of the fulfillment of

their hopes for

man

successful

London

him; that he would be "the only un-

in

to study

the family. 6

For

a year he

went to

law but he was homesick and returned

to Bengal.

In his Reminiscences at

fifty,

he recalled the years

between sixteen and twenty-three as those of unrest

and "extreme wildness."

He

was

the victim of the

impulses of strong, young manhood; for a time he was

He

an epicure rather than a mystic.

robes and luscious foods and romances

silk

An

delighted in

expression of this time

may

be found

"The Gleaming Vision of Youth,"


Other

reflections are in

religious

married happily;

poem,

The Gardener.

in

Two

"The Eternity
from

cate the period of transition

years of

in the

love.

Sandhya Sangit and The Songs

of Sunrise, more philosophical.


Eternity of Life" and

in

meditation.

At

poems, "The

of Death," indithis

time to the

twenty-three

at the request of his father, he

to oversee the family estate at Shilaida,

he

went

on the Ganges.

Here, with intervals of travel, he remained for seventeen years, living close to the people and to Nature,

and writing some of


6
p.

his tales

and poems.

Rabindranath Tagore by Basanta Koomar Roy,


52.

One of
New

his

York, 1915,

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

64

most famous love poems, showing mingled sensuous


and
the

spiritual strains,

"The Beloved

is

at

Noon and

in

Morning."

In a house boat on the

Padma

he often spent hours

of meditation, long evenings of reverie, that were


tured

in the

Bengal."

background of

He

"Golden

his idyllic song,

studied the poverty,

trials,

pic-

and simple

idealism of the people; he

knew elementary medicine

and cared for the

he was

sick;

saddened by the

loss of rice crops in destructive rains; he

mined that tenants should not


gatherers.

He

suffer

was

deter-

unduly from tax-

brought upon himself the jealous

cism of British magistrates

in

criti-

and was

the district

He

and visionary disturber.

called a revolutionary

had already formulated

his ideas of

public and the school at Bolpur

both a small

when he was

rupted in his plans by domestic sorrows.

He

re-

inter-

jour-

neyed to England and the United States for recuperation and inspiration.

The

first

grief

was the death of

he had a deep love.

his wife for

Within a few months

his

whom

daughter

Shortly afterwards came

died of tuberculosis.

an-

other poignant sorrow in the loss of his youngest son.

With
as

the serenity of a

mother and

mind

that recognizes

friend, he turned

relations with spiritual

Nature

toward more intimate

and religious thoughts.

are revealed especially in Gitanjali, the

first

These

book by

RABINDRANATH TAGORE

165

which he became well known to English readers.

It

English with vigor and grace, with

dis-

was written

in

In 191 2-13 he came to the United

tinctive structure.

States, partly for a

change of scene, partly to add to

knowledge of

improvements and

his

industrial

tural equipment, that he


in his school at

might apply

information

this

His older son was with him,

Bolpur.

methods of harvesting.

to learn

agricul-

study of Tagore, Basanta

In his biographical

Koomar Roy

tells interest-

ing facts about the visit to this poet and discussion,

with him, of the possibilities that he might win the

Nobel

He

prize.

He

his son.

climate

was then

at

Urbana,

Illinois,

with

was impressed with the sunshine of our

"enchanted American days" he

called them.

He

liked the superior engineering

ties

of Americans but he deplored their lack of culture.

He

was urged

to translate

and business

more of

abili-

his writings into

English and was assured that, should he win the Nobel


prize,

it

would increase

world peace, as well as

international brotherhood and


raise India

among

the nations.

Sceptical of the probability he said, should

him, he would use the

partment

money

in his school at

it

come

to

to start an industrial de-

Bolpur.

Ten months later the award was made to Tagore.


Some of his compatriots were his most severe critics,
complaining that he "dabbled" in too many forms of
7 Ibid.,

pp. 189-193.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

66

He

literature.

admitted the charge but averred that

poetry represented "the deep truth" of his


poet he has revived the work,

in kind,

As

life.

of the Vaishnava

poets of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, of mystic

who

writers like the Upanishads

and 1000

He

B. c.

modern

poets to

spiritual

Ram Mohun Roy

In his

the eighteenth.

work of Bengalese

like

Raja

and Bankim, who had cleared away

of

obstacles

was indebted,

progress he has shown marked

originality, following the

many

He

mystic of the fifteenth century, and

Ramprosad of Bengal, of

form and

between 2000

adapted the beauties of these

interpretation.

also, to Kabir, the

to

lived

domination

British

over

native

expression.

Much

has been written about the school at Bolpur

to which, true to his promise, he has devoted funds

from

his

award.

of Life, are found several of the "student

ization

addresses"
tions

In his essays, Sadhana, or the Real-

made

here; the

war caused changed

condi-

and frustrated some of the founder's hopes.

This school was started


father,

1902,

in

approved by

and with the goal, "To revive the

ancient system of education


feel that there

is

a higher

practical efficiency."
curiosity

and

some

At

...

and

to

make

spirit

his

of our

the students

a nobler thing in life than

first,

scorn.

manageable or backward boys.

such a venture met with

Parents

sent

They had

here

un-

simple sur-

RABINDRANATH TAGORE

167

roundings and lived and slept outdoors; they sang


chants as the birds begin their morning songs; they

had time for individual prayer and thought, clad


white

They enjoyed games and long

silk robes.

in

walks,

simple food, no wine or meat, music in the evening

and plays, written by Rabindranath Tagore; they


wrote and illustrated school papers.

government and

relations

self-

between

Their scholastic work became

and teachers.

boys

brotherly

close,

There was

satisfactory to the University at Calcutta.

The boys

were happy, often refusing to go home

for

their

their

par-

vacations,

unless compelled

to

do so by

ents.

In

addition

to

his

work

as

educator

for boys,

Rabindranath Tagore has been a strong influence for

more

He
is

training and

freedom for the women of India.

believes that the life of

more

full

woman,

in a

generic sense,

and harmonious than that of man.

He

found the ideas of both Hindu teachers and Christian


missionaries were extreme, as he viewed them, but he

advocated education and broadened opportunities.

As

an Oriental he has poetized the love of the home, the

coming of the woman


pitcher of nectar,"

His poetic
in

at the

end of the day, "with a

to bring

play, Chitra,

much

comfort to the home.


discussed and puzzling

passages to a Western mind,

is

a frank exposition

of his philosophy regarding the sensuous and spiritual


THE NOBEL

168
qualities

Home

women.

of

PRIZE WINNERS

Other expressions are

The

in

and the World (1919) and Personality (1917)


plays like Sanyas, and The King and the Queen

and

in

(in

Sacrifice

That he

is

and Other Plays,

a lover of children,

New

York,

19 17).

and able to interpret

their thoughts

and fancies with unmatched beauty,

evident to

readers of Sir Rabindranath Tagore's

writings
plicity

rity

all

(he was knighted in 1915)

of nature and

life,

is

His own sim-

his imagination in its pu-

and freedom, make him an intimate comrade

The

for boys and girls.

Nobel

prize,

Crescent

the

original,

Moon, were

trations in

year after he received the

The

unrhymed poems,

translated, with effective illus-

Stray Birds, with frontispiece in

color.

Pogany (1921), is another appealbook, but more mature and philosophi-

color by Willy
ing and typical
cal.

The

periods of childhood, from babyhood to school

days and letter-writing, are unfolded

Moon

in delightful pictures.

"Baby's World,''

in

The Crescent

Especially intuitive are

"Paper Boats," "The

Little

Big

Man," and "The First Jasmines." Humor enlivens


many of these fancies and questions of the child, as in
"Twelve

O'Clock"

raises a query

why

and
the

"Authorship";

the

mother allows father

latter

to waste

"heaps of paper" without a protest, while a single


sheet, taken for a

paper boat,

may

bring a remon-


RABINDRANATH TAGORE
There

strance to the child.

Oriental philosophy in

have

emotional beauty and

is

"The Beginning."

come from?" asks the

169

Where

and the mother:

child,

She answered half crying, half laughing, and clasping the baby
to her breast,

You were
In

my

all

my heart as
and my loves,

hidden in
hopes

mother you have

in

been nursed for ages.

gaze on your

belong to

all

my

life,

darling.

face,

in the life of

who

rules our

my

home you have

mystery overwhelms me; you

have become mine.

who

the

since

Tagore has translated several of

Nobel award,
poems,

his earlier

My

plays and tales and has written

Reminiscences,

one of the most illumining autobiographies of the

He

During the twelve years

decade.

lived.

In the lap of the deathless Spirit

As

my

its desire,

last

has expanded his ideas on government,

education and religion in books like Nationalism and

He

Creative Unity.

India

may

that she

has written Prayers for

Mother

be raised from her chronic want

to a place of influence

and

success.

He

has urged

united action by the people of England and those of

India to bring about this material union.

"One

section of the

human

The

Crescent

Moon:

Child-Poems

by

By permission

of the Macmillan Co.

its

inherent

Rabindranath

translated from the original Bengali by the author,


1916.

has said,

race cannot be permanently

strong by depriving another section of


8

He

New

Tagore,
York, 1913,

THE NOBEL

7o

Taking

rights."

PRIZE WINNERS
mooted

as his text that

line

from

Kipling,

Oh, East

is

East and

West

is

West and

never the twain shall

meet

Tagore
that,

said, at a

banquet

in

London

"I have learned

though our tongues are different and our habits

dissimilar, at the

East

is

bottom of our hearts we are one.

East and West

should be otherwise

is

but

West

God

forbid that

it

the twain must meet in amity,

peace and mutual understanding; their meeting will be


all

the

more

fruitful because of their differences;

it

must lead both to holy wedlock before the common


altar of

Humanity."

In the sympathetic, analytical study of

Mahatma

Gandhi by Romain Rolland, there are some

excellent

sentences of comparison of these two religious leaders

of

modern

M.

saint," says
activities,

especially

"My

India, unity

is

his

all

truth,

is

non-cooperation

harmony

finds

prayer

cooperation of

in

that India

doctrine.

and division

He

cooperation.

may

represent the

the peoples of the world.

the French writer says,

evil."

For

In summary,

"To my mind Gandhi

universal as Tagore, but in a different way.


is

as a

Rolland, and he deplored his political

Tagore seeks and


wrote,

"Tagore looked upon Gandhi

India.

a universalist through his religious feeling;

is

as

Gandhi

Tagore

RABINDRANATH TAGORE
is

universal.

intellectually

While

171

him,

venerating

(Gandhi) we understand and approve Tagore."

In

Creative Unity, Tagore has included an essay upon

"The Nation"

in

which he stresses "the fight" to-day

between "the living

spirit

of the people"

and the

methods of organizing nations.


If one

were to prophesy which type of Sir Rabin-

dranath Tagore's writings will survive

among many

peoples, the chances are in favor of his mystical prose-

poems and
alive

They

The

his national songs.

latter

have kept

the love of home-country and faith in India.

are sung by

peasants in the

boatmen on

fields,

the

by students and groups at

kinds of festivals and conferences.

two kinds; one

Ganges, by the

These songs are of

a wistful idealization of the

is

all

"Mother-

land," with graphic pictures of scenery, homes, and


religion; the second type

tion," of sacrifice

Gleam,"

to

marched and
every

line

by

It

the "Song of Consecra-

and valor, exampled

which

many young

died.

Bitterness

this poet-patriot;

citation, strong

idealism.

is

is

"Follow the
have

Nationalists

absent from nearly

there

appeal to love of

in

is

spiritual ex-

home and broader

has been said that contradiction

is

evi-

dent between some of these national songs and the


Mahatma Gandhi: The Man Who Became One with the Universal
Being, by Romain Rolland, translated by Catherine D. Groth, New
York, 1924. By permission of the Century Co.
9

THE NOBEL

72

PRIZE WINNERS

broad humanism of many other writings, notably those

Those who know

in the Gitanjali.

man

the

personally,

and who are familiar with the tenets of Hindu philosophy which he embodies, as well as the spiritual

Upanishads, do not

ideals of the

reconcile the

"Ode

creeds, as he has united

them
in

to

in his

Sadhana.

gratifying to note that Rabindranath

is

it

difficult

it

Earth" and some of the essays

to the

While

two

find

Tagore, as prize winner, found incentive to write more


idealistic literature, yet

it is

evident that he never has

surpassed the earlier books of distinctive quality, books


that maintained the classic traditions of his native

gave them new form and

literature but

significance,

The Gardener, The Post Office, King of the Dark


Chamber, Gitanjali, and The Elder Sister. When he
was in the United States he read, at colleges and other
as

many passages from The Gardener and GitanThe two books have similar tone and melody;

places,
jali.

both are
cause

difficult to translate into

much of

the same

is

the mysticism

true of his plays

is

adequate English be-

lost in concrete

when they

words

are staged with-

out sustaining the "illusion" of the Oriental atmosphere.

In native language the rhythm and music sur-

pass and interpret the words; the swaying

accompanies many odes and invocations.

may

be chanted with the music of the

appreciated,

is

one of the mystical

movement

song that

flute,

and thus

lyrics beginning.

RABINDRANATH TAGORE
I

am

My

restless, I

am

athirst for

173

far-away things,

soul goes out in a longing to touch the skirts of the

dim

distance.

Great Beyond,
1 forget, I

the keen call of

ever forget, that

in this spot, evermore.

my

flute!

have no wings, that

am bound

10

Gora, a so-called "novel" by Rabindranath Tagore,


has been issued this current year.

Hindu youth,

of a

Gourmohan Babu.

a Brahmin,

He

It tells the story

whose

is

cherishes a large-souled am-

bition to "unify" India but he cannot break

barriers of his

name

full

religious

down

the

fanaticism enough to con-

sent to the marriage of his younger brother, Binoy

Babu, to a

girl

tic interest

of a lower Ri^hmin caste.

The roman-

from the love

of Gora to

vibrates

The

that of his brother.

not

its

art as fiction,

affairs

chief merit of the

for that

is

book

is

negative, but the

graphic presentation of religious tenets and native customs.

The author

seems, at times, to be seriously

concerned about the development of his hero and the

more

tolerant brother; in other places, he introduces

an element of whimsical humor and kindly irony as


the unexpected sequel of Gora's parentage.

and essays or short

tales,

in

Poetry

rather than fiction of long-

sustained plot, are the forms of writing best adapted


to his gifts.
10 Gitanjali:

1916.

Song-Offerings by Rabindranath Tagore,


of the Macmillan Co.

By permission

New

York,

THE NOBEL

74

As The Gardener
dranath

Tagore,

PRIZE WINNERS

represents the youth of Rabin-

with

normal

spiritual longings, so Gitanjali

mature philosopher-poet,

is

the expression of the

responsive emotionally

still

He

but seeking for "joy eternal."

world

with

fused

desires

literature, the philosophy

has preserved for

and poetry of

earlier

teachers like Chaitanya Deva, usually called "Nimai,"


the

Hindu

Tagore.
tenets

poet,

who

and aspirations

his

joy

in

walked forward
and

a spiritual

Red
in

in poetry,

Nature and

Rabindranath Tagore

is

later plays.

He

but he has

into the vision of a united

brotherhood

in

commonwealth.
in

one

act,

that appeared

one of the most poetic and romantic of his


It is the story

of devotion of Kishor, "a

digger boy," to Nandini of the Palace.

She craves red

oleanders daily and he exults: "This tree


secret

which none

shall

know."

philosophy make interludes

The humanist
his later

has never

solitude

Oleanders, a drama

1925,

of

In addition to these revivals of the earlier

has become an international humanist.


lost

home

lived near Bolpur, the

is

my

one

Songs and mystical

in this pictorial

tragedy.

as well as the poet are expressed in

book, The Religion of

"spiritual reality"

was brought

Man

(1930).

How

to him, at the age of

eighteen, by watching the sun light the trees at dawn,


is

one of the personal incidents

in this

volume.

CHAPTER

XI

ROMAIN HOLLAND AND JEAN-CHRISTOPHE


In 1916 the prize of 1915 has been awarded:

1866: "as homage to the exalted

Rolland, Romain, born

idealism in his authorship, and also to the sympathy and truth

with which he has drawn different types of people."

There was no prize money awarded

The announcement

19 14.

in literature for

that the winner for 19 15

was Romain Rolland, author of Jean-Christophe, was


generally approved.
single

Here was an

instance

when

book had focussed attention of readers and the

judges;

this

masterpiece,

which

had

appeared

in

France at intervals from 1904 to 19 12, had been translated into

was

many languages and much

discussed.

It

a mirror of the conditions of society, especially in

France and Germany at the junction of the nineteenth

and twentieth centuries;


life

was an exhaustive,

vital

story of a musician with aspirations, struggles,

loves,

defeats,

revolts,

triumphant, end.

friendships,

and

tragic,

but

In the biography of Rolland by

Stefan Zweig, emphasis


1

it

is

Inscription with the Nobel Prize

175

laid

Award

upon the period of


in Literature, 191 5.

THE NOBEL

176
nearly

fifty

PRIZE WINNERS

years of the author's


u

and musician,

an

artist

life as a

quiet scholar

working without serious

in-

terruption or serious recognition," and then a sudden,

disturbing publicity which followed in the

wake of

this

novel. 2

Clamecy,

little

town of the Morvan on the

Nivernais canal, was the birthplace of Romain Rolland,

January 29,

1866.

His father was

mother was daughter of


and

religious,

a magistrate; she

pages of the section, "Antoinette,"

When

notary;

life

in

is

his

was musical

devoted to her son and the younger

Their happy home

Madelaine.

child,

reflected

in

Jean-Christophe.

he was young, Romain Rolland showed taste for

music and his mother taught him and told him stories

When

about great musicians.


at the

Communal College

with rare

self-sacrifice,

Clamecy and went to

his school

in his native

gave up

Paris,

his

days ended

town, his father,

law practice

becoming clerk

in a

in

bank

that the boy might be educated in the best schools.

After attendance at the Lycee Louis-le-Grand

was twenty, he entered


where he specialized

the Ecole

in history.

a teacher of surpassing influence

characters of his students.

until he

Normale Superieure
Gabriel

Monod was

over the minds and

Rolland was enthusiastic

Romain Rolland: the Man and His Work by Stefan Zweig, transEden and Cedar Paul, New York, 1921. By permission of

lated by

Thomas

Seltzer.

By

courtesy of

Henry Holt

&

Co.

ROMAIN ROLLAND

ROMAIN ROLLAND

177

about Tolstoy, both as reformer and writer. 8

For

Shakespeare he had ardent admiration, especially for


the historical plays and sonnets.

Another friend of these

was Paul

tentative years

Claudel, the author of books with mystical tendencies

upon the history of Catholicism.

had expressed

Already Rolland

a fugitive, recurrent wish to write a

romance, "the history of a single-hearted

artist

Such was

bruises himself against the rocks of life."

the

norm

of Jean-Christophe.

not wholly pleased,

He was

when he was

a traveling scholarship

who
and

surprised,

told that he

had won

from the Normal School and

could go to the French School of Archeology and

History at Rome.
city,

of

For two years he stayed

making contacts with some of the


his

life,

notably

the

senior but

alert

still

and

vital influences

with

friendship

Malwida von Meysenburg;

she

testify.

in

her

book,

inspiring.

She knew

In his essay,

his musical gifts

To

the

inti'

as

ideatiste,

in this

young

and visionary hopes.

Undying Antigone," Rolland

speaks of his gratitude to two


Fraulein von Meysenburg.
8

hi?

artists,

Memoires d'une

She took a profound interest

Frenchman with

Fraulein

was many years

mately scores of statesmen, writers, and


references

in this

women
With

his

mother and

the latter he went

See his Tolstoy, translated by Bernard Miall, London and


York, 191 1.

New

178

THE NOBEL

to visit

Wagner

at

PRIZE WINNERS

Bayreuth and increased

One

enthusiasm and knowledge.

his musical

day, as he

was walk-

ing on the Janiculum, the germ-idea and plan of his


epic novel,
its

J ean-Christophe

writing was delayed for

Back

in

formed

many

mind but

Normal

School, and

determined to attack indifference

His

to the fine arts.

his

years.

Paris as lecturer at the

at the Sorbonne, he

in

thesis

had

a title of arresting

words for that time, "The Original of the Modern


Lyrical

Drama."

While

in

few plays that were not made

and Niobe.

He

was eager

Rome

he had written a

public, Orsino, Caligula,

to increase interest in music

Normal School and elsewhere. He attended


musical festivals at Bonn and Strasburg and began
at the

that series of biographies published later as Musicians

of

Former Days, Musicians of Today, Beethoven,

Handel, and other volumes.


ter of

Michael Breal, the

met noted men of

He

married the daugh-

philologist, at

letters, science,

and

was cultured and sympathetic with


extend knowledge of music and art

He

whose home he
art.

His wife

his aspirations to

among

the people.

rebelled against educational restrictions, as well as

political reactions; in such

moods he wrote

plays such

Danton, Fourteenth of July, Triumph of Reason,


and Saint Louis, a heroic legend. He urged popularizas

ing of the theatre and lamented the dominance of


aristocratic theatre."

Some of

the

the articles which he

ROMAIN ROLLAND
wrote at different times on
lated by Barrett

(New York,
beneficial

He

1918).

theme have been trans-

this

H. Clark

The People's Theatre

as

looked to the theatre as

to the people in three

source of joy; (2)

179

"(1)

ways:

as a source of energy;

as a

as a

(3)

source of guiding light to the intelligence."

Before

Rolland

literature, the

In almost

had

really

"found

Dreyfus case racked

all his

himself"

in

his sensitive soul.

later writings there are references,

direct or implied, to this "welter of feeling" which di-

At

vided families and shattered friendships.


of the

trial

he wrote,

out trying to combat


entirely

man."

"He who

the time

can see injustice with-

it, is

neither entirely an artist nor

He

wrote a dramatic parable,

Les Loups {Wolves) under the pseudonym of "Saint


Just,"

in

which he

lifted

from the

"the problem

As

realm of time into that of the eternal."


political strife

became more personal and

bitter,

the

Rol-

land retired from public attention and devoted himself


to writing lives of artists like
let

and musicians.

He

Michael Angelo and Mil-

contributed the

first

chapters

of Jean-Christophe to the literary magazine, Cahiers

de

la

years.

Quinzaine,

known

to students only

In two small rooms on the

fifth

for

many

floor of a

Parisian house, above the boulevard Montparnasse,


4

Century Magazine, August, 1913,

V. Sanborn.

article

on Rolland by Alvan

THE NOBEL

180

PRIZE WINNERS

Rolland wrote and read, seeing a few friends, taking


walks, and playing the piano for recreation.

Out-

wardly, he was serene; inwardly, he was seething with


indignation at the falsities and hypocrisy of

shown for

disdain

of asphyxia in

pressed

it

in

its

spiritual values, at "the

life, at

the

world dying

prudent and vile egoism," as he ex-

Jean-Christophe.

Slowly, without any aids of publicity, the real value

of Jean-Christophe became apparent to

critics

and

dis-

criminating readers, as the last volumes appeared in


the magazine.
its

German

journalists called attention to

Paul Seippel, the Swiss writer,

unique merits.

re-

work of Rolland. In June,


Rolland was given the Grand Prix of the

lated the life and earlier


1

9 13,

French

Academy.

Translation

was made

into English

awakened.

The same

of the plays written

Les tragedies de

Jean-Christophe

of

by Gilbert Cannan and

critics

year Rolland republished some

in his student days,

la foi;

under

title,

by examples of such heroes as

"Saint Louis" and "Aert," he would inspire the people

of the twentieth century to a

Wolves, has been staged

in

new

idealism.

Yiddish

in

New

His

play,

York, has

been translated into English by Barrett H. Clark, and


has been performed at the University of Minnesota.
In his epic story of a musician and his associates,

Rolland was a preacher of aspiration and harmony to


the whole world,

in

spite

of localized atmosphere

ROMAIN ROLLAND
He

words of Goethe, "National

recalled the

now means very


at

181

little;

literature

the epoch of world literature

is

"Let us make Goethe's

hand"; and he urged,


5

prophecy a living reality."

His hero was

to

have

a long, circuitous journey in his search for expression

of his aspirations; he was to meet

many

kinds of people

and races he was to have some of the tragic experiences


;

of musicians of real

Hugo Wolf;

Beethoven, Wagner, and

life,

he was to keep aloft the banner of ideal-

Like the author, he was to

ism, of faith in humanity.

be victimized by the hard realities of

The book was

sionments.

to

life

and

have many themes and

varied notes but was to be blended, at the


a perfect
1

The

symphony.

895-1 897; the

last

last,

into

preludes were written in

chords were played

Parts were written

19 1 2.

disillu-

in

in

October,

France and Italy; others,

Switzerland and England.

in

No work
taling

of fiction of such prodigious length, to-

more than 1550 pages,

edition translated by Gilbert

many

without

Some of
memory,

many

like

Olivier,

passages of uneven merit.

Grazia,

and haunting
Antoinette,

Emmanuel, Dr. Braun,

Rom a in

the three-volume

Cannan, could be written

the characters are vital

Jacqueline,

lapses,

in

to the

Sabine,

besides the hero;

lated by

Rolland: the Man and His Work by Stefan Zweig, transEden and Cedar Paul, New York, 1915. By permission of

Thomas

Seltzer.

THE NOBEL

8i

others

flit

PRIZE WINNERS
Con-

across the pages and are forgotten.

densation of some chapters would add to their

effec-

tiveness but the author's discursive, intuitive

comments

may

be reread

make
in

a valuable asset of the book.

It

parts with enjoyment, just as a musical program, for

an evening, has selected movements

When

phony.

it

was suggested

in a

fugue or a sym-

to Rolland that he

seemed to show enmity towards Germany, by some of


the reproaches of her false standards, his reply was,

"I

am

not in the least an enemy of

Germany"

proof,

in

many faults in
Germany in Volume

he cited that he had rated soundly as


France, in

He

IV.

Volume V,

had

as he

in

contended that Germany had creative energy

and moral vigor but that she was "sick"


tieth century, just as

to be

whole,

found

fail to interpret

each other aright.

understanding can be established

of Jean-Chris to phe

Heroic

Unless such

in friendship,

war

will

such was the prophetic message

which

was

His book was intended

later.

qualities.

both countries but the people, as a

in

sunder the nations

twen-

France was diseased and needed

purged to restore her noble

souls are

in this

fulfilled

as a

two years

"common

heritage

for all" of Europe.

Time
its

will fix the exact status of this epic novel

and

upon international thought.

It

lasting influence

may

be classified as allegory, romance, psychological

study, or idealistic vision;

it

has sincerity, inspiration,

ROMAIN ROLLAND
and imaginative

The

intensity.

183

author's

statement

that he always thought of the

life

alogous to a river,

he sustains the imagery

is

significant;

of his hero as an-

Dawn, Morning, Youth, and Revolt

from the

first

Germany

to the very

border," to the

final

in

end of the journey "across the

where "Saint Christopher"

act

hears the roar of the torrent but also, the "tranquil


voice of the Child" as the Angelus sounds forth

New
of

Day.

life,

Gilbert

Cannan has compared

is

more

is

the phases

explored by Jean-Christophe, to the tortuous

His judgment that

channel of an uncharted river.


novel

The

"the

first

this

great book of the twentieth century,"

stable than the prophecy of other critics that

many passages of artistic perfection, like "Antoinette," "The


House," and "The New Dawn." With emotional

would leave out the word

It

"first."

has

fervor the author, in the closing volume, speaks his

message to the future, apostrophizing the young men

"You men
your

feet,

of today, march over us, trample us under

and press onward.

happier than we.

and resurrections.
born again."

And
6

since

Life

We

is

must

Be ye greater and
a succession of deaths

die,

Christophe, to be

the award,

what has Romain Rolland

Jean-Christophe by Romain Rolland, translated by Gilbert CanNew York and London, 1913. By permission of

nan, Vol. Ill, p. 348,


Henry Holt & Co.

THE NOBEL

i8 4

Colas Breugnon, the tale of a Burgundian

written?
artist,

translated in 19 19 by Katherine Miller,

intense,

much more

novel.

It

during the

free

and diverting than

less

is

his long

work of relaxation for the author


summer months in Switzerland, 19 13. He
was

had recently

town and modeled the

visited his birth

hero, in part,

"an

PRIZE WINNERS

from a

artist of the

resident, a

vanished type."

and defeats but he never loses

wood

carver there,

He

has his struggles

his

optimism.

The

war began, with its devastating, soulsearing effects upon Romain Rolland.
He had seen
its black shadow and had forewarned the people in

next year the

Jean-Chris top he but the actual conflict overwhelmed

Like Olivier,

his spirit.

sembles in

many ways),

boyhood;

it

story

in his

re-

he had feared such a war from

had been "a nightmare

He

poisoned his childhood days."

Lake Geneva, when

(whom he

the

to him;

was

at

it

had

Vevey, on

war broke out and he decided

to stay there; he longed for France but he could not


fight

He

without blighting his soul.

would

suffer as

a pacifist, loving his country, rather than yield to hate.

He

did secretarial

work

welfare measures of

in

prize

for the

many

money came, he gave

the miseries of Europe."


7

Romain Rolland:

York,

1 92 1,

p. 270.

the

Man

Red Cross and

kinds.
it

When

assisted

the Nobel

"to the mitigation of

He

wrote some of the

and His Work by Stefan Zweig,

New

ROMAIN ROLLAND
papers that were collected

in

Above

185

the Battle; his

Hauptmann, appealing

friendly letter to

the German's reply, are given here.

for amity, and

In spite of the

aggressive tone of the German's note, Rolland refused


to believe that the ideals of

human brotherhood had

been destroyed; they were suffering eclipse temporarily


but would relive

in

"The New Dawn."

To Woodrow

Wilson, in the later months of the war, Rolland

made

an appeal to "be the arbiter of the free peoples."

On

the

day of the

L'Humanite, a

armistice

call to

he

issued

manifesto,

"brain workers," comrades

all

through the world, to reconstruct a fraternal union.

The

play,

The Montespan,

Brugh de Kay,

He had
thought,

is

translated by Helena van

called a "sequel to

Above

the Battle/'

written, during these days of seclusion


his

Gandhi: the

study

and

of

appreciation

Man Who Became One with

and

Mahatma

the Universal

Being (translated by Catherine D. Groth), which has


been quoted

in the

previous chapter upon Rabindranath

Tagore.

As

relaxation, he wrote Liluli, a

"goddess of illusion" as

its

heroine.

comedy with the


There are some

lines of satire

and some of burlesque,

ants wrestle.

It

war

as the combat-

was symbolic of France during the

years, as he viewed his country, scorning

and heaping up ruins of past greatness.


illustrated with thirty-two

wood

Truth

This has been

engravings by Frans

THE NOBEL

86

Masereel

(New

PRIZE WINNERS
While Rolland was

York, 1920).

exercising his ironical wit

upon

this picture

of war, he

was writing Clerambault: the Story of an Independent

War,

Spirit during the

a sad portrayal of a pacifist.

This has been translated by Katherine Miller


York, 1921).

It is a dissertation

a presentation of the author's

much philosophy about


Clerambault,
periences.

passes

The

life

own

and

through

more than

(New

a story,

sentiments, with

The man,

conflicts.

strange

ex-

spiritual

early scenes of his rural

home

life,

peaceful and happy, are contrasted with his fanaticism

when he reaches

Paris and urges his son,

enter the army; then

come

of conscience.

author interprets the tale as a tragedy for the


his

wife,

but

to

reactions, after the death

own probings

of the son and his

Maxime,

triumph of freedom for

There are many autobiographical touches

The

man and
his

soul.

in this psy-

chological story.

In 1922 there appeared in Paris,

Rolland, the
is

first

now appearing

from

the pen of

volumes of L'dme enchantee which


in

English version, by Ben Ray Red-

man, as Annette and Sylvie:

The Prelude and

second volume, Summer, translated by Eleanor Stimson

and Van
tells his

Wyck

Brooks.

In his

Foreword the author

readers that they are starting with him upon

new journey which

will not be so

long as that of

Jean-Christophe but will include more than one stage.

ROMAIN ROLLAND
He

asks suspension of judgment until the tale

ished, quoting the old adage,

He

soir le jour."

No

is

another

thesis

girls,

Annette

drawing.

is

some

is

in this story

many

antitheses in character-

a girl of fine health

and brain,

She had adored her father

letters

which she found after

derstands his secretive smiles.

who

but

kinds of bufferings

death, she realizes his infidelities to her

sister

so

half sisters, Annette and Sylvie,

educated at the Sorbonne.


but, because of

struggling to find Truth, to

him scope for sharp

afford

le

the secretary of their

nor theory

life history,

Two

joys.

loue la vie, et

Jean, Colas, Annette

reach harmony of spirit amid

and

fin

him

more "than

that he becomes no

thoughts."

"La

fin-

is

expresses the domination that his

characters gain over

it

187

never bore his name

his

mother and un-

She locates her half

cated, capricious, gay, unmoral.

Sylvie, pretty, unedu-

The deep

passions of

Annette, her reserves and independence, her repug-

nance to any "possessiveness" on the part of her lover,

Roger

Brissot,

This

realism.

own

and
is

his family, lead to a scene of erotic

followed by words of the author's

creed, his Search for

those

who

seeking.

Truth

"I

am

fear the fatigues of the road..

...

am

convinced that

it

is

not one of

...

am

possible to

love one's child, loyally perform one's domestic task,

and

still

keep enough of oneself, as one ought to

for

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

188

the most essential thing

one's soul."

ond volume reveals the material and

The

sec-

spiritual conflicts

of Annette, as a mother and teacher, and Sylvie's experiences in marriage and business.

In his later books, as in his earlier plays and

M.

fiction,

Rolland has revealed that idealism which,

philosophy,
aspiration

means harmony and freedom of both

and

art.

battles that

ment and

His form

action.

sometimes crude but

and true

in his

have

own

left scars

fine soul.

often careless and

has high lights of great beauty

it

In his

is

He

life

upon

he has waged
his sensitive

has written ardently

many

temperain

behalf

of international friendship and intellectual unity.

M.
whom

In a comprehensive, illustrated volume,

has

discussed

two of the "giants"

Rolland
he

has

studied and revealed in other pages, Goethe and Bee-

thoven, 9

Five essays are in the volume, two compari-

sons of the masters in music and literature, one on

"Goethe's Silence," one on "Goethe, the Musician,"

and the

last,

summarizing the relations of Bettina von

Arnim-Brentano, with each of these men.

It

is

an

illuminating story of the break between Goethe and

Beethoven, their mutual regard and distinctive genius.


8 Annette and Sylvie: Being Volume One
of the Soul Enchanted
by Romain Rolland, translated from the French by Ben Ray Redman,
New York, 1925. By permission of Henry Holt & Co.
9 Translated from the French by G. A. Pfister and E. S. Kemp, New
York and London, 193 1.

CHAPTER

XII

A GROUP OF WINNERS NOVELISTS AND


POETS
Heidenstam of Sweden (191 6)
pontoppidan and gjellerup of

Denmark

1917)

Carl Spitteler of Switzerland (19 19)


The

prize of 191 6 has been awarded:

Heidenstam, Verner von, born 1859: "in recognition of his


*
significance as spokesman of a new epoch in our literature."

"Sweden's Laureate"

is

the

name often given

Verner von Heidenstam who won the prize

By

public, competitive vote of his

in

to

19 16.

countrymen he had

been chosen as the most popular poet before he was

He

accorded this world honor.

less

is

familiar,

translation in English, than his compatriot

ceded him

in

recognition by the Swedish

Selma Lagerlof.
gaining

new

His

plays,

novels,

pre-

Academy,

and poems are

appreciation through the translations in

recent years by Charles

Wharton

M.

Knudsen.

Chater, and Karoline


1

who

by

Inscription with the Nobel Prize

189

Award

Stork,

Arthur G.

He was

born of

in Literature, 1916.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

190

aristocratic family at the


in

Narke, July

6,

1859.

manor house of Olshammar


As a boy he was never strong;

he was shy and loved to read, especially poetry and

hero

When

stories.

was

he

in

adolescence,

early

he developed such a condition that lung-disease was

feared and he was sent to the south of Europe for a

For eight years he was away from

milder climate.

Sweden, spending time

Some

Turkey, and Egypt.

Switzerland, Greece,

in Italy,

of his ancestors had been in

he was lured by

governmental positions

in the

the picturesqueness and

freedom of these lands.

His

was

first

Orient

ambition was to be a painter; for a time he

a student of

Gerome

in Paris.

Critics

recognized this quality of the painter's

poems,

in selection

duction of

he

fell in

skill

in

his

of objects and colors and in reprocarnival days, and at

life in Paris, in Italian

While Heidenstam was

Damascus.

have often

still

young man,

love with a Swiss girl of the people and mar-

At an old castle of Brunegg, estranged for


time from his parents, he lived in seclusion, seeing

ried her.

few people except

his wife

and August Strindberg who

had become deeply interested

in

the

young poet.

ready he had decided that literature, not


his profession.

ered later

Thoughts
his

as
in

He

art,

Al-

must be

wrote many poems that were gath-

Pilgrimages

Loneliness one

moods of longing

and Wander-Years.

may

In

read expressions of

for home, mingled with resent-

HEIDENSTAM OF SWEDEN
ment against

"Childhood Scenes"

injustice.

191
is

an ex-

ample, beginning:
I've longed for
I

home

these eight long years,

know.

long in sleep as well as through the day!


I

I seek

long for home!


where'er

Where

The

stones

I go,

not men-folk, but the fields

I would stray,
where as a child

There are sundry references


will arouse

used to play. 2

to his

mother; a

line that

sympathy reads,

She prayed

In the poem,

You

my

life

might have a worthy goal !

"Fame," he

melancholy and laments:

is

seek for fame but

would choose another

*n<\ greater blessing:

So to be forgotten

That none should hear my name;


No, not my mother. 4

The death

of his father,

in

1887, called him back to

Sweden; here, with intervals of


residence through his mature

travel, has

life.

been his

volume of

his

Poems, following those of Pilgrimages and WanderYears, increased his reputation

his

countrymen.

Sweden's Laureate: Selected Poems translated by Charles WharNew Haven, 1919. By permission of Yale University Press.
Ibid., "Mother."
permission of Yale University Press.

ton Stork,
3

among

By

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

92

They were of diverse types some were emotional like


"A Man's Last Word to a Woman" others were
u
scenic and dramatic narratives, like
The Forest of
u
Tiveden" and The Burial of Gustaf Froding." The
;

songs adapts them to community

lyrical quality in his

"Sweden"

singing; his

is

compared by Mr. Stork


1

The

9 14."

is

most familiar and has been

to

John Masefield's "August,

vibrant quality

is

strong; the patriotism

appealing:

Oh, Sweden, Sweden, Sweden,

Land!

native

Our earthly home, the haven of our longing!


The cow-bells ring where heroes used to stand,
Whose deeds are song, but still with hand in hand

To

swear the eternal troth thy sons are thronging!

In later poems, as well as prose essays, Heidenstam has

shown ardent

liberalism

and a

spirit

of brotherhood.

"Singers in the Steeple" emphasizes


joy to the rich, to the poor

Our

toil

Poems,

and our pleasure

published

democracy

and

in

1902,

universal

"Fellow-Citizens," and other


sor,

men care;
we share.

Not

Bjornson, he

idealism.

is

contain

suffrage,
lines.

in

appeals
the

elegy of Bjornson as

for

verses,

Like his predeces-

both national and universal

With honor and

closing lines

alike

in his

love he has written the

"Norway's Father," with the

HEIDENSTAM OF SWEDEN
Yet the

soul of the people deep within

breathes the eternal brother-song,

Still

We

193

stand and gaze at the sunset long

And

grieve for thee as one of our kin. 5

Verner von Heidenstam must be included on the


lists

of novelists as well as poets.

lished his

first

In 1889 he pub-

romance, Endymion,

With

of an old theme.

a painter's

new treatment

glow of fancy he

sought to depict, through a love story of moderate


terest, the

atmosphere of the East, when

by restraints of Western

civilization.

it is

He

in-

clouded

had

regis-

tered rebellion against the growth of naturalism in

fic-

Wedding (1890) he urged idealism,


inner truth.
The term, "imaginative

tion: in Pepita's

and search for


realist,"

which has been used to classify Heidenstam,

especially applicable to the fantastic, emotional tale,

is

Hans Alienus (1892). As writer of fiction, however,


the name of Heidenstam will always be linked most

The Charles Men (Karolinern) stories


a series of prose-poems
of Charles XII and his wars

closely with

depicting Swedish heroism, written with fervor and


artistic

finish.

translation

by Charles Wharton

Stork, with introduction by Fredrik Book, has been

added

to

the

Scandinavian

Scandinavian Foundation,
5

Sweden's

Wharton
Press.

Laureate:

Stork,

New

Classics

New York,

Selected

Haven, 1919.

Poems,

By

(American-

1920).

Among

translated
by Charles
permission of Yale University

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

94

Mons,"

the best of several dramatic tales are "French

"The

Fortified

land,

Heidenstam

House," and "Captured."

a pacifist yet he has written a

is

vigorous tribute to this "King

who

in

was

a genius in

war

whole

lived his

the field and died in a trench," the

life

Like Rol-

but, like his heroic

man who

men, gentle as

well as brave, with lofty visions.

Other romances followed


Charles

Men

The

major work,

and folklore, sagas and modern

tales

applications in Saint

George and the Dragon, Saint

Birgitta's Pilgrimage,
tion

this

and Forest Murmurs.

In

fic-

and essays the writer has attacked naturalism that

"lets the cellar air escape

Some

through the house."

of his significant essays are collected as Classicism and

Teutonism.

It is

unfortunate that so few of his works

are adequately rendered into English.


tributed to liberal

He

and reform journals.

has conIn

1900,

marrying for a third time, he bought a home near


Vadstena, the place of his childhood, and with his
wife, a

woman

of broad culture and social charm, he

has exerted a wide influence upon Swedish


191 2 he was elected a

emy which honored

member

itself, as

life.

In

of the Swedish Acad-

well as him, by the

award

of the Nobel prize four years later, after his candidacy

had been urged throughout Scandinavia and

else-

where.

Among

his

verses

had been delightful

"Cradle

HEIDENSTAM OF SWEDEN
Songs"; he had written,

juvenile

also,

was asked by the Swedish educational


write a

Reader for school

Without the

of love."

He

use.

originality

195

He

stories.

authorities to

"a work

calls this

and glamour of Miss

Lagerldf s books, The Wonderful Adventures of Nils


and its sequel, this Reader contains some absorbing
tales of heroism,

merit.

and poems and scenes of descriptive

For older youths and adults he has embodied

poetic legends with

modern teachings

two

in

plays,

M. Knudsen, The
God (Boston, 19 19,

translated into English by Karoline

Soothsayer and The Birth of


1920).

The

first

play

is

located upon

"An Arcadian

Plain" with Apollo, the Soothsayer, the Fates, and

Erigone, wife of the Soothsayer, as leading characters.

There are sentences of


love,"

subtle

humor about

man

in

and more serious counsel of Apollo, with

modern meaning:
Son of dust

Thou

didst try to serve

thy

two gods

is

words of Dyskolus, an An-

modern merchant,

Stranger, comparing

the altar-fire and the sacred hymn,"

destiny

power became

founded upon Egyptian mythol-

ogy, with symbolism in the

therefore, thy

doom!

The Birth of God


cient, to a

when

"divine

had not been forgotten," with humanity of

pure standards.

less


THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

196

The Tree of
ish

into English

1925),

is

from the Swed-

the Folkungs f translated

by Arthur G. Chater

(New York,

romance, mingling history, sagas, fantasy,

pageantry, action, and modern interpretation of some

of the deeds and ideals of the Vikings.

compared

to

Two

Peer Gynt.

has been

It

distinctive parts of the

book, welded into one story, are "Folke Filbyter" and

"The

Bellbo

that gives

title

ficing to all

The

Heritage."
to the

gods

first

part

in adversity

elemental character
is

and pulling down

He

tars in days of prosperity.

Earl Birger,

sacriall al-

opposes the dynasty

of the Folkungs but he ends his days in squalor and


piteous craving for the love denied

and grandsons,
material

a lesson to

miserliness.

him by

moderns of the

The second

his sons

of

futility

section

of

the

strange, impressive tale deals with the fortunes of the

Folkungs two hundred years later and the

conflict be-

tween two brothers and their differing standards, King

Valdemar and Junker Magnus.

The

latter considers

his older brother a "good-hearted, sunny-eyed fool,"

compared with

his

own masterful ways.

This legend-

ary romance-pageant has scenes of dramatic


the battle between

Valdemar and Magnus, the love of

the minstrel for an outcast maiden,

of historical and imaginative past.


well constructed

power

revelation

and many customs


It is

an elaborate,

of Heidenstam's imagi-

native insight and vigor, united with his skill in inter-

"

HENRIK PONTOPPIDAN

197

preting the past, in history and sagas, to the prob-

He

lems of the present hour.


of a

new epoch

is,

"the herald

in truth,

our literature.

in

Henrik Pontoppidan
The

awarded one half

prize of 191 7 has been

to:

Pontoppidan, Henrik, born 1857: "for his profuse descriptions of

Danish

life

of today."

The Swedish Academy had sprung


awards of the

the

in

passed

all

first

several surprises

fifteen years but they sur-

previous records,

in

19 17,

when

the

honor

was divided between Henrik Pontoppidan and Karl


Gjellerup of

were

less

Denmark.

known by

Danish writers,

in general,

translation in France, Italy, Eng-

and America than their neighbors of Sweden

land,

Norway.

and

Outstanding

Christian Andersen and

exceptions

Georg Brandes.

Royal Theatre was recognized

in

Hans

are

The Danish

contemporary

life as

an educational force; such playwrights of earlier and


later days as Holberg, Oehlenschlager,

and Edward

Brandes had been studied by dramatic scholars

many
rett

Bergstrdm's play, Karen Borneman,

countries.

translated by

Edwin Bjorkman,

H. Clark

in

is

discussed by Bar-

Study of the

Modern Drama. 1

Inscription with the Nobel Prize

New

York, 1925,

in

p.

27.

Award

in Literature, 1917.


THE NOBEL

198

Another

by

play

PRIZE WINNERS
Thora

Bergstrom,

Deken

van

(191 5) was a dramatization of a novel by Pontoppidan.

An

interesting note, regarding the reaction to this

award of 19 17,

joint

found

is

The

Scandinavian Review.*

ages of the recipients

the

American-

comment

first

both

the

in

is

were past

upon

sixty

"another veteran medal" for writers whose productivity

is

In addition, says the editorial writer,

past.

"Neither has mastering genius that would

Pontoppidan

to the prize."

stands

is

the better

for progress that will not

entitle

him

known; he

forget tradition.

Vilhelm Anderson, literary historian, has said of Pon-

"Modern Denmark could be refrom his books." The family had

toppidan's writings,

constructed entire
scholars,

among them

seventeenth

the

a bishop, Eric

century,

Danish grammar

in

who

published the

moved

at Frederica in Jut-

His grandfather and father had been

While he was

clergymen.

oldest

Latin.

Henrik Pontoppidan was born


land, in 1857.

Pontoppidan, of

to Randers

schoolboy the family

where he remained

until

he went

to Copenhagen, to the Polytechnic Institute, to study

He made

engineering.

he had his
In
8

88

first

1, in

a visit to Switzerland

love affair and wrote his early sketches.

Denmark, appeared Clipped Wings,

Vol. VI, p. 109.

where

a col-

HENRIK PONTOPPIDAN

199

which "The Church Ship" excels

lection of stories of

imagination and dramatic concentration, the mysti-

in

cal

mingling with the

a time at

Ostby but

few years

moved

marriage, he

In 1891 he lived for

realistic.

later, after his

second

Copenhagen where he has been

to

a noted leader in educational

and

literary life, a friend

of Brandes and an adviser of the younger dramatists

and

novelists.

He

Ibsen; an echo of

has been called an imitator of

some of the melancholic

Brand and Ghosts may be seen


but he
is

is

distinctive in his

criticized

in

of

effects

Pontoppidan's tales

He

methods of portrayal.

sometimes as narrow and localized, with-

out spiritual vision.

and characters
first

(1892-1916) presents scenes

trilogy of novels

rural life of

in the

book, The Promised Land,

depressing, strongly

Emanuel, called by some

realistic in its hero,

"a prose Brand. "

is

It

is

The

Denmark.

critics

a tale of disillusionment, a

revelation of the struggle of idealists in this world

of material ambitions.
years was devoted to

marked.

The second

It is written
it

and

novel,

author devoted four years,


hero, like his author,

studied as an engineer.
written during the

war

with care

three

the note of sincerity

Lucky Peter,
is

to which the

partly subjective.

was son of

is

The

a clergyman and

The Kingdom of

the

Dead,

years, reflects such influences

with a stronger tone of patriotism than

is

dominant

in

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

200

the author's other tales;


it

it

is

loosely constructed but

gives clear glimpses of Copenhagen, both in city

and

streets

outlying

The

districts.

Apothecary's

Daughter has been translated by G. Nielsen (London,


1890).
In an English edition of Pontoppidan's stories, The

Promised Land and Emanuel, or Children of the


translated by Mrs.
tions

Edgar Lucas, with

Soil }

several illustra-

by Nelly Erichsen (London, 1896), the

illustra-

tor explains the author's purpose in the chapters of

The Evolution of

the

Danish Peasant.

He

has chosen

a disturbing period in educational and religious


after the Danish peasant
slave to a citizen,
ties,

by the

was transformed from

act of 1849.

the Peas-

were formed and high schools were established.

Then, by a revision of 1866, the


ants were again threatened

minds.

Political par-

"The National-Liberal" and "Friends of

ants,"

life

liberties of the peas-

and despair

settled

on their

In two remote villages, Veilby and Skibberup,

prototypes of the places where the author had lived

and taught for a time and knew the people, he has


portrayed their customs and revolts

in a vivid, descrip-

tive style.

In some of his short stories, like "Eagle's Flight"

and "Mimosas," Pontoppidan reveals himself


best as narrator.

He

is

deeply interested

tional progress for his people

at his

in educa-

he urges freedom from

KARL GJELLERUP
and weak compromises.

hypocrisy

201
Idealist

in

aspirations and photographer of Danish life in

and country, he

is

his

town

an author whose writings will be

appreciated as the years add to their interpretations

and

translations.

Karl Gjellerup
The

prize of 191 7 has been awarded, one half to:

Gjellerup, Karl, born 1857, died October 13, 1919: "for his

many-sided, rich, and inspired writing with high ideals."

Like Pontoppidan, Karl Adolf Gjellerup was the

He

son of a clergyman.

To

at

Roholte

in

1857.

please his father he studied for the ministry, and

took examinations
to

was born

my

accept

in theology,

win,

He was

parish.

"modernist doctrines

but he was not willing

1
'

deeply interested in

and became

Georg Brandes, and Spencer.

a disciple of

Later he recanted

from some of these teachings and became


and more

historical in his studies.

Eddas and had


he became
of his

He

less radical

delighted in the

a natural flair for literature even before

a professional writer.

life in

Dar-

He

has lived much

Dresden, where his popularity seems to

be greater than in his

mentator on Gjellerup,

home

country.

in the

Said the com-

American-Scandinavian

Review, 10 after the prize was divided between him and


9

Inscription with the Nobel Prize


VI, 1918.

10 Vol.

Award

in Literature, 1917.

THE NOBEL

202

Pontoppidan

is

in

Scandinavia."

a writer, Gjellerup has traveled far afield for

He

his subjects.

he

19 17, "his appointment has been re-

marked coolness

ceived with

As

in

PRIZE WINNERS

has written books on art and music;

many

an ardent Wagnerian and has studied

He

aspects of this influence, as his writings testify.

has tried his hand at plays

modern

spirit

Greek love of beauty.

It is

reconcile the

there

much

lated, in

in

which he sought to

of Christianity with the


not a

new theme

He

distinction in his treatment.

modern Danish language,

Eddas and old Norse


English he

known

is

especially

is

has trans-

several tales of the

By

sagas.

nor

translation

by two

stories,

into

The

Pilgrim Kamanita and Minna; other novels, typical


of his style are
satirical

An

Idealist

and photographic passages.

The Pilgrim Kamanita,


(London and

New York,

ary Romance.

It is laid

when Lord Buddha


there

is

19 12),

is

John E. Logie

subtitled

Legend-

on the banks of the Gunga,

visits the

Byron's

in the

"City of Five Hills";

quality.

Don Juan

"This

an

The opening

colorful passages,

The

grove of Krishna.

meant for narration"


tive

translated by

graphic description of locusts and coral trees

and blossoms

from

and Pastor Mons, with

narrative

indication of

pages are

its

text

is

not

is

imagina-

brilliant

with

"billowy clouds of purest gold,"

blossoming gardens and terraces and "a long

line

of

KARL GJELLERUP
rocky eminences, rivaling

and the

in

colour the topaz, amethyst,

were resolved into an enamel of

opal,

comparable beauty

at

among

the

in-

City of the Five Hills."

this

Kamanita was the son of


Avanti,

203

merchant

He

mountains.

in the

was

land of

rich,

well

educated, could sing and draw, could color crystals

and

whence any jewel came."

"tell

an embassy of business

sent on

At twenty he was
to King Udena in

Here began his "Pilgrimage" in love and


memories that form the trail of this story. MystiKosambi.

cism,

and esoteric philosophy are mixed, rather than

blended, with realism.

Minna, the novel translated


Nielsen

ground.

into English

(London, 19 13), has Dresden for

by C. L.
its

There are songs from Wagner and music

by Chopin and Beethoven, interspersed with the


of

back-

Minna and her

convenance.

tragic

life,

tale

after her mariage de

In a note, dated Dresden, August, 19 12,

the author confesses, "I have often felt a homesick


feeling for the

been reading

Danish sund"

Thomas Moore's

He

adds that he has

Irish

Melodies, be-

queathed to him by his deceased friend, Harald Fenger.

This love story,

in

to Gjellerup before

had

lost

chest.
this

manuscript form, was entrusted

Fenger died

in

London, after he

"Minna" and developed a fatal illness of the


With these memories before him, he narrates

romance of the hero who comes

into the country,

THE NOBEL

2o 4

PRIZE WINNERS

near the Elbe and, crossing the ferry, meets a pretty


governess and Lisbeth, whose chief distinction was
that of wearing a

fashion."

through

The

letters

veil,

when

at a time

Minna

character of

veils are out

of

revealed largely

is

There are

with emotional tones.

dis-

illusionments as well as emotional joys in this tale,


u
To
justifying the motto chosen from Moore's line,
live

with them

far less sweet than to

is

remember

them."

The Nobel honor


in

Germany because

had been strong,

to Gjellerup
his influence

was appreciated much

upon

especially in

art

and literature

Dresden.

He

preted, to Danish readers, certain factors in


life

and philosophy.

While

inter-

German

Danish compatriots

his

recognize his scholarly work, his literary insight, and


subtle wit,

they do not rank him as a genius nor

essentially as a

Danish writer.

Some

leaders in that

country would have much preferred to be represented,

among Nobel
honored writer

prize winners, by a versatile, worldlike

Georg Brandes, or

like

Bergstrom (before

his

death

like

Drachmann (before

his

death

in
in

19 14) or a poet

1908) or

of localized scenes but broad vision like

There are elements of poetic


in

insight

a playwright

J.

a writer

V. Jensen.

and analytical

the romances by Gjellerup; and translation into

lish will increase

skill

Eng-

appreciation of his literary influence.


CARL SPITTELER

205

Carl Spitteler
The

prize of 19 19 has been awarded:

born 1845; died 1925; "having


mind his mighty epic Olympischen Fruhling." X1

Spitteler, Carl, Switzerland,

especially in

Another small country and an author,


outside France and

Germany and

own

award of 19 19 Carl
There was no prize given

the choice for the

Switzerland.
literature.

his

little

known

land,

Spitteler of
in

191 8, in

In spite of the fact that Nietzsche had

written of Spitteler as "perhaps the most subtle


thetic writer of

Germany,"

12

canton of Basel

fulfilling

in

aes-

name was not

his

Born

miliar to international readers.

years old.

was

fa-

Liestal,

in

1845, ne was nearly seventy-five

His work had been

idealistic in trend, thus

one condition of the prize his epic for which


;

he was honored had been completed fourteen years be-

Olympian Spring.

fore

He

had

suffered

appointments and lack of appreciation by


his later years.

ture

He

had never

from

dis-

critics until

lost his zeal for litera-

and desire to promulgate

ideals

of truth and

freedom.

He
11

12

was fortunate

in opportunities

for travel and

Inscription with the Nobel Prize Award in Literature, 1918.


Carl Spitteler; monograph compiled by Eugen Diederichs Verlag

in Jena.

THE NOBEL

2o6

study as a youth.

While

ury at Berne.

life

His father was

in the post-office

and later was Secretary of the Treas-

service at Basel

teler

PRIZE WINNERS

came under two

at Basel University, Carl Spit-

Wilhelm Wackernagel,

and writing

philologist,

He

loved

Beethoven, and showed taste for

He

and jurisprudence.

thinking he might be

ology

wisely that his bent

music,

especially

Later he went

art.

took courses

in

to

the-

but decided

a minister

was towards philosophy and

His ambition was

ture.

German

and Heidelberg, to study

to the Universities of Zurich

history

the

his

and Jacob Burckhardt, the historian of the

Renaissance.

Italian

on

influences of lasting results

become an

litera-

epic poet; he

essayed to write John of Abyssinia, Atlantis, Theseus

and Heracles but he pushed aside these pioneer


as puerile.

the

For

eight years he

was tutor

family of a Russian general.

efforts

in Russia, in

While

there,

he

was writing slowly the poem that he had planned

in

student days at Heidelberg, Prometheus and Epimetheus.

"Felix

It

was issued

first

Tandem" and ten

ture. 13

under the pseudonym of

years later with his

His Prometheus

is

own

signa-

"an exalted soul," suffering

rather than proving untrue to his spiritual ideals.


contrast

is

his

brother, Epimetheus,

By

receiving Pan-

dora's gifts and material honors jut losing his soul


until

he recalls Prometheus from

13 Studies

exile, to

from Ten Literatures by Ernest Boyd,

New

drive

away

York, 1925.

CARL SPITTELER
There

"the powers of evil."

mingled with modern ideas

He was

beauty.

207

depth of philosophy

is

in this

poem

of grace and

charged with imitating Nietzsche's

Also sprach Zarathustra so he wrote a pamphlet,

My

Relations with Nietzsche, emphasizing his igno-

rance of the latter's

work when he wrote

poem on

his

Prometheus.

He
and

continued his teaching

at

Switzerland at Berne

Neuenstadt, spending thirty hours a week

in

work

at

some

the classroom; then he did

In

Basel.

he

1883

journalistic

married and soon

after

which he

in

verse,

collec-

Extramundana,

lished

in

in

told,

cosmic myths of the history of creation.

tion of his lyrics, Butterflies (Schmetterlinge)

rhythm and love of nature.

pub-

excel in

In 1891, he inherited a

small fortune; from that time he was relieved from

teaching and writing; he went to Lucerne

routine

where the

scenic beauty increased his literary inspira-

tion.

He

essays

known

heiten)
idyl,

as

in

various forms

a series of

Laughing Truth (Lachende Wahr*

with irony and earnestness mingled, a prose

Gustav y and

lated by

Two

experimented

Mme.

la

juvenile Madchenfeinde,

Vicomtesse Le Roquette-Buisson as

Little Misogynists

(New York,

1922).

are clever illustrations by A. Helene Carter.

an amusing
to

children

tale,

trans-

There
This

is

perhaps more appealing to adults than

readers

by

its

subtle

wit

and modern


THE NOBEL

208

PRIZE WINNERS

educational problems; but

Two boys,

aged ten and

it is

nine,

entertaining and lively.

Gerold and Hansli,

"fine,

healthy boys," are returning to a military school after


a

vacation.

them

towards the

among

the

Their feelings

a declaration of war."

Theresa and Marianelli, are natural

girls,

There

and amusing.

that

great event might save

a flood or earthquake or epidemic

teachers, or

Gerold

only some

If

irony in the warning given to

is

"he should think for himself," a process

lest

both popular and unpatriotic, as many people

is

consider.

After the publication of some poems as Balladen

in

1905, Carl Spitteler wrote Imago, which he declared

was "an explanation of Prometheus and Epimetheus


what

really

a poet

made

his books,

poet

in

happened."
of

it."

14

reappears

Imago;

"Prometheus shows what

Autobiography, as
in

the

in

many

of

young man, Victor, the

in the discussion

or analysis of Frau

Doktor and German womanhood, the author has


shown
life

the provincial attitude, in

outside

Germany

Der olympische
lation as

conditions of

as well as within.

Friihling,

which

is

known by

trans-

Olympian Spring, was the mature expression

of Spitteler as poet.
intervals

many

from

It

1900 to

appeared from the press at


1905.

It

has

five

parts,

The German Classics, edited by Kuno Francke, New York, 1914,


Carl Spitteler: Life and Works, Vol. XIV, pp. 493-5 15.
14

CARL SPITTELER
with more than thirty cantos, written

Four

describing

lines,

Apollo,

in

209
iambic couplets.

from

Olympian

have been freely translated by Thekla E.

Spring,

Hodge
Threefold

Thou
Thou
Thou

thy royal crown of fame:

is

hast conceived it: that shows thy lofty aim.


hast dared

it

hast achieved

The poem

that tells the hero's valor.


it:

from thousands thou

art chosen.

mingles classic mythology with

satire, con-

With high
u
The Divine Comedy of the

temporary problems, humor and idealism.


praise,

New

it

has been called

Century."

15

It

Prometheus Unbound,
epical

poems.

has been compared to Shelley's


to Keats'

Endymion and other

Ananke, ruler of the universe,

is

vitalized character

from mythology who imprisons the

gods

He

in

journey to

Erebus.

permits them to

visit the distant

start

on a

world while Moira, daughter

of Ananke, gives springtime and peace to the world.

Their joy

is

turned into discord and suffering as they

come near;

And from

yawning cleft the echoes' thunder rolled,


For aye no spot on earth but witnessed grief untold.

The
The

the

blue flower of

has a vital part to play.

angels chant their message of hope, their assurance

of "a coming
15

Memory

morn" when

cocks will crow at the

Contemporary Review, January, 1920,

article

by

J.

G. Robertson.

THE NOBEL

210

PRIZE WINNERS

advent of a Saviour, and Part

The "Winning

idealism.

Amazons, and the

ends

of Hera,"

climax of

in a

Queen of

the

choice of Herakles as wanderer on

the earth, suffering any tortures for the sake of Truth,

are larger themes in Part II.

Marguerite Miinster-

berg has made an interpretive translation of parts of

poem which won

this epic

prize.

16

There

is

for

author the Nobel

its

drollery and satire, as in the plan

of Aphrodite to lead mankind away like children, and

The
complete work is

the frustration by rain and burlesque features.


poetic climaxes are vigorous and the

masterly and epical.


Spitteler

man

is

often ranked as representative of Ger-

literature

Gottfried

Switzerland,

in

Keller,

Conrad

in

Meyer,

company
author

of

with

The

Monk's Marriage, and Joseph Victor Widman, author


of Saints and Beasts.

and

verse, of

nality in his

He

showed

Goethe and

approach to

influences, in prose

Schiller but he

his subject

He

endured much loneliness of

his

literary

and

spirit

messages and from

its

had

origi-

treatment.

from neglect of

political

bitterness.

During the war he urged the neutrality of German


Switzerland and so lost favor with the people

who had

stimulated and encouraged him; in return he gained

popularity in France and was given the greeting of the


16

Vol.

The German
XIV,

p. 515.

Classics, edited

by Kuno Francke,

New

York, 1914,


CARL SPITTELER

211

French Academy when he was seventy years old.

His poems vary much

in

tones and measures; there are

musical Bell Songs (Glockenlieder, 1906)


joyful Butterflies of earlier years.

and

light,

In the later Bal-

lads he often struck a note against commercialism, with


a ring of robust idealism in behalf of spiritual values,

and denunciation of those "Prudes to the bone"


For what of old our fathers virtues made
They've chaffered for in markets or betrayed.

The death of Carl

Spitteler at Lucerne, in the current

revived interest in his

year,

evoked recognition of

life

his influence

and writings, and


towards revival of

the best in classicism, and his aspirations for freedom

and

sincerity in

modern

Among many tributes


may

life

and

to the

letters.

work of

this

poet a few

be cited from the monograph, compiled by Eugen

Diederichs Verlag in Jena, translated for this book by

Thekla E. Hodge.

Michael Georg Conrad, often com-

pared with Spitteler as a leading exponent of modern

German

"The marked

literature, writes:

superiority

of Spitteler over his contemporaries in the realm of


belles-lettres is

due to

his brilliant creative genius,

and

the rare combination of deep feeling and keen humor."

Widman,
theus:

another

"In

(mythology)

this

author-critic,

poem he

and

writes

of

Prome-

blends poetry with religion

thought

(philosophy).

Unfor-

THE NOBEL

212

PRIZE WINNERS

we can draw no comparison for nothing like


found in literature. " The same critic is enthu-

tunately,
it

is

siastic

about the poems, Butterflies (Schmetterlinge)

"The

fate of these

wondrous

little

a mysterious

whose

creatures,

transformation has ever brought to the

human mind

and touching symbolism, was wrought by

the poet's touch into scenes of dramatic tragedy, and


irresistible

charm."

Several commentators have stressed the qualities of

vigor and grotesqueness, combined with idyllic poetry


in the epics

and

sincere tributes

by

lyrics

Spitteler,

One

of the most

was that of Romain Rolland, written

soon after he had received the Nobel prize and before


that honor
that

it

adds

was given

to Carl Spitteler.

He

regrets

was not bestowed upon the Swiss writer and


"Spitteler

is

to

my mind

poet, the only one today

famous names of the

past.

the greatest

who approaches
.

European
the

most

Strange blindness of

the world to pass by the living flame of the genius of

the most inspired poet without even divining

dour."

The award

Rolland's desire.

of

its

splen-

19 19 was the fulfilment of

CHAPTER

XIII

KNUT HAMSUN AND HIS NOVELS OF


NORWEGIAN LIFE
The

1920 has been awarded:


Hamsun, Knut, Norway, born 1859: "for
prize of

work, The Growth of the Soil."

was

It

his

monumental

characteristic of a type of journalism in the

United States that the announcement of the Nobel

award

in literature

have been featured

in a digest

Horse-Car Conductor

Who

passing incident in the

months of

service

loom large
works

in

in fiction

Hamsun, should
"The
of news thus:

for 1920, to Knut

on

Wins

life

the

Nobel Prize."

Chicago but

a few

of this author

street cars in

minds that cherish

they

His

trivialities.

and drama, more than twenty-five

in

number, have been translated into a scort of dialects:


he

is

life

vies

an outstanding and unique figure

of to-day; his development of personality and fame


in

writings.

interest

Few

with the challenging quality of his


authors have been so self-revelatory

as he has been in his plays


statistical facts
1

in the literary

and

and novels.

side lights, to be

Inscription with the Nobel Prize

213

Award

Except for

found

in Literature,

in

other

1920.

THE NOBEL

2i 4

sources, one can

PRIZE WINNERS

make almost

a complete picture of his

background, his early struggles and revolts,


poetry and growing idealism, by reading

his innate

in succession

Hunger, Mysteries Pan, and Munken Vendt, followed


,

by Dreamers, Benoni,

Growth of

Children

the

of

and

Age,

the Soil.

Although Knut Hamsun's parents were of peasant


born August

stock, the boy,

4,

i860, at Lorn,

in

Gud-

brandsdalen, in eastern Norway, inherited strains of


artistic
in

His grandfather was

craftsmanship.

worker

metals (sometimes called a blacksmith) but fortunes

were low and, when the lad was four years


family

moved from

valley to the
wild,

Lofoden

Gudbrandsdalen mountain

the

Islands,

Nordland.

awesome scenery and simple

Here, amid

fisherfolk with sor-

did tasks, the youth grew to young manhood.

time he lived with an uncle


the state church; he
story,

"A

Spook,"

was

a severe

Hamsun

cemetery or the woods.


his cravings for
in

who was

a preacher, of

man.

recalls

For

In his short

those days with

and work and hours of escape to the

their floggings

shoemaker

old, the

Before he could satisfy

an education, he was apprenticed to a

Bodo,

in

Nordland.

He managed

to

writings published; in 1878 appeared the

get his

first

serious

poem, that showed appreciation of the glowing

Knut Hamsun: His Personality and His Outlook upon Life by


Modern Languages, Vol. Ill,
Nos. 1 and 2, pp. 2, 3.
2

Josef Wiehr, Smith College Studies in

By

courtesy of Alfred A. Knopf, Inc.

KNUT HAMSUN

KNUT HAMSUN AND

HIS NOVELS

colors and wild aspects of nature,

Meeting Again, and

Knud Peder-

the story Bjorger with the pseudonym,

son

Hamsund.

While there were

autobiography,

this

initial

215

interesting bits of

was

fiction

Bjornson and has not been revived by

its

of

imitative

among

author

his books.

Restless
as a

his

days at

Bodo

shoemaker, he worked for a short while as coal

heaver,

and

and unwilling to spend

and

sheriff's

later

road-maker and school-teacher

as

assistant.

Then,

like

so

many

Scandi-

navian youths, he decided to emigrate to America.

Some of

novels,

Under

these earlier experiences are recalled in his

the

Wanderer Plays on Muted

Autumn

Wanderers)

as

Strings

and

Star (in the English edition united

In the United States he drifted from

one occupation to another and covered a wide range of

farm laborer, clerk

pursuits as street-car conductor,

grocery store and lecturer.

He

in

cherished hopes of

literary chances in this country but the lack of them,

and the misfortunes that came upon him, made him


bitter for a time, in retrospect.

Those who

recalled

him on the Halstead


later

on

street car line in Chicago, and


u
a cable line, affirmed that he had a perpetual

stare into the horizon," that he

and had small volumes of


his pockets. 3
3

They add

Literary Digest 67: 35,

was "out-at-elbows"

classic poets sticking

that he

November

20,

out of

would forget to ring


1920.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

216

the bell for passengers or


in

his

One

reverie.

would

skeptical

is

memories of famous men.

was back
and

in Christiania,

lecturing.

tative study of

of

such

summer of

In the

885, he

her authorihe had been

Christiania, before he

America but that he found he was


;

life

detailed

doing some journalistic work

Hanna Astrup Larsen in


Knut Hamsun 4 says that

at the University of

back to his "old

over their feet

fall

on the road."

a misfit

went to

and went

In 1886, says Professor Josef Wiehr, 6 he returned


to

the United States

as

correspondent for Current

Events (Verdens Gang) but he was obliged to undertake manual

was with
banks.

work

to get a living

wage

a Russian fishing vessel off the

For about

toffer Janson, a

a year he

for a time he

Newfoundland

was secretary

Norwegian clergyman

in

to Kris-

Minneapolis;

he was then twenty-eight years old, and had been working on a farm in

North Dakota.

He

wanted

a chance

to lecture in Minneapolis on literary topics but his

ambitions were unrealized and he left America with

some

bitter feelings

and the manuscript of

book, The Spiritual Life of


Intellectual Life in
titled
4

Of American

his satirical

Modern America

Modern America), sometimes


Culture.

(or
en-

In a copy of this book,

A Study by Hanna Astrup Larsen, Alfred A.


York, 1922.

Knut Hamsun:

Knopf,

New

Ibid., p. 19.

Knut Hamsun:

Northampton, 1922.

His

Personality

and His

Outlook

upon

Life,

KNUT HAMSUN AND

HIS NOVELS

owned by Edwin Bjorkman, Hamsun wrote an

"A

dated 1905, thus,

tion,

my

ceased to represent

of tinfifes"

American

he asserts, "There

comment

it

is

has

He

an enormous gap

he finds no cultural

life

and

"prudishness"

The book
story,

justifies

"Woman's

Struggling Life,

is

as car conductor.

in

kept open by the

is

but

"selfcritic's
criti-

Victory,"

in

based on his ex-

periences in Chicago; in the Preface, he


life

It
7

"a masterpiece of distorted

His short

the collection,

and

ignorance."
that

is

chasm which

liberty, a

materialism

satisfied

cism."

youthful work.

opinion of America."

thick-headed democracy"

inscrip-

"American patriotism, engendered by means

scoffs at

coarse

217

tells

of his

"Zacchaeus," in the collection,

Brushwood (1903), is reminiscent of


the North Dakota farm.

the days

upon

In Copenhagen, on his return from America, he en-

Edward Brandes, then editor of


a daily newspaper there.
Through his influence, place
was found for the manuscript of Hunger (Suit) in a

listed the interest of

Copenhagen magazine,

New

Soil, in

anonymously; two years later

Introduction to

Bjorkman,

New

it

1888, to appear

came out

as a book,

Hunger by Knut Hamsun, translated by Edwin


By permission of Alfred A. Knopf.

York, 1920.

*Knut Hamsun: His Personality and His Outlook upon Life by


Josef Wiehr, Northampton, 1922, pp. 8, 9. By permission of Prof.
Wiehr.
9

Introduction to Hunger, translated by

Edwin Bjorkman.

THE NOBEL

218

PRIZE WINNERS

with the author's name on the title-page.

immature and
where by

makes

its

subjective, but

sincerity

it

It

gripped readers every-

Miss Larsen

and whimsicality.

book when she says

a true criticism of this

was

it is

"without beginning and end and without a plot but


has a series of climaxes."

it

Antithetical to such pas-

sages of poetic and dramatic power there are pages of

naturalism that causea revulsion of emotion and seem


to

some readers an

insult to taste.

and

relentless; perhaps, as Professor

"By

the production of this work,

free his

mind from

(p.

13).

same mixture of poetic high


characterized Mysteries.

hero

who

falls in

Wiehr

Hamsun

suggests,

sought to

memories of the past that

terrible

were haunting him"

absolutely true

It is

Two

years later the

and crass realism

lights

Johan Nagel

love with

Dagny

is

the restless

Kielland, daughter

of the pastor, and meets with tragic experiences and

Like

suicide.

and

his author,

"Nagel

is

at

Like

finds peace only in nature.

odds with

Hamsun

"
lite

he tries

vainly to adapt himself to conventions of society inu

becomes embittered.
Larsen
in

calls

"The Hamsun ego,"

as

Miss

the motif of these earlier tales, recurs

Editor Lynge, the drama, Sunset, and Pan (1894).

Lieutenant Glahn, the hunter


in his

hut and outdoors but

tact with

humanity; the

varda, the

woman

in this last

is

book,

proudly unhappy

tale

of this story,

ends
is

in

erotic

happy

is

in con-

tragedy.

Ed-

and capricious

KNUT HAMSUN AND

HIS NOVELS

219

to the point of disgust yet she has a pathetic element


in

her nature.

away from

Victoria shows an advance

the

"Hamsun

ego" of revolt and naturalism towards that of poetry:


Johannes, the hero, the miller's son,

even

nature;

loss

cannot

love

in

There are sentences of poetic


in

Munken Vendt (1902),

harmony with

is in

blight

souL

his

diction in this novel and

poem which

the dramatic

embodies the character of a lovable, simple vagabond.

One

recalls

words of Edwin Bjorkman,

the

Introduction to his translation of

Hunger; "The

and the vagabond seem equally

to

blood of

Hamsun from

have been

the very start."

attained to the second type of novel


jective

and more

idealistic

At

Kareno,

with

(1895)

writer, as hero,

and

(if

in

less

idealism

the

sub-

may

be

a trilogy of

the Gates of the

philosophical

artist

Before he

-the

Hamsun wrote

so expanded in meaning)
plays, beginning with

group

10

the

in

Kingdom

student

a wife of sexual domination.

and

The

author's tenets about life and government are voiced

by Kareno

in

this

drama and

Life's Play, ten years

later in setting; the third in the cycle, Sunset

shows Kareno
reactions
truth.

10

from

at

fifty,

earlier

The author

full

of

scientific

aspirations

for

(1898)

doubts and
liberty

and

indulges his satire against pro*

Hunger, translated by George Egerton

permission of Alfred A. Knopf.

New

York,

19;

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

220

fessional

"moralists" in these plays; sometimes,

indulges,

also,

unvarnished frankness of sensual

his

and

portrayals,

he

of deference

lack

his

for

old

age.

The play, In the Grip of Life, was translated by


Graham and Tristan Rawson and issued in 1924
(Knopf). The women in his plays are, generally,
animalistic, or erotic, lacking diversity in types.

With

the appearance of Children of the

Children of the Times)

Town and Growth of


interest in Hamsun

in

He was

still

(or

1909, followed by Segelfoss

the Soil, the reader of persistent

the

author had

was "finding

his place" in

realized

orientated himself, that he


literature.

Age

still

that

defying society, "the group,"

disclaiming belief in democracy, but he had gained

"a social vision."

the

pression

method

characteristic of

family of Willatz Holmsen,

of

his

sociological

ter that lingers in

memory; he

relations with his wife,

is

is

despotic,

a charac-

vitally real in his

of higher social rank, and

with his son, the musicianly boy; he


pathetic in his defiance of Tobias
dustrial "king"

for the ex-

The

ideas.

anxious Willatz III, a retired Lieutenant,

is

dramatic and

Holmengraa, the

from South America.

The

last

of stubborn pride and loneliness are scenes of


fiction.

of the

many

he has chosen a family, with strong racial

novelists,
traits,

In

Segelfoss
Soil,

in-

days

artistic

Town, written before The Growth

but translated afterwards by

J. S. Scott

KNUT HAMSUN AND

HIS NOVELS

(Knopf, 1925), continues the story of

Holmengraa, after

the departure of

leaving behind

lapse,

Mexican

in

blood,

who marries

of the small town.

'Norwegian Main
reiterated

Street.' "

sordidness

operator, Baardsen,

There
the

in

York,

1922)

tale.

wide reading.

W. W. Worster

The Growth of

calls

American

It is the

one book thus

edition, that

seems to win

human

Isac (or Isak

appeal.

a convincing character of elemental type.

bolizes

man, when face

a coarse

the Soil

It is localized in setting, objective in

theme, and universal in


is

much irony and


The telegraph

a daring, strong character.

is

Hamsun's "greatest triumph."


far appearing in

half

has been called a


is

In the Introduction to Dreamers,

(New

Mariane,

the commercial "leader

Town

Segelfoss

family and

a financial col-

daughter,

his

this

221

Lapp woman

to face with nature.


in

He

sym-

Inger

is

her physical nature yet she

seeks expression for finer feelings, even as she strangles


the third baby girl that

would bear, through

mother's curse of a hair

lip.

"Back

the message of this masterpiece of


It

life,

the

to the soil!"

Norwegian

is

fiction.

has a large group of Norwegian characters, and a

challenging tone regarding

many moral

issues,

but

it

maintains artistic unity.

That Knut Hamsun has grown


skill,

steadily in literary

that he has written novels of vigor and photo-

graphic

effects,

cannot be denied.

That he has

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

222

philosophical attitude towards humanity and the driving forces behind society (especially as applied to Nor-

way),

is

ence,

and

judgment,

together with

and grotesque humor, are other

must be accounted to

hand, he

self-education, his persist-

assimilated

his

caustic wit

that

His

also evident.

On

his credit.

qualities

the other

often slothful and diffuse in structure and

is

offensive to aesthetic

sexual impulses

and

minds because of

his stress of

He

does not con-

his coarseness.

done immorality but he seems indifferent to


istence.

In

moral

convictions,

need of a basic morality.

realizes the

Wiehr:

personal

his

"It

is

most

will stand

in

ex-

however,

he

Says Professor

just this absence of 'the

which

idea'

its

triumph of a

the

way of any

popularity of Hamsun's works with the great majority

of American readers."

Other explanations of

Ham-

towards Christianity and "constructive

sun's attitude

ideas" are given in this excellent study by Professor

Wiehr. 11

He

thinks that his countrymen, and "all

backward nations," are

much

in a

better position to

follow his advice than the millions that populate the


countries

leading

critics affirm

in his

world

in

industries."

Hamsun's compatriot, Johan

Some
Bojer,

Hunger
Pilgrimage and The Emi-

condensed, dramatic novels, The Great

The Last of
11

that

the

the Vikings,

nut Hamsun: His Personality


Josef Wiehr, Northampton, 1922.

and His Outlook upon Life by

KNUT HAMSUN AND


grants

is

dences

more

of

Hamsun
love of

gifted as a novelist and shows

idealistic

if

you

will,

Vagabonds,

and
in

his

223

more

personal

evilife,

of the wanderer,

traits

combined with the deep-rooted

home and devotion

industrial needs

In

vision.

has revealed the

"vagabond"

HIS NOVELS

to his

countrymen

in their

their educational struggles.

that

same meaning of wanderers

without goal or definite purpose,

is

the translated

title

of the recent, long novel which has been widely read

and discussed. 12

women

It

is

panorama of groups of men and

along the coasts of Norway,

fishing,

drying

and

salting fish, trading at village stores, lusting, drink-

ing,

hoarding and squandering their small savings, emi-

grating to America to find their fortunes, and returning


disillusioned.

Leading these groups

in the

foreground

of the panorama, are two men, Edivart and August.

The

latter

is

The

schemer.

clever,

erratic

mountebank

sinking of Skipper Skaaro in the bog,

and the consequent dementia of Ane Maria, who


to save

and

failed

him when she might, are the most dramatic

episodes.

The March

storm, long remembered,

is

de-

scribed with vigorous, poetic metaphors in Chapter

VII.

Again, Knut

Hamsun

has proclaimed himself

fearless in his defiance to outworn, literary

broad
12

in his

understanding of

human

modes and

impulses.

Translated from the Norwegian by Eugene Gay-Tifft, 1930.

CHAPTER XIV
ANATOLE FRANCEVERSATILE STYLIST
IN FICTION
The

AND

ESSAYS

prize of 1921 has been awarded:

Anatole France (Thibault, Jacques Anatole), Paris, born


1844; died 1924: "in recognition of his splendid activity as an
author,

an

activity

marked by noble

manity, charm and French esprit."

When Anatole

France,

winner of 1921, died

who had been

in the

large-hearted hu-

style,

the

Nobel prize

autumn of 1924, there was

scarcely a journal of standing in any country that did

not summarize his influence upon letters and

and

France
traits

other

and expression,

national in his

mockery of

this writer

analysis

life, in his

life

He

and

had written

intensity;
topics,
life,
1

lived
in

it

was broadly

of humanity,

in

his

dreamy idealism which

with a ruthless realism.


of

Parisian

Distinctly

nations.

He

to the

moods of

life

had lived the

end of

in

inter-

genial

coexisted
full

span

his eighty years.

biting satire and emotional

he had found themes

in

history,

current

As he neared the close of


emphasis was more upon the genial, kindly

and the future.

the

in

Inscription with the Nobel Prize

224

Award

in Literature,

1921.

his
as-

Copyright, 1925, by

J.

B. Lippincott Company.

Photograph by Choumoff, Paris

ANATOLE FRANCE

ANATOLE FRANCE

225

were

pects of humanity; his later literary expressions

memories of

boyhood and youth, the completion of

his

memories that began with

that cycle of intuitive

My

Book (1885) and Pierre Noziere, and ended


with Little Pierre and The Bloom of Life (1922).
Friend's

Between these volumes of imaginative and reminiscent delights, which

mind and

spirit

form

than

biography of his

a better

has

otherwise

been

written,

Anatole France produced such diverse literary types,

The Red

such books of ironic and cynical flavor as

The Revolt of

Lily, Thais,

Ring,

At

bille,

The

Man Who

A thirst,

Married a

The Life of Jeanne

the books of

idealism, he

tributes and

Wife, The

d? Arc,

The Gods

The Human

critical

essays and poems.

more reminiscent

flavor, with wistful

was indebted,

Nobel

of the

Dumb

the Mall, Penguin Island,

Comedy, and volumes of

To

The Amethyst

the Sign of the Reine Pedauque, Crainque-

Elm Tree on
Are

the Angels,

prize.
critical

especially,

for the honor

These had already won the


estimates

of

readers of Euro-

pean countries, of Canada, United States and South

Few

America.

writers have

ments passed upon them;


mental

in

had such diverse judg-

many

cases, the

tempera-

traits of the critic influence his reactions to this

author;
those by

in

other instances, most effusive tributes, like

James Lewis

May

and Paul Gsell, of recent

years (1924), have brought natural reactions

in

more

THE NOBEL

226

PRIZE WINNERS

unvarnished truth, tinged with wit and naturalism,

biography by Jean-Jacques Brousson:

the

like

Anatole

France Himself which has been called facetiously


Anatole France

in

Bed-Slippers (the French

Anatole France en pantouffles, 1925).


written as a friend and
a disciple;

M.

warm

title

Mr.

reads

May

has

admirer; Paul Gsell, as

Brousson, as private secretary and fear-

less narrator.

It

the

might be said that Anatole France was born into


of

inheritance

books

in

1844,

f r

his

father,

Francois Noel Thibault, was a bookseller of repute

throughout Paris and

maker
self to

in

Anjou,

environs.

its

Son of

young man.

shoe-

Thibault had taught him-

this elder

read and write while he had been

service as a

At

bookshops

his

in military

in the

Quai

Malaquais and Quai Voltaire gathered scholars and


authors, iconoclasts in politics and letters and religion;
the shopkeeper

was

a Royalist

and

a fervent Catholic.

In the character of Dr. Noziere, in Pierre Noziere,


his

son "has taken away the bookshop," as he con-

fesses, but

character.

he has revealed

many

In the Epilogue to

are other memories that

may

traits of his father's

The Bloom of Life

be "capricious," as he

admits, but are none the less true "records" of his

childhood.
is

Here

his father's lack of business instincts

suggested as elsewhere

he

read his books rather than to

would often prefer to

sell

them.

The

influence

ANATOLE FRANCE
of these boyhood days
directly with thinkers

must have been

vital

227

bookshop, with contact

in this

and writers, with wits and

and permeating
France

velopment of Anatole

critics,

in the later de-

and

psychologist

as

stylist.

In his last hours, we are told, this famous writer


who had been u a genial mocker at life," an epicurean

and

scoffer, a scholar

name of

his

of wide culture, called upon the

She had been the

mother.

first,

and one

of the most significant factors in his life-development.

There are passages of

less deferential

tone about her in

Anatole France Himself: a Boswellian Record, by JeanJacques Brousson (Philadelphia, 1925).

good Flemish

She was of

family, with unfailing esprit and opti-

mism, practical and able to "attend to the gears of


household management that got loose sometimes," with
an absent-minded father.
story-teller
gifts

and devoted to her boy with the unusual

which she alone,

and encourage.
vealed in

She was, however, a rare

many

How

in his

boyhood, could foresee

happy he was

chapters of his books

of acknowledged reminiscence

but

at

home

not

is

re-

alone those

others like

The

Crime of Sylvestre Bonnard and an occasional essay


On Life and Letters. By contrast with the joys of

home

the

delicate

table

linen

he

"tranquil faces," the easy talk

rooms and the

and decanters,

the

disliked the class-

restrictions of school life,

declaring,

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

228

Home

"Ah,
and

is

keen interest

College

famous school."

Stanislas

humanity made the

in

humor

sense of

life at the

endurable but he loved solitude;

he resented the gibes of instructors and students, and

he stole away to the quays along the Seine at the hour


of noon recess to eat his luncheon
eat

it

and

and returned too

or

late for the

to forget to

afternoon session

his chance to recite.

It

was

and

intuition that refused

when

the professor's report

his mother's faith

to be severe with him, even

of his school

work was "progress

nil

conduct bad,"
M. Du-

even when his father accepted the verdict of

boy would never accom-

bois, the professor, that the

Then

plish anything in arts or sciences.

whispered words that he never forgot

my

son you have brains and you will


;

hold their tongues."


influence in

the second

was the

city

The

Trocadero,

"Be

make

mother

a writer,

the envious

mother was the

making her son

and photographed on
age.

If his

his

first vital

a world-famous writer,

of Paris that he loved, studied

his

memory from boyhood

to old

parks and avenues, the Louvre and the


the

sidewalk cafes

and the bookshops

beyond beautiful Notre-Dame, the vivacious men and

women,
in

the workers on the streets and the children

the playgrounds, the stately palaces and the tiny

rooms above

a publishing

shop

all

these aspects of

Paris form a panoramic picture in his books.

ANATOLE FRANCE

229

In 1868, when Anatole France was an unknown,

dreamy, book-browsing young

man

of twenty-four,

there appeared an Etude of Alfred de Vigny which

poet

his tribute to the

beautiful

life,

who was

"the exemplar of a

which gave beautiful work to the world."

The author was known as one


men who gathered in the rue

of a group of young

de Conde to discuss

Two

poetry and other forms of writing.

he was serving
that

dropped

playing his
political

was

in the
in

flute.

army, trying to forget the shells

front of him by reading Vergil or

satires,

years later

In the years that followed he wrote


prefaces, read manuscripts

for the

publisher Lemerre, collaborated in Larousse's diction-

ary and did other "odds and ends" of an editorial


kind.

After the Franco-Prussian War, Lemerre published


the small

devoted

book of verse
and

his leisure

of some stanzas of
attention.

Better

had

to which Anatole France


zest,

lyrical

known

Poemes

apres.

In spite

beauty they attracted

is

little

The Bride of Corinth

that

appeared three years later and revealed the author's


keen analysis of paganism and early Christianity.
translated with other plays and

is

poems by Wilfrid

Jackson and Emilia Jackson, 1920.

was
2

It

For

a time he

assistant to Leconte de Lisle in the Senate Li-

Anatole France: the Man and His


New York, 1923, p. 72.

London and

Work by James Lewis May,


THE NOBEL

23o

brary. 3

As

witty

PRIZE WINNERS

conversationalist

companion, he was a favorite

and

in the salons

brilliant

of Catulle

Mendes and Mme. Nina de Callias, the would-be poet.


At the home of M. de Bonnieres, where gathered actors, writers,

and musicians, Anatole France was

ways welcomed.

al-

In 1881 appeared the book which

The

registered the beginning of his popular acclaim,

Crime of Sylvestre Bonnard; one may say that it is the


book by which, during the last forty years, the author
has been familiar to international readers, old and

young.

It is a

plot but with


sincerity

simple

tale, sentimental,

two marked

and charm.

without much

qualities of lasting appeal

Ten

years later he laughed at

continued popularity, especially the claim that


u

a masterpiece/' saying "it

was

it.

was

a masterpiece of plati-

tudinousness," adding that he wrote

won

it

its

it

for a prize and

Predictions of future fame were expressed in re-

views of this book and, four years later, the public

sponded to

My

Friend's Book, the

youthful memories, vignettes of

first

life

re-

of the cycle of

which reveal the

author's poetic reveries and friendly humanity.

They

from The Crime of Sylvestre Bonnard

as the

differ

author gives here photographic pictures of his boyhood, adolescence, and young manhood while
3

in Syl-

Ten Literatures by Ernest Boyd, New York, 1925.


Anatole France Himself by Jean-Jacques Brousson, Philadelphia,

Studies from

1925.

ANATOLE FRANCE

231

vestre Bonnard, the aged, lovable book-collector and

Academician, he gives an imaginative picture of what


the author

may

He

be.

lonely and dominated by

is

Hamilcar, and his housekeeper, cherishing the

his cat,

romantic memories of Clementine, and

is

urged by

these sentiments to his sacrifice for her daughter.

few of

his

boyhood memories, however, are incorpora-

ted into the early chapters of this

book

the craving

for a doll, the silhouette of the uncle, Captain Victor,

and other pages of wistfulness and humor.


Hearn,
classic

in his

Lafcadio

Introduction to the translation of this

roman, says words that may be applied to the

cycle of

memories (for they

all

have hall-marks of the

author's superb paradoxical genius).

"If by Realism

we mean Truth, which alone gives value to any study of


human nature, we have in Anatole France a very dainty
realist;

if

by Romanticism we understand that uncon-

scious tendency of the artist to elevate truth itself

beyond the range of the

familiar,

and into the emo-

tional realm of aspiration, then Anatole France

times a romantic.

...

It is

is

at

because of his far rarer

power

to deal with

withal

more young, and incomparably more precious:

the beauty of

what

this story will live."

what

is

is

older than any art, and

beautiful in

human emotion,

London, Bodley Head, Crown Edition, 1924, pp. v and

permission of Dodd,

that

Mead &

Co.

ix.

By

THE NOBEL

232

PRIZE WINNERS

After 1886 the weekly "Causerie," which Anatole

On

France contributed

Temps, increased
rank as

critic.

Life and Letters to the Paris

fame and established

his literary

Here appeared

such diverse, stimulat-

ing judgments upon writers of the day, as

and

sant

Dumas,

Francois Coppee

and Frederic
of

topics

and

Balzac

his

Marie

Maupas-

Bashkirtseff,

(compared with Suily-Prudhomme

Plessis),

Renan and George Sand; among

more general

were

interest

"Prince

Bis-

marck," "The Young Girl of the Past and the Young


Girl of the Present,"

and "Virtue

On

volumes of these essays,

been translated into English.

in

Four

France."

Life and Letters, have


It

was nine years

after

The Crime of Sylvestre Bonnard that another book


appeared to rivet attention upon this industrious, progressive author.

He

once declared that he wrote the

book "to please the public" but that he wrote

earlier

In development

the later, Thais, to please himself.

of

skill

in fiction

it

is

superior;

has been well de-

it

scribed as "an epic of eternal struggle between the


spirit

and the senses."

through some emotional


lier

The author had

crises since

books of reminiscence, notably

he wrote his ear-

My

happy home

passed

Friend's Book,

and the whim-

with

its

sical

domestic discussions between the wife of his youth

reflections of his

life

Anatole France: the Man and His Work by James Lewis May,
London, 1924, p. 120. By permission of Dodd, Mead & Co.
G

ANATOLE FRANCE

233

and himself about their daughter, Susanne.

He

had

traveled and become imbued with sensuous beauty of

southern lands; he had been annoyed, to the verge of


anger, by reactionists, represented in Thais by Palae-

mon, "who would banish joy and beauty from the


world."

He made

Nicias, often a skeptic in his sur-

face sentiments, his spokesman.


realist are

commingled

in this tale

even as they are found

The

poet and the

of disillusionment,

in the later,

more vehement

The Red

At the
Sign of the Reine Pedauque (considered by many
critics his masterwork), The Amethyst Ring,
The
Gods Are A thirst, The Wicker-Work Woman, Pen
books of the

novelist-satirist,

guin Island,

The Revolt of

stories

Crainquebille,

like

Lily,

the Angels,

The White

and shorter
Stone,

The

Seven Wives of Bluebeard, and Tales from a Mother


of Pearl Casket.

Fresh memories of the Dreyfus Case were awakened

by

his

poignant satire

ments of burlesque.

revealed in

wit

The

its

ek

author's historical research,

The Life of Jeanne d 'Arc,


The Gods Are Athirst, with sardonic

which bore ripe


is

Penguin Island with

in

fruits in

and dramatic passages between

mother, and his mistress.

Evariste,

his

Julie, his beautiful sister,

The ex-farmer of
now made by cutting out

appeals to the reader's sympathy.


taxes,

whose livelihood

cardboard dancing

is

dolls, is a

haunting character.

He

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

234

voices, perhaps, the author's attitude to life at this

period

that

is

was

full

of disillusionment and defeats

but was not worth the cost of one's anxiety to the point
In some of these satiric tales of

of despair.
tably

The Revolt of

the Angels

no-

life,

when they come

to

Paris and behold certain social conditions, there are

passages so naturalistic that they offend tastes of


"sophisticated" readers.
tole

France were tabooed

Some of

less

the books by Ana-

before the award

in libraries

of the Nobel prize; the year after that was given,

all

of his works, without due discrimination, were "placed

on the Index" by the

Roman

Curia because of excess

of utterances that were communistic and anti-clerical

When

in tone.

he went to Stockholm to receive this

prize in person he

was reported

to

have

said, regard-

ing the Treaty of Versailles, "the most horrible of wars

was followed by

a treaty

which was not a treaty of

The downfall

peace but a prolongation of the war.

Europe
reason

is

is

of

inevitable unless at long last the spirit of

imported into

its

councils."

In contrast to these fearless words that brought him


the condemnation of French journals, he

made more

urbane response to the literary honor conferred upon


him, adding to his personal gratitude, tribute to the

Swedish Academy:
7

Ibid., p. 108.

"Its decisions possess an inter-

By permission

of

Dodd, Mead & Co.

ANATOLE FRANCE
national value, and
tion of

what

I rejoice in it,

for

235

it is

a confirma-

for me, the principal lesson of the war,

is,

the beneficent influence exerted by intellectual inter-

There had been rumors,

course with other countries."

young men of France had repu-

well attested, that the

diated Anatole France as a leader, seeking other ex-

ponents of philosophy and echoing the adverse com-

ments upon him by Maurice Barres and Henri Massis,


editor of

La Revue

They contended

Universelle.

that

he failed to give them a constructive philosophy in the

He

hour of need.

never claimed to be a philosopher;

he was an observer of

dreamer, a lover of
than a thinker.

justice,

He

commentator, a poet-

an

ironist, a stylist rather

life,

was not widely read

other

in

languages and philosophies as were Georg Brandes or

He

bore some relationship to Brot-

teaux of his story,

The Gods Are Athirst" who was

Sainte-Beuve.

condemned
for

great

to death because of his lack of reverence


political

saw the world

revolutionists.

as a subject for keen wit that

sardonic but seldom bitter.


contrast with

Anatole

some of

He

found

his visions as a

life

France
is

often

sadly in

youth but he did

not despair of a future of more equality of conditions,

more

tolerance in creeds.

Paul Gsell, one of

his hero-

worshipers, in his records of conferences at the Villa


Said, the Paris

home

of "the Master," has recalled

significant thoughts uttered

by him upon "The Credo

THE NOBEL

236

of a Skeptic," "Politics
themes.

PRIZE WINNERS
Academy/' and other

in the

In his Boswellian Record by Jean-Jacques Brousson


(Lippincott, 1925) there are frank confessions of his
u

show conversations" and

"contradictory ideas"

his

He

which caused shyness and lack of clarity of mind.

almond

recalls "the

The Life of Jeanne

version of

esque"

icing" which he put on his first

d'Arc, to be "pictur-

and to please "the sanctimonious."

These

"snap-shots" of Anatole France "en pantouffles," in

moods of relaxation, are even less interesting than


some of the quotations of serious sort from the words
of this master of

style.

be often quoted;

Two

"You become

you become

good

tences."

"People take

a droll fellow.

significant sentences will

good writer

joiner; by planing

In reality

me

down your

sen-

for a juggler, a sophist,

have passed

ing dynamite into curl-papers."

just as

my

life twist-

Without question the return of Anatole France


the spirit and
ism,

of his earlier books, to the ideal-

combined with photographic vividness

Bloom of
Academy
8

mode

to

in

The

Life, influenced the decision of the Swedish


in his favor, in

1921.

He

was, in his old

The Opinions of Anatole France, recorded by Paul Gsell;


The Conversations, etc., New York, 1924.

in

Amer-

ican edition,
9

Anatole France Himself: a Boswellian Record, by Jean- Jacques


Brousson, pp. 95, 347, Philadelphia, 1925. By permission of J. B.
Lippincott Co.

ANATOLE FRANCE

237

age, living again the scenes of his youth

discussing

Who Do

with his schoolmate, Fontanet, "People

Not

Give Enough"; playing truant from the ferule of

Monsieur Crottu whose


justices"; recalling

went

of

tissue

in-

"Days of Enchantment" when he


photographing "Monsieur Du-

to his first play;

bois, the

"was

rule

Quiz," and plucky Phillipine Gobelin; and

yielding again to the spell of Vergil and the Sixth

Eclogue, with

its

The

wonder and beauty.

irony disappeared from these later pages

stinging

irony which

motivated such books (or portions of them) as Histoire

contemporatne and The Revolt of the Angels or

"A Mummer's

Tale"

in

Histoire comique.

Dual personality which


most marked
exponent of

resides in all persons

and of

"Compassionate idealism"

James Lewis

of charm and force, this

in this writer

his race,

May

his

is

the

all races.

phrase chosen by

governments and

are expressed or implied in

James Huneker

age among

to explain the polemical essays

radical criticisms of

calls

him "a

was

many

and

religions, that

of his writings.

true humanist"; he thinks

he loved humanity and learning; he loved words, also,


but he was "a

modern

thinker,

who has shed

the des-

potism of the positivist dogma and boasts the soul of


a

chameleon."
10 Egoists

10

He

by James Huneker,

sion of Charles Scribner's Sons.

stresses

New

his

York, 1909,

irony

p.

143.

which
By

is

permis-

THE NOBEL

238

"Pagan" and
Huddlestone,

his
in

PRIZE WINNERS

pity which

phrases are well chosen


is

"Christian."

Those Europeans, devotes

to Anatole France as "Ironist

traits

is

life as

in

it

though without

should be.

an age

in

He

"In his irony one

By showing

bitterness, he indicates

teaches tolerance and placidity

which even the reformers add to the con-

fusion by their reckless energy."


11

The

the interpretation of his salient

condensed but convincing:

life as it is,

a chapter

and Dreamer."

constantly catches glimpses of beauty.


us

Sisley

Those Europeans by Sisley Huddlestone,


mission of G. P. Putnam's Sons.

n
New

York, 1924.

By

per-

CHAPTER XV

TWO

SPANISH DRAMATISTSECHEGARAY
(1904),

The

prize of 1904

Echegaray, Jose,
di eQl

1833,

BENAVENTE

(1922)

was awarded one half to:


member of the Spanish Academy, born

September

14,

191 6:

"in

appreciation

of

his

comprehensive and intellectual authorship which, in an inde-

pendent and original way, has brought to

drama."

traditions of the Spanish

life

again the great

Until recent years, Spanish literature has been less


accessible

by translation than that of many other Euro-

pean countries.

Fiction by Galdos, Valera, Valdes,

and Ibaiiez have given to English and American readers

somewhat adequate impressions of the

realistic

power

and poetic undertones of some of these latter-day novIn drama, three of Galdos'

elists.

Martinez-Sierra, a dozen

plays,

nine by

more by Echegaray, and

several by Benavente have been rendered into excellent

English by such gifted translators as John Garrett

James Graham, Charles Nirdlinger, Hannah Lynch, Ruth Lansing, and others. 2 In the awards
Underhill,

Award in Literature, 1904.


Drama by Barrett H. Clark, New

Inscription with the Nobel Prize

See

1925,

Study of Modern

and Modern Drama

in

Europe by Storm Jameson,

1920.

239

New

York,
York,

THE NOBEL

2 4o

PRIZE WINNERS

to Spanish dramatists of the

Nobel prize

in

1904 and

1922, two generations with their differing standards


literary methods, have been represented

and

garay and Benavente.

In

German

literature, as ex-

ampled by Heyse and Hauptmann, and


with

its

representatives, Sienkiewicz

Polish

in

fiction,

and Reymont, one

same recurrent recognition

finds the

Eche-

in successive gen-

erations.

Jose Echegaray,

who shared

the honor of 1904 with

Frederic Mistral, was born in

Madrid

home

in

city

was

his

until his

death

in

1833; that

19 16, except for

periods of travel or retirement because of political

As Sully-Prudhomme found

friction.

his

first

im-

pulse towards science, so Echegaray studied mathe-

matics

searches,

also,

the republican

in

He

made regeology and philosophy. Under


ravenously."

"ferociously,

government he held public

offices, like

Ministers of Agriculture, Industry, and Commerce,


President of the Council of Education, and Senator
for Life.
School,

After teaching at the National Technical

where

he

had been educated,

identified with the University of

At

first

he

became

Madrid.

the writing of plays seems to have been a

pastime for

this

mathematician and

politician.

The

Wife of the Avenger At the Hilt of the Sword, and


The Gladiator of Ravenna, which appeared between
}

1874 and 1876, were popular

in

Spain but are

little

ECHEGARAY

JOSE

241

known by English translation. In 1877 he wrote a


drama that has been much discussed, since it was
translated

Madman

as

Ruth Lansing

or Saint by

(Poet Lore, Boston, 1912); another translation by

Hannah Lynch
or Saintliness.

rano

is

It is a

used

(Boston, 1895) bore the


Still

in

title,

another translation by

Folly

Mary

Ser-

Library of the World* s Best Literature,

strong play emotionally, with that touch of ideal-

ism and romance which were traits of the author,

blended with his keen

wealthy

man

mother of noble family,

as he

and the world supposed,

No

tale.

who

dies after she

longer young, with his daughter

engaged to a son of the Duchess of Almonte, he


termined to

tell

specialist in

mental disease

to

not the son of a rich

is

but the child of his nurse, Juana,

him the

Lorenzo,

of Madrid, finds that he has been deceived

regarding his parentage; he

tells

Don

analysis.

is

de-

the truth and so defy his family.

examine him;

at

the

is

called with the physician

same time he sends for

notary to record his renunciation of his name and


estate.

His

with the lines:

mad

because he

not be!

monologue

final

"What!
is

is

is

dramatic, beginning

man

to

be declared

resolved to do his duty.

Humanity

It can-

is

neither so blind nor so bad

plays

by Echegaray, which called

as that!"

These

earlier

forth such ardent praise

from

his

countrymen,

who

THE NOBEL

242

PRIZE WINNERS

would rank him with Calderon and Lope de Vega of


the past centuries, are trivial in literary value beside

two of

later years,

Don

of

Juan.

The Great Galeoto and The Son

Eleven years

separated

two

these

strong dramas (i 881-1892) during which the author


continued

to

write

Harold

setting like

some

plays,

the

with

historical

Norman and Lysander

the

Bandit; others were of romantic type, some tragedies

and more comedies.

In general, he sought to revive

romantic drama, to proclaim the sharp

between passion and duty.

more pronounced than

conflicts in life

His motives were often

his characterization; his

and women were sometimes mere mechanisms,


ing their battles for honor and truth.

men
fight-

There was

chivalrous note in his lines where domestic fidelity

formed

the

Soliloquy was

keynote

of

much used by

the

emotional

struggle.

this dramatist.

When The
translated,

Son of Don Juan and Mariana were


and linked in the memory of English

readers with

study

to

grown

in

Two

this

The Great Galeoto,


forceful

world-critics gave

Spanish dramatist

who had

favor during the decade from 1890 to 1900.

characteristics of

The Great Galeoto were noted:

the fearless, vigorous portrayal of the evil of gossip

and resultant tragedy; the


age

fact that the chief person-

in the play exercised occult influence

appear on the stage.

He

is

and did not

the "busybody,"

who

ECHEGARAY

JOSE
creates

(or suggests their words)

characters

Elizabeth Wallace,

present.

the

who

the troublesome situations,

all

243

but he

not

is

an article of value

in

Monthly, September,

Atlantic

directs the

in

on "The

1908,

Spanish

Drama

of Today," says:

"This vanishing

hero

the cruel, careless world,

hastening eagerly

is

to cast the

first

stone, and, so soon tired of the sport,

hurrying on to

some new excitement, leaving

find

death and destruction

in its

Madrid (or

the city of

wake."

Don

This culprit

Severo, the plotter,

is

There

society anywhere).

are individualized characters like


Julian;

Theodora and Don

may

well be

compared

to Iago.

Even more
Son of

Don

than this romantic tragedy

virile

Juan;

it

The

is

suggests Ibsen's Ghosts, both in

germ-idea and denouement, although

has distinc-

it

tive merit.

Echegaray borrowed the words of the

Norwegian

dramatist

for

the

"Mother, give me the sun!"


Spanish

author

expands

lines

Lazarus,

of

In the Prologue the

these

symbolic

words

to

"enfold a world of ideas, an ocean of sentiments, a


hell of sorrows, a cruel lesson, a

society

and to the family

circle."

at the bar of justice, as in

offense this time

lunacy which
3

By

is

falls,

supreme warning to
Society

is,

again,

The Great Galeoto;

lax morality of parent,


in retribution,

on the

permission of the Atlantic Monthly Company.

the

and the

child.

The

THE NOBEL

244

mother of Lazarus
are found

Mariana

PRIZE WINNERS
a

is

convincing

some of the strongest

delineations

Don

Echegaray's dramas, notably Clara, wife of

in

In

character.

Castulo, the grotesque archeologist, and Mariana, the

widow, with riches

in

America, described by Clara

a touch of jealousy, yet appreciation) as

hardly a widow and

is

woman

is

is

ment.

widow who

The

almost a child."

Melodrama

enters

and

excite-

into the closing scenes of intrigue

James Graham has translated both Mariana

and The Son of Don Juan.


Echegaray continued to write

plays, stimulated by

When

the recognition and the honors of 1904.

award was made, there was

Madrid;

in

a popular demonstration

made by Galdos,

Mendenez Palayo, who had once been


this

the

the king presided and presented the prize,

while speeches were

On

latter

capricious, disdainful, yet passionate in her

relations with her lover, Daniel.

somewhat

(in

occasion

Palayo

Echegaray has been the

said:

Valera,

his bitter critic.

"For

thirty

arbiter

dictator,

and

years

and idol

of the multitude, a position impossible to attain without the strength of genius, which triumphs
as everywhere."

He

in literature

was much honored

and called "a second Victor Hugo."

It

in

France

has not been

easy for American students to interpret the plays by

Echegaray; they
4

Review

fail to

understand

of Reviews, 31: 613.

fully, especially

on

JOSE

ECHEGARAY

245

the stage, the situations and sentiments of the Spanish

Many

dramatist.

of the keen, brilliant

both

lines,

of analysis and wit, suffer in translation into English.

For Drama League readings, or group study and


his

cussion,

and study.

plays lend themselves to interpretation

This

true, not alone

is

W.

Always Ridiculous, translated by T.

bill

the longer and

dramas already noted but such short pLays

familiar

The

dis-

Street Singer, translated by

and included

as

Gilkyson, 5 and

John Garrett Under-

Frank Shay's 25 Short Plays of

in

international selection

(New

York, 1925).

Irony and

wistfulness are mingled in this dramatic picture of the


little

beggar-girl,

Suspiros,

of Augustias, the street

and her lover, Pepe.

singer,

Suspiros,

sixteen

and

pretty but sickly, speaks to Coleta, a professional beg-

gar of

fifty

years:

You

Coleta.
Suspiros.

don't

Yes,

sir,

know how to beg.


I know how to beg

the trouble

is,

people

"A penny for my poor mother


who is sick." And you ought to see how sick she is! She
Well, I get nothing. Or else I say, "A
died two years ago.
penny for God's sake, for my mother who is in the hospital, in
don't

know how

the

name

No

one gives, either.

Coleta.

I say,

to give.

of the Blessed Virgin!

They

don't,

eh?

have two baby brothers."

And how many

going to have to-night?


5

Poet Lore, Boston, 1908.

Drama, 25, 62-76.


By permission of John Garrett Underhill.

brothers are you

THE NOBEL

246

Ay, Signor Coleta!

Suspiros.

me

Last night

anything.

to-night

whether

PRIZE WINNERS

mean

to

have

and

five

from

see

my

got sixpence, so

what they

give me, or

mother.

how many

Just in the family,

Coleta.

and

tried four

just get the cuff

had two and nobody gave

brothers have you,

really?

Really,

Suspiros.

Ay! they

mother.
treated
I

them

had

died

because of the

me

as she does

and

can make two or three dollars

Jativa,

and

live

with

my

But they

two.

died,

my

like

way my stepmother

am dying!
am going to
I

Listen!

If

run away to

aunt.

Echegaray was seventy-two years old when he gained


the prize; he

was already

called

by some

"representative of the older generation."


his

is

critical scholars in

among

assured

century.

Interest in

the

every country, and his rank,

romantic dramatists

of this

His seriousness, combined with keen wit and

insight, has

stoy.

been compared with similar

traits of

exampled

cited.

Tol-

Both writers have emphasized the "dignity

of suffering" for the sake of spiritual freedom.


is

however, has gained rather than waned,

plays,

among

critics

in

Echegaray's

Conscientious

Spanish dramatist has

Madman

and sincere
left a

This

or Saint, already

in

his

work,

this

few plays of strong char-

acterization and potent message to society, a message


that has an element of idealism, flashing out

grim

realities of life.

amid the

JACINTO BENAVENTE

247

Jacinto Benavente
The

prize of 1922 has been awarded:

Benavente, Jacinto, dramatic writer, Madrid, born


"for the happy

way

tions of the Spanish

in

1866:

which he has pursued the honored

drama."

tradi-

whom

Jacinto Benavente, to

the

Nobel prize was

given in 1922, was acclaimed as especially worthy by


those

who

sought for a representative of "the new

generation" in Spanish drama

what

was known

as

"the generation of 1898" which decried past methods

and urged modern themes and viewpoints.

was born

in

Madrid

Echegaray.

in

Benavente

1866, a generation younger than

His father was a prominent physician

He

and the boy had stimulating home environment.

studied law for a brief time but he inclined towards

He

writing and the theatre.

had some actual

ex-

periences "on the road" with theatrical troupes and

with

circus,

thus

gaining

first-hand

information

about theatrical devices and the needs of both actors

and audiences.

His

first

venture

in print

was

as a

poet, in 1893, but the next year he published a play,

Thy Brother's House.

This and other immature plays

received scanty notice until, in 1896, appeared In Society.

Two

focussed
8

years later

attention

upon

The Banquet of Wild Beasts


this

Inscription with the Nobel Prize

daring,

Award

brilliant

in Literature,

play-

1922.

THE NOBEL

248
wright.

He

became

PRIZE WINNERS
among young

a leader

men in Madrid who, following


American War, were eager to renounce
sional

to revolutionize society by exposing

They

nesses.

would

punctuate

Spanish-

the

tradition and

vices

its

profes-

and weak-

"modernism"

A sum-

thought and expression with ideals of poetry.

mary of

this

is

found

in

is

disdain "traditions,"

if

Modern Drama

1925).

than some of his literary

less radical

associates in Spain, France,

He

of the

(New York,

by Barrett H. Clark

Benavente

A Study

and Russia.

they ring true to

He

does not

life

and

and characterization,
pathetic

scenes

satires

on aristocracy and sym-

peasant

of

life.

readers or spectators to think,

from

art.

manner

graceful and versatile, writing plays of

is

in

if

He

compels

his

they will get stimulus

The Truth, Autumnal Roses, The

his plays like

Magic of an Hour, and Field

of Ermine.

In 19 13, Benavente was elected to membership in


the Spanish
tional

and

Academy.

other

is

widely quoted on educa-

freedom than now

European

countries.

He

widely, seeing his plays performed and


in

He

political, as well as literary affairs.

ideals for a greater

and

He

exists in

has

has

Spain

traveled

making

friends

Russia, England, South America, and the United

States.

The Passion Flower (La Malquerida)

tragedy of peasant

life

the

with colorful setting and tense

emotion, has been popular in America, as a

film,

and

Copyright by

Underwood

&

Underwood, N. Y.

JACINTO BENAVENTE

JACINTO BENAVENTE
a

as

play

Nance

with

Theatre Guild of

O'Neil

New York

as

249

The

actress.

and the Jewish Art

Theatre gave careful study to the interpretation of

The Bonds of
serious lesson
istry.

One

As

Interest.
is

in

many

of his plays the

not stressed to interfere with the art-

of his

characterizations

best

is

Neve,

heroine of El Hombrecito, often compared to Ibsen's

Nora of
inner

Doll's House.

meaning of

a play

Benavente believes that the

must be revealed by the mind

He

or emotions of the spectator or reader.


indebted
share

a debt

deeply

which English and American readers

for the intuitive, careful translations and edit-

ing of several series of his plays by

Underhill (Scribner's,

New York,

such interpretation can one

in

is

John Garrett

1917-1925).
fully

Only

appreciate

the

strength and fineness of character-drawing, the satirical thesis, the fantasy

and poetry blended

The Governor's Wife, The Prince

as

in

such plays

Who

Learned

Everything out of Books, Saturday Night, The Other

Honor, and The Necklace of Stars, with its fanciful


charm and sermonic lesson of love to one's neighbor.
In Ernest Boyd's Studies
is

good summary of

144 plays.

Mr. Boyd

been overestimated?"
criticism.

Jameson's

his

from Ten Literatures there


life and work which includes

raises the question,

Possibly

Valuable material

Modern Drama

in

is

it is

"Has

he

an echo of French

found, also, in Storm

Europe and

Study of

THE NOBEL

250
the

Modern Drama by

1925).

new

PRIZE WINNERS
Barrett

H. Clark (New York,

intensive study

by Walter Starkie
Expressionism

(New York,

classifies the

Jacinto Benavente

is

1925).

work of dramatists

The methods used

Benavente, Molnar, and Capek.

by the Spanish playwright to embody


to "generalize" both the action

that they

become symbols of

like

and

this principle are

his characters, so

real life, appealing to the

He

subjective element in readers.

has declared that,

henceforth, he intends to write plays for publication

and not for the theatre.


a play

may

"The

"I have written

sand parts, yet of that number

which

ters I

stress

upon the

in

is

which

by being

more than

a thou-

can recall perhaps

had conceived, when they stepped upon the

futility

my

plays."

stage.

This

of staging plays that should

be interpreted by the reader's

mind,

is

in

have recognized as being truly the charac-

have not even seen some of

way

be appreciated thoroughly

read," he says.

five

only

own imagination and

not unlike that by Maeterlinck, already noted

a previous chapter.

Benavente not infrequently uses puppets


real characters to

in

convey his inner meanings.

place of

Some-

times they are given real names but they are not the
true characters he wishes the reader to discover in

Plays; fourth series, xix, edited by John Garrett Underhill.


permission of Mr. Underhill and Charles Scribner's Sons.

By

JACINTO BENAVENTE
them, aJ

in

the

first

The Bonds of Interest.


The Magic of an Hour, 10 he

scenes of

In a brief parable-play,

has two symbolic characters,

"An

251

Merveilleuse" and

Incroyable," two porcelain figures upon columns

and

books and flowers,

that converse about

life

poetry and music.

In this adroit, short comedy the

love,

author has interwoven some thoughts that express that


peculiar idealism which

weak humanity and


is

is

the craving "for something which

not ourselves, and yet which

The

that contrast between

his,

is

the breath of living."

nearest approach to this ideal

light,

love,

"by the magic of an hour,"

transform,

cowards, "devils

beasts,

is

in

crime,"

into

which can

men-

evil,

"spirits

luminous with a divine wisdom through

instincts of the beast." 1X

of
all

In sentences of such grop-

ing faith, such idealism of the "inner eye," scattered

through the hundred and more plays by Jacinto Benavente, one

the

Nobel

Jameson

may

establish, in a

With

prize.

His plays vary


of the later

is

an

in

On

the score of

artist, versatile

and yet vigorous

delicate

blended what Storm

"divine sanity."

calls his

literary achievement, he
cere,

this is

measure, his right to

in

his

like

drama some

Magic

of

an Hour,

Pair of Shoes or Doubtful

Virtue, indicate the types of psychological plays

10 Ibid.
11 Ibid.,

sin-

workmanship.

value for the student of

titles,

and

p. 125.

among

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

252

Continental playwrights.
istic

plays,

idealism.

finer,

however, there are

vital

book)

says,

character-

expressions of

Mr. John Garrett Underhill

to the author of this


idealist

more

In his

(in a letter

Benavente

of the highest type and his philosophy

and most

explicitly stated in

and Field of Ermine

The School of

service

and

is

is

an

best

Princesses

sacrifice."

CHAPTER XVI
W.

The

YEATS AND HIS PART IN THE


CELTIC REVIVAL

B.

prize of 1923 has been awarded:

Yeats, William Butler, born 1865: "for his consistently emo-

which

tional poetry,

people's spirit."

in the strictest artistic

form expresses a

Gregory (London and

New

Lady

edited by

In the book, Ideals in Ireland,

York, 1901), the editor

speaks of the various contributors to this revival of


letters including

Douglas Hyde

George Moore,
and

W.

B.

(George Russell),

Yeats as "candle-stick

Unlike the "butcher and the baker,"

makers."

who

have their daily newspaper and appointed tasks that


are appreciated, this type of worker,

holds the candle,


idealist

who

is

finds

who makes and

He

not so well served.


himself,

too

often,

is

the

ignored

or

maligned; he searches out the "dark places of the


earth"; he
idealism.

winners
1

is

the seer, seeking for truth, aspiration,

This analogy holds good for many of the


of

the

Nobel prizes

Inscription with the Nobel Prize

253

Bjornson,

Award

in Literature,

Mistral,

1923.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

254

Tagore, Maeterlinck, Selma Lagerlof, Heidenstam,

By

Rolland.

of

W.

B. Yeats

would be added

With

of 1923.

name

universal consent of readers the

delicate

to this

list,

the winner

imagery Lady Gregory has

expressed the subtle gift of this Irish poet-dramatist,


his

ability

to

catch

evanescent," which

called

In

idealism.

his

o'

the wisp

fire,

the

mark of

universal

"the will

paper,

is

contributed

Mr. Yeats
Literary Movement"

to

mis-

book,

this

Ideals in Ireland,

writes a brief "History

of the

in his

country and asks

whether

this revival of folklore

which

called the Celtic revival, will

is

and poetry of the

become

soil,

a part

of the intellectual and social development of Ireland.

These words

were

written

in

1899;

the

quarter

century since then has answered the question


affirmative

and has accorded to Mr. Yeats

in

the

large

share in this appreciation of simple beauty, love, and


chivalry.

The names

of

Donn Byrne and Padraic

Colum, James Stephens and Winifred Letts, Lord

Dunsany and

St.

John Ervine, suggest some of the

poets and playwrights, "the candle-holders,"

followed the inspiring leadership of

John Synge, Dr. Douglas Hyde, and


weaving

their

and of

Lady Gregory,

W.

B. Yeats,

romances and poems about old ballads

and folklore of the "sage-cycles" of


tory.

who have

Irish literary his-

In this Gaelic literature are songs of battles


love, legends of saints

and heroes, that have

4**

Photograp/U by Bain Xezvs Service

WILLIAM BUTLER YEATS

W.
the simplicity

YEATS

B.

255

and musical vigor of old Greek odes and

plays.

As

dramatist, certain critics will aver, with reason,

was greater than Mr. Yeats;

that Synge

among

the peasantry

folk

for

as researcher

and forgotten

tales

Lady Gregory and Dr. Douglas Hyde may


deserve higher rank.
In the writings of Mr. Yeats,

poetry,

however

lyrics,

distinctive

ballads,

qualities:

many of
Air," "The
in

The Host of the


"The Fiddler of Dooney";
of such plays as

Hour-Glass, and
of his plays
to

These poetic

his ballads, notably

Stolen Child," and

they form the literary warp

The Land of Heart's Desire, The

On

Baile's Strand.

Mr. Yeats has emphasized

Lady Gregory

there are three

and merriment.

found

in

beauty, mystical strains,

lyrical

blended wistfulness,
distinctions are
u

and plays

In every edition
his indebtedness

for assistance as well as inspiration.

In his Notes to Plays

in

Prose and Verse

(New York,

1924) he acknowledges the sources of "the greater

number of

his stories," as those

found

in

Lady Greg-

Gods and Fighting Men and Cuchulain of


Muirthemne. He affirms that these two books have
ory's

made

the legendary tales of Ireland as

familiar as

are the stories of Sir Arthur and his Knights.

he records his gratitude to

Lady Gregory

ducing hfm to firesides where

countenance of country

Again,

life."

for introu
he might get the true

third

form of

help-

256

THE NOBEL

fulness

was

dialect

and her generous work

Mr. Yeats

PRIZE WINNERS

the skill of this friend in her mastery of

in this detail

in revising the lines

His own

of form.

of

ability to

evoke music and poetry from dreams and traditions,

and
ant
tion

to portray the simple, domestic incidents of peas-

was coordinated with Lady Gregory's

life,

aspira-

and background of folklore.

The
known
named

father of William Butler Yeats was a well-

John Butler Yeats, R.H.A. The son,


for his paternal grandfather, was born at

artist,

Sandymount, Dublin, June

15,

1865.

His father's

family had been identified with the church; the grandfather of the poet

was Rector of Tullylish Down.

His mother's father was


at Sligo.

merchant and shipowner

The boy passed much

time with these grand-

parents in the old town by the sea.


school age, he

and went

to

was
the

When

he was of

London
Hammersmith.

living with his parents in

Godolphin School,

At fifteen he returned to Dublin, attending the Erasmus Smith School and living with his relatives at
Sligo.
Memories of these early days are interwoven
with legends and fancies in The Celtic Twilight, and
the novel of autobiographical trend, John Sherman,

which

appeared

conagh."
sick in

under

the

Like his hero of

London and longed

pseudonym

this tale,

of

"Gau-

Yeats was home-

to return to the environ-

ment of Sligo (or Ballah), to the familiar

streets, the

W.

B.

YEATS

257

rows of tumble-down cottages with thatched roofs,

and the walls of the

the wharves covered with grass

garden where,

it

was

said, the

the ghost of the former

poems he

In his
cliffs,

owner

gardener used to see

in the

2
a rabbit.

form of

waves dashing upon the

recalled the

and the distant

the island of Innisfree,

hills at

sunset.

His father hoped he would become an

and

artist

so continue the family profession; the youth studied


art for a brief time but he

He

ductive.

preferred to browse

making

translations or

and poems.
fires in

was

them

Even more he

restless

and unpro-

in libraries,

from

liked to

sit

reading

Gaelic

tales

by the turf

old Connaught and listen to the folk tales of

The

poem in his collection of


u
To Some I Have Talked With
1906, is addressed
By the Fire." Here he saw again, in reverie, the

the peasantry.

first

ghostly companions and heard the weird tales of


the dark folk

Of

When

he was nineteen his

Statues,"

view.

was published

first

lived in souls

in the

poem, "The Island of


Dublin University Re-

With other young men

became interested
2

who

passionate men, like bats in the dead trees.

in a

Brahmin,

at the University

who was

in

he

London;

John Sherman, pp. 88-90, and W. B. Yeats: a Critical Study by


New York, Dodd, Mead & Co., 1915.

Forrest Reid,

THE NOBEL

258

PRIZE WINNERS

on their invitation he came to Dublin to teach

his

This yearning towards the occult was

philosophy.

He

natural for a temperament like that of Yeats.

Brahmin

recalled that they fed the

a plate of rice or

an apple every day and listened to his expositions.

Mrs. Katherine Tynan Hinkson,

young manhood and

in

a friend of Yeats

later life, in her

Twenty-Five

Years; Reminiscences has given interesting stories of

poems, even

his zest in reciting his

in

the middle of

the night and of his dreamy, gentle nature.

In 1889,

The Wanderings of Oison established the fame of the


young Irish lyrist. Besides the title-poem here were

'The
Goll."
a

Gardens,"
after the

ire

pictorial

although he

and

"Down

sentimental.

made

who

some

London,

In

still

interest

was strong

Wind Among
Good and Evil.

poems, The

Mr. Yeats

is

and

W.

obtained for him a commission to

Chambers' Encyin

varied "cults"

and forms of symbolism which he revealed

Ideas of

home-

congenial friends at the Chesh-

topics about Ireland for

His

in

by the Salley

Arthur Symons, Lionel Johnson,

E. Henley,

clopedia.

rhymes, like

King

of

were traceable

poems were published, Yeats was

Cheese

write

lilting

"The Madness

Tom Moore

Influences of

poem, with

sick,

and

Child"

Stolen

both

his

the Reeds, and the essays,

lyrist

latter type of writing he

in

and playwright;

owes

his recognition

to

the

by

stu-

W.
dents of the
ities

are

drama

in

Lady Gregory, Forrest

his

plays.

George Moore,

Reid, his critic and biographer,

and others have stressed

his large part in the success,

as well as the inception, of the


gift

259

every country; the two qual-

in

interwoven

YEATS

B.

Abbey Theatre, "a

of immense and national importance upon Ire3

One would

work of Lady
Gregory and Douglas Hyde, of William Fay and
Florence Farr and Miss Horniman, who contributed
as actors, playwrights, and financial supporters.
The
land.''

not minimize the

assurance of this theater for performance of his plays

gave incentive to the dramatic impulse of Yeats.


created

new

plots

and

He

utilized folk tales interwoven

With the aid of Lady Gregory and Edward Martyn, he won success with plays
like The Pot of Broth, Cathleen ni Hoolihan, The
King's Threshold, The Land of Heart's Desire,
Deirdre and The Hour-Glass, This last play, first in
with fantasy and poetry.

prose, later in verse,

play; the

in

search for "one person

God and Heaven,"

Only

in

a masterpiece of the morality-

Wise Man, faced with death within an

goes desperately
in

is

Teague, the

so that he

fool,

not in the schools of the

who
Wise

can he find such assurance.

may go

who

hour,

believes

to Paradise.

has learned his lessons,

Men

but

in

the woods,

In latei versions of this

play the author introduced a strange Gaelic ballad.


3

Op.

cit.,

p.

si.

THE NOBEL

26o

PRIZE WINNERS

In his Notes to the volume of Plays in Prose and

Verse,

recently

(New

reissued

Yeats gives credit for the

first

York,

Mr.

1924),

use of correct dialect to

Lady Gregory's Spreadsame Note he declares that

Synge's Riders to the Sea and

News.

ing the

words "never flow

his

verse"

in

In this

when people speak

need not be rhymed verse, for some of

it

freely but

the finest lines in Deirdre and

The King 's Threshold

The Land of
poet-playwright's words all "flow

are rhythmical but not in rhyme.

Heart's Desire the

This

freely."

with

a general favorite

is

and

professionals

may

Forrest Reid

amateurs

In

among
upon

be extreme in praise

his plays

the

stage.

when he

"the most beautiful thing that has been done

it

time,"
Bell,

calls

our

in

The Sunken
Peter Pan, and The Blue Bird among poetic,
for

invites

it

comparison with

memory, however,

fanciful

plays.

pictorial

and dramatic, simple and beautiful

It

Eve legends and

lingers

in

in

as

May

"fairy spell," in the natural char-

acters, well contrasted, of

Maire Bruin and her

hus-

band, Shawn, of Father Hart and the old parents by

That

the fireside.

is

an exquisite couplet that Maire

speaks to her sturdy husband, when the fairy

are the great door-post of this house,

And

the red nasturtium climbing up. 4

of Heart's Desire by W. B. Yeats, copyright by W. B. Yeats,


York, 1911; also in Plays and Controversies, New York, 1925.
permission of the Macmillan Co.

Land

New
By

O you

calls,

W.

B.

The Shadowy Waters

YEATS

another symbolic play,

is

Begun when Yeats

with an undertone of idealism.

was young,

it

261

changed form often before the poet was

Into this he has introduced varied types

satisfied.

the magic harpist, the sailors, and Dectora, the restless,

craving

The

woman.

king, Forgel,

who

cares not for

gold or fame, voices some tenets of the author's creed


in the lines

All would be well

Could we but give us wholly to the dreams,


And get into their world that to the sense
Is shadow, and not linger wretchedly
Among substantial things; for it is dreams
That lift us to the flowing, changing world

That

the heart longs for. 5

Mr. Yeats has ever been


once that,

if

a dreamer-poet; he said

our dreams could

all

come

might not be any poetry to be written


by his biographer, Forrest Reid.

so

Many

true, there

we

are told

of his dreams

are embodied in his lyrics, his plays, his short stories

and sketches, and

The

his essays, Ideas of

Celtic Twilight

is

in this

the

form.

love and service are found in the volumes

of poems, like
5

"The Binding of

an example of his highest art

Dreams of

Evil.

and The Secret Rose contain some

of his most fanciful, poetic tales;

Hair"

Good and

Poems by W.

The Wind Among

W. B. Yeats, New York, 1911,


permission of the Macmillan Co.

B. Yeats, copyright by

19 '9> PP 206, 207.

By

the Reeds, In the

THE NOBEL

262

PRIZE WINNERS

Seven Woods, The Wild Swans at Coole, and Respon-

These separate

sibilities.

pearing

the

in

(Macmillan).

uniform

now apWorks
his

are

collections

of

edition

Like Keats and William Blake, Mr.

Yeats has been criticized for the lack of human contacts;

he has been accused of more interest

in

sympathy with waves and winds, with trees and

human

lore than with deep

be

seems

rhapsodies.

In reading a love

His Beloved," one


are

to

in

feels that the

more ardent than

lyrical

and

lyric, like

found

were

in

alike in

many moods,

modes of

expression,

parable to

Thomas

upon Shelley

Evil; these two poets


elusive

Mr. Yeats seems

"Nocturne" and

more

active

affect his

lines,

themes and

me com-

to

Bailey Aldrich and such delicate

In these later years

sibilities

One of

in their delicate,

and the fluctuating moods that

into

Poet to

In the exquisite diction of some of his

fancies.

lyrics, as

"A

the passion of love.

Good and

Ideas of

spiritual

dreams and the words

the best interpretive essays ever written


is

fairy-

His absorption

emotions.

emotionally

and

"A Mood."

Mr. Yeats has

life;

he

carried his ideals

has undertaken

other than poetic expression.

He

Responhas been

deeply concerned about the future of Ireland and has

been a member of the Senate of the Irish Free State.

He

has become a leader

as well as literary,

in political

movements.

and educational,

Through

the Daily

W.

B.

YEATS

Express of Dublin, he entered the


against Bernard

Shaw and

"poetry

tained that

panded thought upon


Ireland,

is

263
of combatants

lists

his adherents

who main-

a criticism of life."

In ex-

this idea, in Literary Ideals in

Mr. Yeats has prophesied

that, as the years

pass, the function of poetry as criticism will be dis-

carded; for
of

life,

will be substituted

it,

sometimes

poetry as revelation

forms, more often

in tangible

in

idealistic spirit.

Although Mr. Yeats has accomplished

less creative

writing since the war, which left bruises upon his poet's
soul,

he has not been

of his

idle.

In 1927, he revised pages

"Autobiographies,"

including

Reveries

Childhood, with some happy scenes from

and The Trembling of the

Veil.

The

over

life at Sligo,

next year he

prepared a version of Sophocles' King CEdipus for the

modern

stage.

players, with

More

It

was designed

some passages for

representative of

lection, entitled

him

especially for Dublin


"liturgical singers."

as a poet

"Meditations

in

Time

of Civil

Stair, issued in

War, Nineteen

Hundred and Nineteen," awakens memories of


days.

col-

The Tower, which was published the

same year, 1928, and The Winding


1929.

was the

tragic

CHAPTER

XVII

HONORS TO POLISH FICTION SIENKIEWICZ


(1905),

The

REYMONT

prize of 1905 has been

(1924)

awarded:

November

Sienkiewicz, Henryk, born 1846, died

"because
novels."

of

his

splendid

merits

as

an author of

16,

1916:

historical

As has been noted

in

previous chapters, in the Nobel

prizes in literature, exponents of the same kind of

writing in a country have been honored in successive


generations.

Bjornson

Hamsun, Heyse

Knut

and

and Hauptmann, Echegaray and Benavente, Anatole


France and Rolland, Henryk Sienkiewicz and Ladis-

law Reymont are examples of such awards.


inference

from the
wish

judicators

to

lists

of winners

recognize

the

is

Another

that the ad-

and

aspirations

achievements of small countries that are too often

overlooked

upon

the

map

world

of

literature.

Thus Denmark and Switzerland, Ireland and Belgium


have shared with the so-called
Europe.
nition.
1

Twice has Poland been

The very name

Inscription

great

nations"

of

selected for recog-

suggests struggle and oppres-

with the Nobel Prize


264

Award

in

Literature, 1905.

Copyright, 1912, by Little,

Brown and Company

HENRYK SIENKIEWICZ

HENRYK SIENKIEWICZ
sion on one hand,

in art

and

literature

Some of

idealism.

in

in ultimate right

on

In spite of tragic sadness, the messages of

the other.

Poland

hope and faith

265

have been

vital

and lofty

the melancholy and passionate

yearning of later Poland has been expressed

the

in

poets Michievicz and Slowacki, who are allied in their


moods with Chopin; the u Funeral March" was deu
scribed by Liszt as the murmuring plaint of a whole

nation following the bier of

its

dearest hopes. "

In

his book,

Poland Reborn, with keen analysis of ad-

vance

education and literary opportunities,

in

Devereux

"Henceforward there

Roy

will not be

need

for Polish

Sienkiewicz,

who

belongs

as to Poland, to

says,

men of letters like Henryk


as much to Western Europe

seek the protection of a foreign flag for their literary


labours. "

To

Sienkiewicz came the Nobel award in

1905, a surprise to European

critics

and a blow to

Russian aspirants for the honor.

Born

was

in Lithuania, at

when he

sixty

known by

Wola

Okrzejska,

in

1846, he

received the prize; he was already

He

translation to international readers.

belonged to a patrician family and was educated


the University of

Warsaw

at

until political conditions,

following the revolution of 1863, caused him to leave

Poland for Russia, where he edited a journal


2

Poland Reborn by Roy Devereux, London,

3 Ibid.,
p.

225.

1922, p. 237.

at St.


THE NOBEL

266

He

Petersburg.

he traveled,

so

wanted
in

Southern Europe;

PRIZE WINNERS

in

to

know more

of the world

gypsy or Bohemian fashion,

1876 he came to America,

Angeles, seeking to found there a Polish

He had

wealth of Utopian type.

Common-

written tales and

own Country and From

a Prophet in his

is

Los

pseudonym of "Litwos"

travel sketches under the

Nobody

to

in

Notebook of a Posen. He wrote impressions of


America for a Warsaw newspaper; among these
the

earlier sketches

and "In Tartar Captivity."

the Prairies,"
tale,

were "Janko, the Musician," "Across

"The Old

later

Bell-Ringer," was patriotic and wistful.

In 1880 he returned to Poland where he faced sadness in the death of his wife with the panacea of

upon

his

trilogy of historical

romances of Poland.

For eight years he worked winters


libraries

and

The

mountains.
but

in his study, in

results

strictly historical tales

work

summers

in

in the

Warsaw

at

Carpathian

were the long, imaginative


of

With Fire and Sword, re165 1, The Deluge, from

from 1647 to
1652 to 1657, an d Pan Michael, dealing with the

lating events

Turkish invasion and incidents from 1670 to 1674.

This

cycle of

matic
the

romances showed scholarship and dra-

ability, especially in the first

trilogy.

dialogue
ualized

is

The background

and third
is

natural in most places.

individuals

and

the

Polish

stories of

panoramic;

the

The author

vis-

people,

under

HENRYK SIENKIEWICZ

267

sentiments of distress, fear, love, conflict, and aspira-

The

tion.

qualities of honor, patriotism,

and

faith

are emphasized in these portrayals of Poland, under


successive invasions of Cossacks, Swedes,

He

idealized Poland and gave hope to his people.

Modern Poland was


of

tales,

Without

The former

is

the setting for his next series

Dogma

and Children of the Soil.


pathological and tragic, the diary of

Leon Ploszowski,

and bore, and

aristocrat

for his cousin, Aneila.

The

vices of

and self-indulgent forces are

studied

early

Paganism.
Vadis,

the

modern

society

sharp contrast with

in

with

Christianity

opposing force,

its

Quo

In 1896 he wrote his masterpiece,


u

which has been called

many

his love

For many years he had

the heroes of the trilogy.

In

and Turks.

translations

it

was familiar

Nobel prize was given

to

what similar trend was the

epochal

an

to readers before

author.

its

book."

Of

some-

later brief message,

Us Follow Him, which appeared

in a single

Let

book and

included in the collection of stories and sketches,

is

Hania,

in translations

by C.

Curtin, and Casimir Gonski.

The
show

confessed

how God's

purpose

Dynicwicz, Jeremiah

of

Quo Vadis was

truth, because

conquered pagan might."


this religio-historical
4

W.

novel

The
is

it

is

to

the only Truth,

sustained interest in

not gained by melodrama

Chicago, 1898; Philadelphia, 1898.

THE NOBEL

268

PRIZE WINNERS

or sensational intrigues.

The

It

has breadth and dignity.

characters vary in vividness but

among

the out-

standing photographs are Paul and Petronius, Ursus

and Chilo, and the


tale

"A

He

girl captive, Ligeia.

called the

The

Narrative of the Time of Nero."

back-

ground was convincing but Nero was not successfully


drawn; even such a master of characterization as
Sienkiewicz could not
real

make

the

Roman emperor

modern readers but he introduced

to

vitally

several

dramatic situations that center about his baffling per-

The

sonality.

question of the

title,

"Whither goest

thou?" was asked of the modern world of unrest and


even as

discord,

apostles

it

was asked

in

the

days of the

the author felt the need of guides of to-day to

hold up the banner of faith and service.

Sympathy and
alone in

by

spirituality

Quo Vadis

but

in

were

qualities found, not

many other works

in fiction

Knights of the Cross, recount-

this Polish writer.

ing the struggle between the Poles and Lithuanians


against the Teutons,

is

a favorite with

many

readers.

After Bread: a Story of Polish Emigrant Life in


America (also entitled, For Daily Bread and Peasants
in Exile)

the

On

typical of his tales of emigration.

Field of Glory

Vienna.
lish

is

Few

celebrates

Sobieski's

rescue

authors have been so fortunate

translators

as

this

Polish

novelist.

in

of

Eng-

Jeremiah

Curtin, S. A. Binion, and S. C. de Soissons are

among

LADISLAW STANISLAW REYMONT


known; they have given

the best

interpretations

fine

and such

to his historical trilogy, his religious novel,

other stories as

On

the Field of Glory,

On

the Bright

Shore, In Desert and Wilderness, That Third

productive, ever exemplifying the


criticism

good

word

that he used in

"The novel should strengthen

of Zola,

not undermine

life,

Woman,

Sienkiewicz lived until 19 16, alert and

and In Vain.

269

it;

ennoble

not defile

it,

bring

it;

tidings, not evil."

Ladislaw Stanislaw Reymont


The

To
"For

prize of 1924 has been

awarded:

Reymont, Ladislaw, born 1868, died December


his great epic,

5,

1925:

The Peasants?

Again, a new generation has come "to hold the


candle to light the dark corners of the earth" in Poland,

since

historical

Henryk Sienkiewicz wrote


and

religious

authors had come forward,

known
better

land"

outside

known
is

their

in

racial

confines.

whom

the

Award

the

"Young PoNobel prize


this

award

a translation of the

part of the four-volume novel,

Inscription with the Nobel Prize

scarcely

Among

few weeks before

was made public there appeared


first

new group of

of the representatives of

1924.

novels of

many of them

Ladislaw Reymont to

was given

potency.

his

The Peasants by

in 1924.


THE NOBEL

270

Autumn (Knopf, New York,


The translator was Michael H. Dziewicki,

Reymont, with the


1925).

PRIZE WINNERS

title,

Professor of English Literature at the University of

the

The book

meager

attention until

Nobel prize was announced; then

a furor of in-

Cracow.

was aroused

terest

appear

Reymont had
publicity.

in this first

Winter,

then

since

visited

He

attracted

volume and those to

Spring,

and Summer.

America twice but escaped much

had been translated

into

English as

author of The Comedienne (1920), the tale of a

who sought

to be beautiful

but ended in "philisticism."

had been included

Oxford

the

(1921).

in

extract

and famous on the stage

Some of

his short stories

a collection of Polish tales, in

University

An

girl

from

Promised Land, was used

of

series

World

Classics

his industrial novel,

in the

The

Anthology of Modern

Slavonic Literature, edited by Paul Selver, in 192 1.

He

has written more than a score of novels, and

well

known and commended

parisons

to

Sienkiewicz

more dramatic vigor

reveal

like that

of

in

Germany.

more

pictorial

Dumas,

is

Comskill,

in the older

writer, but a realistic force of surpassing effects in Rey-

mont.

His family was of the lower middle

class.

His

father was a windmill owner in Kobiala Wielka, then


in

Russian Poland, where the author was born in 1868.

He

went to the village school and attended to the

cattle

LADISLAW STANISLAW REYMONT


One

and farm work.


to

of the interpreters of

Americans has been Rupert Hughes;

lation of his Preface to the

we

Peasants

read, 6

German

He

in the trans-

The

to be the epic

in

is,

Reymont

edition of

"Reymont was born

poet of the Polish village.

271

spite

of his

foreign name, a child of that strange, uncouth world

where he began

among goose boys and cow-

his life

herders, where he drove the herds of his father, the


village organist,

and whence he has climbed to the

rank of a beloved and recognized poet, spending a


large part of his life in Paris, the centre of

Reymont attended some of

culture."

or

High

Schools, but he

demand not
pelled.

was

modern

the gymnasiums,

defiant to the Russian

to speak in Polish;

sometimes he was

ex-

Reymont

ex-

Several trades and occupations gave


periences which Ee has used in

He was

some of

his fiction.

a clerk in a store, railway employee, telegraph

operator, and longed to travel like the hero of

Dreamer.

For

a time he

pany whose

reflections are

and

He

Lilly.

was actor
found

in

Land, with scenes

laid at

30,

1924.

The Comedienne
The Promised

Lotz and indications of

By permission of Rupert Hughes.


Interview with Dr. A. M. Nawench in

November

small com-

was, also, a novitiate with the Paulist

Fathers for a time at Czenstochowa.

in a

The

New

re-

York Times Review,

THE NOBEL

272

PRIZE WINNERS
and landowners (on the

volt against the capitalists

of the

part

agrarian

proletariat)

was

forerunner of his

The

The Peasants.

novel,

book

earlier

has been compared with Zola's Germinal

in

intense

The Peasants, Rey-

naturalism.

In this long story,

mont became

the "mouthpiece of the peasant and rural

Combined with Reymont's devotion

elements. "

the peasant village as "protagonist,"

Nature

in

is

his passion for

her varied aspects; hence he made his

sions of the

book

to

show

divi-

Like

the four seasons.

Thomas Hardy and George Meredith

to

he uses Nature

as a vital personality in his story, aiding or restrain-

ing the development of his leading characters, especially

Yagna, who has been called "a Polish Tess."

The English author

superior in condensation and

is

dramatic sympathy.

To

use the Polish peasant as literary material

exclusive trait of

is

no

Reymont; he has been portrayed by

other writers like Ladislaw Orkan, Jan Kasprowicz,

and Stanislaw Prybyszewsski.


slow movement
like the

Kuba,
in

is

In

The Peasants

the

varied by scenes of intense emotion,

marriage festival

in

Autumn, or

like the passionate quest of

Winter, and the bitter

fight

the death of

Yagna and Antek

between father and son,

husband and lover of Yagna, or the

tragic,

gruesome

scene of the death of the father, old Boryna, in the


last

pages of Spring.

The mob-attack upon Yagna,

LADISLAW STANISLAW REYMONT


at the close of

Summer,

grips the reader and

makes

In addition to

a strong climax to the epical story.


specific,

273

haunting situations, there are interwoven cus-

toms and legends and

wonderful collection of Polish

proverbs (a mine of literature!).

Passions of love

and hate and revenge, the constant excess of vodka and


clouded minds, fear of landlord and slumbering revolt
against the loss of forest lands and oncoming industrial

domination

such are significant factors in this

panoramic novel.
of the

soil,

In the background

is

the dull color

the rank smells and fragrant odors of farm-

yards and woods, sunsets of splendor, and terrifying

One

storms.

of the most poetic, idealistic passages

Autumn, the passing of

the last chapter in


faithful

Kuba, after

is

the soul of

long years of service and keen

his

suffering:

And
till

it

higher yet

Where

only fragrant

of flowers in

comes never

Many

at all

roll

yea,

things that breathe

lilies

exhale balmy odours, where fields

over beds of a million hues

air;

where night

passages

Anglo-Saxon

all

bloom waft honey-sweet scents athwart the

u here starry rivers

in

aesthetic

this

novel

tastes,

The Peasants: Autumn from


York, 1924. By permission

New

can hear no longer the voice of lamentation, nor

mournful discords of

the

and higher, yet higher, higher

set its feet

Where man

flew,

it

if

are

one

repugnant to
is

the Polish of Ladislaw


of Alfred A. Knopf.

unable
St.

to

Reymont,

THE NOBEL

274

assimilate the

of the

WINNERS

raw sordidness of many modern

stories

with the passages of emotional vigor and

soil,

Reymont has

poetic beauties.

form, the

PRIZE

revealed, in panoramic

of the Polish peasant, typified in the

life

family and associates of Boryna; he has treated his


big theme with psychological insight, realistic photog-

raphy,

and robust idealism.

The

first

and second

volumes seem more spontaneous and dramatic than


the

He

later.

An

lacks

condensation and incisiveness.

excellent review of the four

volumes by Vida Scud-

The Atlantic Monthly, August, 1925.


Reymont knows America far better than Americans

der

is in

know him

or his books, but the discrepancy

He

remedied.
affairs

and

enjoys friendship with

letters

here,

including

is

being

many men

of

Rupert Hughes,

What Will People Say? has been translated by Mme. Reymont, a fine linguist, and published
serially in the Warsaw Gazeta.
Many critics have
noted the sincerity of Reymont as man and artist.
whose

story,

In Chapter III, "Naturalism and Nationalism," of


the collected lectures, on

by

Roman

fiction,

Polish Literature,

Dyboski, Professor at Cracow University, 9

there are interesting

work and

Modern

his

comments upon Reymont's

tendencies.

His attempt

at

earlier

historical

following the lead of Sienkiewicz, was re-

Given at King's College; Oxford University Press, 1924.


mission of Oxford University Press.

By

per-

LADISLAW STANISLAW REYMONT


corded

in

The Year IJQ4 but

275

was, says Professor

it

Dyboski, a failure, the "bewildering mass of details

More

obscured the outlines of the historical picture."

adapted to his analytical

skill

are the earlier novels,

Ferments and The Dreamer (largely autobiographical


in

background), and the

later,

more impersonal

tales

The

that deal with anarchists and political conditions,

Vampire and Opium Smokers.

Like

other

critics

Professor Dyboski ranks Stephen Zeromski as "su-

preme

in the Polish

novel today."

He

to Sienkiewicz; he has the dramatic

centration which
cial

pessimist"

writer at

first,

themes, like
recently

of

Reymont

u
is

a so-

he was a short-story

then turned to history for fictional

Lay of

the

Leader and has written more

contemporaneous conditions.

faults of diffuseness

mont

power and con-

Zeromski

lacks.

like Sienkiewicz

compares him

With

his

and unevenness of structure, Rey-

gifted in depicting the small and large interests

is

of the Polish peasant, in revealing their aspirations

and dormant passion for freedom.

As an example of "the novel

of the soil," so close

to earth that the reader often finds his senses are keen

and that other

faculties are almost

dormant,

this epic

by Reymont proclaims him a masterful interpreter of


peasant
terest

life.

and

In every volume there are lapses of


diffuseness.

many monotonous pages

In retrospect, however,
will be forgotten

in-

the

and the out-

THE NOBEL

276

PRIZE WINNERS

standing scenes of passionate love, hatred, suffering,

and primitive ecstasy


utes

to

among

this

second

will

memory as tribnovelist who is listed

remain

Polish

in

the Nobel prize winners in literature.

CHAPTER

XVIII

GEORGE BERNARD SHAW: DRAMATIST,


SATIRIST AND PROPHET
The

prize for 1925 has been

awarded:

Shaw, George Bernard, born July 26, 1856: "for his literary
is characterized both by idealism and by humanity,
and whose lively satire is frequently associated with peculiar

work, which

poetic beauty."

In the "jubilee year," a quarter-century after the


first

Nobel awards were made, the winner

was George Bernard Shaw,

The

first

reaction

of surprise.

among

Irish wit

in literature

and playwright.

international critics

was that

Only three years before the prize had

been given to William Butler Yeats, the poet-dramatist


of Ireland.

It

seemed unlikely that

again so soon to Great Britain;

if it

it

would come

should, the general

expectation favored the choice of the "grand old

of English fiction,"

Meantime,

Thomas Hardy.

week passed and no reply was received

from Shaw, regarding acceptance of the


rumors were

rife that

prize,

and

he would decline both the honor

and the money award.


1

man

Inscription with the Nobel Prize

277

note

Award,

of

irritation

in Literature, 1925.

was

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

278

sounded

News)

in

some journals; Dageris Nyheter (Daily

of Stockholm reproached him for the delay,

with this ironic surmise: "As has happened on occasions before, he could not resist the temptation of
striking an attitude

and gaining the reputation of inde-

pendence and originality, even to the point of declining


vanity's

mark of

distinction

crowned to immortality.

and preferring to go un-

When

man

has coquetted

with his originality a lifetime, logic and consistency

demand

that he play the part to the end."

London

In a different tone of interpretation, the

correspondent of Svenska Dagbladet (Swedish Daily)


asserts

"the truth

is

that

Shaw has employed

his

absence from town to consider, with the same seriousness

and

intellectual

honesty that he bestows upon

human problems, whether he


not.

It is

shall accept the prize or

probable that, from both personal friends

and friends of the international

institution,

pressure

has been brought to bear to avoid the calamity of the


first

refusal in the history of the prize in literature."

The

ultimate decision by

Mr. Shaw

to accept the

(although he said he had "renown greater than


for his spiritual health"), and his

money be used
standing
British

Isles,"

is

good

request that the

to "encourage intercourse

in literature

honor

and under-

and art between Sweden and the

were most favorably received.

The

same journal now declared that Shaw "had added yet

GEORGE BERNARD SHAW


another laurel to his

many

279

successes, that of the per-

fect diplomat."

Per Hallstrom, speaking for the Nobel Foundation,

making the award, declared that Shaw, from

in

his

youth, "had evinced the same attitude towards society

Nothing can better

that he has ever since cultivated.

defend him against current accusations of lack of


honesty and professional buffoonery at the court of

His ideas have been those of

democracy.

somewhat

from new, but gaining

abstract, logical radicalism, far

with him new keenness and lustre.

They

unite, with

ready cleverness, a thorough lack of respect for

all

convention, the merriest humor, and an audaciousness


that has hardly appeared before in literature."
Skeptics

among

critics

refused to accept "idealism"

as one of his traits, despite the

The same
awards,
sun.

of

In defense, one

life,

words

in the citation.

questions had been raised in other recent

like those to

Preface to

"Man

Anatole France and Knut

may

recall

Ham-

words from Shaw's

and Superman" "This


:

is

the true joy

the being used for a purpose recognized by your-

self as a

mighty one the being thoroughly worn out be-

fore you are

thrown on the scrap-heap the being a force

of nature, instead of a feverish,

selfish, little

clod of

ments and grievances, complaining that the world


2

Extracts loaned by American-Scandinavian Foundation.

lation by Miss Anna C. Reque.

ail-

will

Trans-

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

280

not devote itself to making you happy. "

may

of idealism

the Prefaces,

if

be found

in

many

and of

lines of text

one has discrimination to

grammatic from the

Such notes

sift

the epi-

There are many

discursive.

vital

words that haunt readers of such psychological plays

"Mrs.

"Candida, "

as

"Major Barbara."

Warren's

The

last

tellectually honest creeds"

To
which

is

anathema

a strong plea for "in-

is

about poverty and industry.

dwell unduly upon

quality of Shaw's plays

the

would seem

to him,

or sermonic

idealism

sentimentalism,

like

"Arms and
and "You Never Can

emphasized

in

Man," "Fanny's First Play,"


Tell." Primarily, Shaw is a satirist; he laughs
the

at

laughs with humanity, often with an acrid wit.

Palmer,

in his brief study,

the occasion of wit in others.

Bernard Shaw

in

and

John

Bernard Shaw: Harlequin

(1915), affirmed: "Shaw

or Patriot

and

Profession,"

is

wit

and

Pronounce the name of

almost any company and immediately

every one perks up with an epigram or a paradox or an

Cosmo Hamilton,

anecdote."

recounting to the author

of this book some reminiscences of Shaw, stressed his


kindly
jarvis

jocose

humor

who

as well as his wit

"like that of

the

drives a jaunting car in Dublin, carrying on

remarks

and

exchange

of

epigrams

with

passers-by."

Archibald

Henderson,

an

earlier

and exhaustive

biographer, found his task one of baffling, circuitous

GEORGE BERNARD SHAW


He

trails.

course of a

my

of

Shaw

"One who has pursued the errant


will-o'-the-wisp may understand somewhat
says:

effort to follow the devious route of G.B.S.

many-sided

is

his

created his

"When

He

world of

I talk seriously

own "myth

I joke,

they

call

his seriousness;

about

me

rushes
a

of G.B.S."

my

mask and

he complains,

work, people laugh;

a prophet."

has added spicy comments to the facts of his

early childhood.

was the

Born

in

Dublin, July 26, 1856, he

third child and only son of

George Carr Shaw,

son of a notary and stockbroker.

The

father was

"always harping upon his gentlemanly birth," a

which the son detested.


his

Complex and

and, in later years, struggled to remove the


to convince the

as his varied photog-

personality,

He

testify.

from one task to another, with

almost frenzied activity."

feverish,

raphers

He

the quintessence of vital energy.

is

hither and thither

when

281

Lack of

ability to

trait

provide for

family was evidenced in several futile schemes.

From

his father,

however, the son inherited a sense of

humor, "an appreciation of the comic force of


climax."

anti-

His mother, twenty years younger than her husband,

was Lucinda Elizabeth Gurley, daughter of


gentleman of Carlow.
3

191

She was a real musician and

George Bernard Shaw; His Life and Works,


1, p. x.

By

* Ibid., p. 6.

a country

permission of D. Appleton

&

Co.

Critical Biography,

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

282

found, in her music, solace for

her married

The

life.

many disappointments

influence of

in

George John Van-

deleur Lee, a teacher of music, was strong upon both

mother and her son who showed,

the

in his

boyhood,

His

music as well as his independence.

his love of

mother went to London to organize opera companies


and concert-programs; she was
certain public schools of

age of seventy.

London

Possibly,

a teacher of music in
until she

some of

was past the

his mother's quali-

are reflected in "Candida" but there are others

ties

more pronounced

Can

in

Mrs. Clandon of "You Never

Tell."

With

typical satire,

George Bernard Shaw

recalls his

school days in which "he took refuge in total idleness


.

most wasted and mischievous part of

the

His

life."

was one of

his

uncle, the vicar of St. Bride's in Dublin,


his teachers

and they "struggled with Latin

grammar."

Later, he was a pupil at Wesleyan School,

now Wesley

College

ended for him


five

years after

fell

ciency and a
ship.

He

until he

Stephen's Green.

The

at fourteen.

he was

Charles Townsend.
of sixteen

in

next year

and

for

a clerk in the land-office of

Unusual

upon him.

School days

responsibilities for a lad

He

gained exactness,

good handwriting from

effi-

this apprentice-

lived in lodgings with his father in Dublin

was impelled

to follow his

"London imperatively beckoned."

mother and

sister:

GEORGE BERNARD SHAW


During the nine
passed through

from 1876

years,

many

to

283

1885,

Shaw

experiences; he was often chal-

lenged by baffled aspirations, hard work and meagre

He

returns.
result,

Henderson that "the net

told Archibald

was nine pounds."

financially,

Manuscripts

were being sent and being returned, while he was writing and living on nuts and cereals.

He

studied social

problems with a sardonic grin and undaunted courage;


he wrote novels which he called later "five remote
products of
said of the
rats

my

nonage. "

first story,

were able to

"It

In a

mood

of humor, he

was so bad that not even the

finish it."

In later years there has been revived interest in these


novels by Shaw, especially

The

Irrational Knot,

Love

among the Artists, and Cashel Byron's Profession,


The last has been dramatized and staged. Romanticism

was

outlet for

a keynote in these novels yet they

some of

social questions.

his theories

about economic and

Stevenson wrote to William Archer,

after reading Cashel Byron's Profession:

mad, mad and

in his

The

Walter

in little bits

heart he thinks he

solid granite realism."

Scott's or

of Socialism
is

labouring

is

all

107.

Dumas's, and

and
in a

In an interview for

Letters of Robert Louis Stevenson to His

1899, Vol. II, p.

"It

deliciously delightful; the author has a

taste in chivalry like

then he daubs

were the

believe

quarry of

The Chap-

Family and Friends,

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

284

Book, November, 1896, Shaw said of


u

his life:

My

destiny

neither studied
to the

common

my

was

to educate

pupil nor related

this

London

my

had

human knowledge."
came for him when William Archer

stock of

turning point

Mall Gazette;

Edmund

but

in

ideas properly

got him an appointment on the reviewing


Pall

period

later he

Yates, and

The

staff

of the

was on The World, under

Star.

He

wrote criticism of

music, drama, art, and discussed social and economic


questions.

Shorter,

showed

He gained influential friends like Clement


W. E. Henley, and William Morris. He

influences of Karl

Marx, Sidney Webb, Annie

Besant and Henry George in his writings on social


themes.

He

lessons, until

learned to speak in public, after

he spoke every week

in a

difficult

year for the

Fabian Society before he edited Fabian Essays


Socialism, in 1889.

When

in

Fabian Socialism became

a mild forerunner of later radical doctrines, he said,


"I, the Socialist,

only

change.

am no

ridiculous
It puts the

longer a

fellow.

Red

Good!

Spectre.
I

am

embrace the

world with me."

In his speeches and his essays, as well as in the


novels which reflected his interest in art, music, and
social economics,

he displayed that egotism for which

he has been so often ridiculed and caricatured.


cartoons in

Under

(See

The Review of Reviews, January, 1927.)

a cartoon by

Max

Beerbohn

is

written,

Mag-

Courtesy Brentano's, Inc.

GEORGE BERNARD SHAW

GEORGE BERNARD SHAW

he has the power to infect almost everyone, with

netic,

the delight that he takes in himself."

egotism
is

285

is

Much

of this

another form of his distinctive humor.

It

audacious and original "self-puffery," with a wit's

delight in teasing people

who

lack a sense of humor.

This peculiar self-consciousness, the mask of "G.B.S.,"

was carried on to

arguments.

his plays with

familiar sample

more

found

is

controversial

Preface

in the

Three Plays for Puritans where he refutes the

to

charge that he

"charlatan" because he explains and

is

prefixes; with caustic

answer he writes (pp.

"The reason most dramatists do not


with prefaces

is

xxi-xxii)

publish their plays

that they cannot write them, the busi-

ness of intellectually conscious philosopher and skilled


critic

being no part of the playwright's craft.

what

say

me when

is,

why

should

get another

can praise myself?

man

have no

Now

to praise

disabilities

me your best critic, and I will criticize his head off. As to philosophy, I taught my critics
the little they know in my Quintessence of Ibsenism;
and now they turn their guns the guns I loaded for
to plead; produce

them

had

on me, and proclaim

intellect

grates

who was

distinction

hauer,
6

without
it

will,

that

write as

By permission

mankind

or heart, as they call

it.

In-

that directed your attention to the

between Will and Intellect?

I think,

if

but Shaw."
of Brentano's,

It is in this

Not Schopensame Preface

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

286

that he recalls
British public

how he first caught


when speaking from

the ear
a

cart

of the

Hyde

in

Park, to the blaring of brass bands, and declares of


himself, "I

am

moves the reader

duced by

his

would

effects" are pro-

daring originality and egoistic wit.

William Archer,

in

1892, was his

in collaboration

with

initial success at play-

Socialists exulted in this exposure of the hypo-

landlord

critical

that, possibly,

Such "comic

his plays.

"Widowers* Houses," written

writing.

even

to echo his wish that Shakespeare

might have written some prefaces


have eclipsed

He

a natural-born mountebank."

in

the slums and the complications of

The

money and matrimony.

publication, in 1898, of

two volumes of Plays, Pleasant and Unpleasant


lished the reputation of

Shaw

estab-

as a wit, a satirist, a

philosopher of daring ideas, and a master hand at stage


revealed in such plays as

technic,

as

derer,"

"Mrs.

Warren's

"The

Profession,"

Philan-

"Candida,"

"Arms and the Man," "The Man of Destiny," and


"You Never Can Tell." Three years later appeared
Three Plays for Puritans "The Devil's Disciple,"

"Caesar and Cleopatra," and "Captain Brassbound's

Conversion."

"The

Devil's

In

the

character

Disciple,"

haunting individual

of

Dick Dudgeon,

Shaw produced

who became

mock-heroism

and

unique,

heroic in defiance of

Puritanism which could be cruel to children,


of

sentimentalism.

in defiance

With

the

GEORGE BERNARD SHAW

287

some

cynicism and philosophy are mingled

excellent

characterizations like that of Anderson, the minister,

"Caesar and Cleopatra" car-

and General Burgoyne.


iconoclasm

ried

Destiny";
tler,

his

Man

"The

than

farther

yet

speeches of the childish prat-

in places the

Cleopatra, are both wearisome and farcical.

model of "setting forth Caesar

he suggests that he

is

of

modern

in the

For

light,"

only taking "the same liberty

with Shakespear as he with

Homer,"

that he

makes

no pretensions to "express the Mommsenite view of


Caesar any better than Shakespear expressed a view

which was not even Plutarchian."

"Man
its

and Superman" was well acted

in

1905 but

length and diffuseness have discouraged stage pres-

entation.

It

illustrates

the

later

tendency of

the

dramatist to write long paragraphs of dialogue, with

minimum of dramatic

Like "John Bull's

action.

Other Island," that appeared the same year,


and Superman"

is

"drama of ideas"

Tanner's struggle for freedom


Life Force," represented in

been

called

fittingly

which John

overcome by "the

is

Ann

in

"Man

Whitefield.

"A New

Fall

of

It

has

Man."

"Major Barbara," with a challenging "Essay as First


Aid to Critics," and "Fanny's First Play" are among
the later satirical and somewhat sermonic plays. With
7

The

reference

is

to

Mommsen's History

of

of this book.
8

Bernard Shaw by Holbrook Jackson,

1907.

Rome.

See Chapter III

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

288

vehemence the author contends against poverty "as

wholesome

tonic for lazy people," using the character

of Undershaft, in
his theories

there

is

morality,"

"Major Barbara,"

spokesman for

In "Fanny's First Play"

about money.

rebuke to smugness,

vigorous
to

as

"mere

to

"dead people walking about ...

dead as mutton."

The

as

situations in this play, however,

are deftly conceived and the dramatic values are not

submerged beneath the

By

intellectual arguments.

contrast with these

more

serious satires,

Shaw

has written a group of lighter plays which have been

popular with colleges and amateur dramatic groups,


as

well

as

among

professional

"Androcles and the Lion," subtitled

"Pygmalion," with

its

droll scenes

Such

actors.

"A

Fable Play,"

and travesty upon

modern quackery, and

its

of

and "Back to Methuselah,

inspired

follies,"

key sentence, "Life

Metabiological Pentateuch."

are

is a

series

"Captain Brassbound's

Conversion," although of earlier date,

is

a delightful

play of adventure with some brilliant repartee on the

part of

Lady

Cecily.

In America, the popularity of

Bernard Shaw's plays on the stage dates from 1897,

when Richard Mansfield played


Disciple" and

"Arms and

the

so ably in

Man."

the

witness two or

more

Devil's

It

has been

many

seasons in

plays by

Shaw on

sustained, with cumulative force, until

New York

"The

programs of the Theatre Guild or other play-

GEORGE BERNARD SHAW


The

houses.

"Candida" by Kath-

interpretation of

erine Cornell will linger in

289

memory.

dramas

In the

which introduce American characters the author shows


his

mistaken ideas of our past and present.

Henderson: "So from time


ing

spectacle

of

to time

we have

Says

Mr.

the divert-

and shrewd

remarkably clever

Irishman making quaintly stupid and delightfully

in-

appropriate strictures upon a country he has never


visited

and upon

among whom he has never

a people

He

lived or even sojourned. "

has no desire to

visit

America; he considers the country "overridden with


old-fashioned creeds and capitalistic religion," says his

biographer.

Perhaps some of

his

apparent strictures

are only examples of his daring wit,

newspaper comment accredited to him

recent

do not want

New York

to see the Statue of Liberty in

Even my

like

Harbor.

appetite for irony does not go so far as that."

Bernard Shaw was a pronounced anti-romanticist


before the word and
standing marks of

announced

its

application

modern

fiction

had become

out-

He

thus

and drama.

his defiance to conventional orthodoxy, in

varied forms, in such early plays as "Candida," "Mrs.

Warren's Profession," "Arms and the


given

it

stronger expression

in his

Man";

he has

plays with historical

"The Man of Destiny," "Caesar and Cleopatra," and "Saint Joan."


The first two faced vehement criticism from many sources; Mr. Mencken
setting, like

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

2 9o

and Cleopatra has been the football

says, "Caesar

an immense number of sanguinary rushes. "

in

There

has been more consensus of appreciation for "Saint

Joan."

It

seems to register, for the author, posses-

Nobel

sion of those qualities that are listed in the


citation

"idealism

and humanity

lively

associated with peculiar poetic beauty."

mination of his

skill

is

the cul-

as playwright as well as his insight

Joan

into character.

It

satire

is

with medieval belief in

visualized as a rural peasant,

God and

Shaw has

the saints.

shown her magnetism among the populace and


diery, her
this

knowledge of military

To

tactics.

heroine interpreted by Sybil Thorndike

sol-

have seen
is

to have

realized the spell of great drama.

In his revolt against romanticism,

Shaw

uses methods

of satire that sometimes verge upon invective

he chal-

lenges by extreme statement and braggadocio, as in his


familiar

comments upon Shakespeare.

ponent of the
cian; he

free, creative

would

pull

"His main tenet

Deacon

The

in the

false

An

ideas

and

illusions.

M.

10
study of Shaw's art and philosophy.

which

between individual
is

wills.

Exposition of Shavianism, 1910.

wills

continually threatening

George Bernard Shaiv: His Plays, by H.

10

the ex-

the sanctity of life," says Renee

social system,

freedom of

is

mind, not of the academi-

conflicts in his plays are

and the

is

down

He

L.

Mencken,

1905.

GEORGE BERNARD SHAW


Such

291

when

the underlying motive in "Candida,"

is

Marchbanks, changing suddenly and convincingly from


a

lovesick

boy poet to a man,

egoistic husband,

and

defies

"Do you

asks,

Morrell, the

think a woman's

soul can live on your talent for preaching ?"

the key thought in

The

orthodoxy that
the daughter,

is
is

is

"Mrs. Warren's Profession," the

much censorship and prudish

play that has endured


misconceptions.

Such

must

reader

hypocritical

between

decide

and heterodoxy.

at first curious

Vivie,

and then rebellious

against her mother's seeming respectability and the


social standards

"If

which permit such conditions; she

had been you, mother,

did but

says,

might have done as you

should not have lived one

life

and believed

another."
In the form of comedy,

"Arms and

Man"

the

forceful rebuke to "romantic tomfoolery"

and

mental hero-worship of military uniforms.

It

register

of

sentiment

prophet-playwright

against

many

world peace had become

war,

is

senti-

was a

made by

this

years before the agitation for


vital.

to interpret the later play,

To

critics

who

"The Apple Cart,"

sought
as "a

blasphemy against Democracy," the author has much


to say in his Preface to this popular drama.

who saw

it

Those

staged were amused and entertained more

than puzzled by any serious question of


(It has a fitting subtitle,

"A

Political

its

meaning;

Extravaganza.")

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

292
It

belongs on the

list

failure of both the


rulers,

is

developed

clever dialogue.

of Shaw's satiric comedies; the

King and the Prime Minister, as


of droll situations and

in a series

There

is

discussion, both in the text

and the Preface, of what Government

really can do,

with a sentence of emphasis on the latter; "Democracy,

government by the people;

then, cannot be

it

can only

be government by consent of the governed" (p. xxii).

For further exposition of

his ideas

on

theme he

this

refers the reader of the play to his book, Intelligent

Woman's Guide

to Socialism

and Capitalism, where he

seeks to solve two problems of Democracy.

In this Preface to

of general

"The Apple Cart"

comment and

Shaw's plays.

a sentence

is

significance for the student of

After revealing

possibilities in

Boanerges of "the Cabinet," who

may seem

Mr.

Bill

only a cari-

cature to call forth a laugh, he says: "In short, those


critics

of mine

who have

taken

The Apple Cart

a story of a struggle between a hero

guys have been grossly taken


take

my

in.

It

in

11 P. xi.

it

ends in

to them,

and

1X

Bernard Shaw has been praised

original ideas, he has refuted the

am

never safe to

them only what you bring

so getting nothing for your money."

"I

is

a roomful of

plays at their suburban face value;

your finding

When

and

for

for

his

honor and declared,

an expert picker of other men's brains and


By permission

of Brentano's.

GEORGE BERNARD SHAW


have been very fortunate

in

my

provocative

quality

Paradox and

friends."

enigma are words often applied to

293

more often challenging than

is

impressions of Soviet Russia.

definite, as in his

The

his writing.

Nerv-

ous and alert in movement, with a smile that seems to

have a suggestion of a stinging word, he embodies, to


those

who know him

heart.

He

sincere

workers

is

best, kindliness

and generosity of

never too busy to help and encourage

any

in

of craft or art.

field

In his

home he is a brilliant host. His wife, whom he married when he was forty, is a woman of mental breadth
and balance who gives a tone of graciousness to the
household.

The enigmas and seeming paradoxes


have been discussed, with true
in

Shaw."

on

essay

his

12

He

"The

insight,

Irish

He

English points of view.

writings

by Ernest Boyd

Protestant:

Shaw from

studies

in his

Bernard

the Irish and the

refutes the suggestion by

Gilbert K. Chesterton "as to Shaw's narrow, puritan

home."

He

asserts that Shaw's "escape to

London"

brought to him more freedom of thought and an

air

of impartiality which he might not have sustained had

he remained
patriotic

in

Ireland

sentiment,

"He

but

is

will

unmoved by appeals
flatter

according as his reason dictates. 13


12

Appreciations and Depreciations, 1918.

13 Ibid.,
p. 106.

or

He

to

antagonize
is

no more

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

294

capable than his ancestral

Orangeman

country right or wrong.'

by

Mr. Boyd

cites

bound

contemporary Irish

in

merely the impatiently tolerated

is

of a community in which he

is

a stranger."

life,

satirist

This

criti-

echoed by other students of Shaw's influence.

In contrast to these reservations by


the

illustration,

the

most powerful force

is

England

War." Under normal cirMr. Boyd, Shaw "might have been

cumstances, thinks

whereas he

As

to

and analyzes Shaw's pronouncement,

"Commonsense about

cism

is

of the head, not of the heart."

ties

the

He

'My

of crying,

enthusiastic

Augustin

Mr. Boyd

words of the French

Hamon

14

who

affirms

u
:

Shaw

are

M.

lecturer,
is

not merely

the profoundest of philosophers, the most trenchant of

humorists and the greatest of moralists, but he


a dramatist of genius.

Of

modern."
has

made

He

classical,

is

his future rank,

this credible

is

also

medieval and

William Lyon Phelps

forecast: "Students of social

history will be compelled to study Shaw's plays, and

those

who

love the pure art of literature will not be

able to leave

them alone."

15

As

a final note of ideal-

ism from this dramatist of daring, pungent wit,

is

his

confession to his biographer, Archibald Henderson:


u
Life is no brief candle for me. It is a sort of splen-

did torch, which


14

Le Moliire du

15

Essays on

XX

Modem

have got hold of for the moment;


siecle:

Bernard Shaw,

Dramatists; 1921,

p. 135.

The Macmillan Co.

GEORGE BERNARD SHAW


and

want to make

fore handing

it

it

295

burn as brightly as possible be-

on to future generations."

Bernard Shaw, by Frank Harris, 17

is

16

a sharp

and

radical analysis of personality and influence.


16

Henderson, op.

cit.,

p. 503.

pany.
17

Simon & Shuster,

1931,

By

permission of D. Appleton

& Com-

CHAPTER XIX
GRAZIA DELEDDA AND HER STORIES OF
SARDINIA
The

prize of 1926 has been awarded:

Deledda, Grazia

(Italian:

works are inspired by high


native
painter,

island,

born

Sardinian)

ideals,

in

1875: "whose

her descriptions of her

which are rendered with the vividness of a

and who has treated general human problems with

depth and sympathy."

For the second time

in twenty-six

prize in literature was given to a

years the Nobel

woman.

In 1909,

Selma Lagerlof had been the laureate, as photographer


of her native country;

who preserved

now

the winner

was

woman

the legends, customs and characters of

her birthland, as her contribution to world literature.

Grazia Deledda was the second Italian to receive the


prize, the other
ducci, in 1906.

winner being the aged poet, Giosue Car-

Rumors

are

still

heard

in

Rome

that,

for

two years before the Sardinian writer was chosen,

she

had been

a favorite

among

the judges in Stock-

1 Inscription with the Nobel Prize Award, in Literature,


The
1926.
author is indebted to Grazia Deledda for her friendly interest in the
researches and translations of her work that were made for this
chapter by Mr. and Mrs. Grove Haines, in Rome during the winter

of 1930.

296

GRAZIA DELEDDA
holm, for her

has been widely read

fiction

To

navian translations.

countries, however, she

award gave

297
in Scandi-

the general readers in other

was not well known

until her

a revival of interest in her personality

and

writings.

By

"The Mother" is the title of one


most admired poems by Carducci and, also, the

a coincidence

of the
title

of the most familiar, most highly rated novel by

The American

Grazia Deledda.
with The

Mother

as

title,

is

translated by

Steegmann; the English edition

and the

Priest.

It

is

edition of this story,

is

called

a tragic tale of

Mary

The

G.

Woman

mother love and

religious devotion in conflict with a son's love for an-

other

woman.

The birthplace
very many of her

of Grazia Deledda, Nuoro, lives in


tales.

Her

father was educated for

the law but became an agriculturist and merchant; he

was three times mayor of the town.


wrote extemporaneous verse.

To

this

He

frequently

home, as the

novelist has told Stanis Ruinas, in a "Conversation,"

came many
bishop
library.

who

classes

farmers, priests, artists, and a

left to the

Deledda family

his good-sized

She was given education beyond that of most

Sardinian girls; she had lessons in Italian from a professor in the ginnasio (high school)

and he advised her

to publish the compositions which she wrote for him.


2

La Sardegna

suoi scrittori,

Stanis Ruinas,

Rome, pp.

53-54.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

298

Her

impulse to read came at eight years when a

first

book was given to her

or

twelve years, she received from the

at

Rome,

When,

acquired by her.

Tribuna of

payment for her

a check for fifty lire, in

first

more

narrative, her family granted her request for

education.

With

frankness, the novelist says, in this "Conversa-

tion," "Since childhood I

fear that otherwise


for example,

that I

was

when

was twenty."

my

age for

should not be taken seriously;

was thirteen years of age

sixteen;

have augmented

when

She was

was

in

said

sixteen, I said that I

her seventeenth year when

she wrote Fior di Sardegna

{Flower of Sardinia)

which attracted the attention of others than the Sar-

Anime

dinians; then followed

oneste, "which

had the

honor of a Preface by Ruggiero Bonghi who saw

in

it

the proof of unusual creative ability and of impressionistic artistic sensibility."

the

romance, "If

first

rights,

Her

it

Grazia Deledda says of

had published

with author's

would have made me a millionaire."

first

writings

were short

among her books


Wind) "for we are
ites

is

Canne

like

of her

own

{Flight into Egypt).

and some

of her favor-

vento {Reeds

in the

reeds in the wind and the

wind determines our destiny."

many

al

stories

One

poems, then romances and novels.

reflects

it

Another story which

sentiments

is

Fuga

in

Egitto

In prose and fiction alike she


GRAZIA DELEDDA
has 'Vitalized the

life

299

of the Sardinian people."

In
U

explanation of her localized settings, she writes:

my

people.

mountains and valleys are part of me.

Why

know and
Its

should

we

love Sardinia.

people are

Its

when
drama of

search for subjects beyond the horizon

we have only to open our eyes upon all the


human life close at hand? It is a better thing to
catch, in sincerity, the life we are capable of interpreting than to translate subjects beyond our experi-

And

ence.

Her
to

husband,

Sardinia

hood.

M. Madesani from Lombardy, came

in

Grazia

She had never

Deledda's

left

came an employe

side.

Two

in

the

young

woman-

her native island until she

married and went to Rome, where

Ministry of

Sardinia called to be put into print."

M. Madesani

government; he

War. Their home

is

is

in

be-

the

towards the country-

sons have graduated with honorable de-

grees from the University.

her complete

list,

She writes diligently

revised by herself for this book,

indicates the ratio of production as about a

book

year.

Of

her method she said to Stanis Ruinas: "I have

been writing because of an instinctive necessity.

have

The
when I

been writing for myself, and do the same to-day.


public and success

New York

by Alice Rohe.

come afterwards.

Herald Tribune,

New

In fact,

York, December

4,

1927, article

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

3 oo

write a novel or a romance,

never set before myself

a preestablished or preordered end."

The

reader of her

fiction is

uniformly tragic tone.

impressed by the almost

She asserts that she

pessimist; she "is convinced that

over Evil.

But

it

is

Illusion will

temporary

have

God

it

illusion."

is

not a

always triumphs

that Evil conquers.

Tragedy

her stories because, as a child, she saw

many

reigns in
u
a tragic

Her father was, at different


times, mayor of Nuoro, her home village, and to their
abode, as to "everybody's house," came many people
with their tales of "rancor, discord, and hatred." Her
and horrifying spectacle."

sensitive imagination

and emotions suffered from sights

of bloodshed and distress.

Another element
during these

in the child's

nature was developed

impressionable years:

suffered

as

keenly as she saw; she revealed what the Nobel

in-

scription called her "depth

problems

she

and sympathy" with human

her writings from girlhood to middle

in

life.

Said Stanis Ruinas of this phase of her expression,

"Deledda naturally could not have written of happy

One

things.

is

not to be astounded then

if,

in

her

first

short stories, even in those written at thirteen years,


there

is

that spirit of humanity,

that loftiness

and

sorrow."

Humanity
4

Ruinas, op.

in

cit.,

times of sorrow, terrified by tales of


p. 69.

Ibid., p. 62.

New

York Times Photo

GRAZIA DELEDDA

GRAZIA DELEDDA

301

bandits and bloodshed told at night and relived in

dreams, forms the germ of earlier tales; humanity

which

suffers

even more silently and deeply

tional

crises

is

the

basis

of later fiction

Mother, Nostalgia and Ashes.

known

best

there

like

The

Deledda,

dramatic restraint where the emotions of

is

Maria Maddalena, are unfolded,

passage after she has paid a

whom

Agnes,

emo-

In the first-cited novel,

to English readers of Grazia

Paul's mother,
this

in

Even now,

visit to

the

as in

woman,

her son loved.

sitting

on the

stairs in the

dim

light of the flickering

lamp, the mother could see again the look, at once ironical and
tender,

which the

girl

had turned upon her

as she

bade her

farewell,

and the manner

eyelids as

though she knew no other way of hiding the feelings

in

which she had lowered her heavy

her eyes betrayed too plainly.

And

those eyes, and that

drawing back into

way

and then

of revealing her soul in a sudden flash of truth

in-

was extraordinarily
like Paul.
So much so that during the days following when,
because of his manner and his reserve, her suspicions grew and

stantly

filled

herself

again,

her heart with fear, she did not think with any hatred of

woman who was leading him into sin, but she thought only
how she might save her too, as though it had been the saving

the
of

of a daughter of her own. 6

Nostalgia

is

another story of restrained sorrow,

tinctured with strong humanity.

Because

it

ten soon after the author left her island


6

was

writ-

home

for

The Mother by Grazia Deledda, translated from the Italian by


Mary G. Steegmann, 1925, p. 21. By permission of the Macmillan Co.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

302

Rome, and some readers surmised that

residence in

was autobiographical, Grazia Deledda added


ment,

a state-

second edition, about her happiness

in a

new home,

to

show

reflection of the

her

in

was imaginative but

the story

it

unhappiness which she had witnessed.

H. H.

Cenere, translated as Ashes by

Colvill,

in

one of her most depressing

stories, written

with deep feeling and simple words.

It reveals the

19 1 2,

is

demoralizing

effects

He

Sardinia.

of

was the

is

city

and

its

and

cause he was attractive personally but

many

he suffered

from Sardinia

When

mishaps.

to visit him, he

simplicity

and ignorance

bred wife.

The book

in the

ends

farmer but

finds his life has

made from

weak morally,

his

mother came

was ashamed of her


presence of his

leading part;

it

One

of the

first

at

ashes.

women

film

was

which Eleonora Duse took the

was shown for

Avenue Playhouse,

city-

in inevitable tragedy, for

become only

this story, in

Be-

social.

he loses the confidence and comradeship of both

and

Here

university.

beset with conflicts, both moral

from

a youth

illegitimate son of a

he aspired to get into the


he

Rome upon

life in

Twelfth

critics

a time at the Fifth

Street,

New

York.

to recognize the skill

Deledda

was

William

and

Dean

promise

of

Grazia

Howells,

in a

favorable review of her earlier translated

fiction in

"The Easy Chair"

The Sargent

of Harper's Magazine.

School produced her play,

"Hatred,"


GRAZIA DELEDDA

303

(Odio Vince; Hatred Conquers) before a representa-

"Two

tive audience.
is

Miracles," one of her best tales,

included by Walter Brooks in Great Short Stories

7
of the World.

In her

Academy

bers of the Italian


in

1926.

With

admirers.

she has been

women mem-

election as one of the three

honored to

Mussolini

own country

of Immortals, created by

This ruler

is

one of her sincere

shyness, she responded to his invita-

an audience and expressed her gratitude for the

tion to

gift of his

autographed photograph.

lives quietly

declaring that

In her

"woman's sphere

In social and intellectual circles she

home."
less often

home
is

she
the

is

found

than other Italian writers of poetry and the

novel.

She has suffered from lack of understanding, both

among her own neighbors

Roman

critic

artistic

in

letter

Manca, dra-

Stanis

to

of the Tribunal she wrote

"I began

my

career with Sardinian sketches, which really

because they were Sardinian

brought

among

Recalling the days of her girlhood

critics.

disappointments,

matic

in Sardinia and, later,

perhaps too Sardinian

me both annoyance and

trouble; the settings

were strongly Sardinian, the characters portraits from


life,

such as

was able

teen-year-old fantasy.

to produce in
I

thought

Robert M. McBride & Company, 1926.


Ruinas, op cit., pp. 52-53.

my weak

thir-

was pleasing my

THE NOBEL

30 4

compatriots

and

them?

You

sorrow

PRIZE WINNERS

who knows what

can imagine then

experienced

stoned after these

when

first stories

In this same letter she

my

expected from

sorrow

the

first

barely missed being

came

tells, in

to light."

a lighter tone, of the

revenge taken by some of her "heroes who, not being

me

able to challenge

and they

accustomed to the

little

was a woman

to a duel, since I
foils,

struck

me

with

malediction, injuries and ridicule and even said that I

merely signed what others wrote."


tion affected the health

and

spirits

While

this reac-

of the young author,

"breaking her dreams," she refused to desist from

throw down her pen.

writing, determined not to

stead I tempered
challenge

become

of

the

woman

my

pen,

positive

"In-

and while accepting the


Sardinian

having

public,

of the house which was the better,

pieced a sketch together between setting the table and

preparing the

coffee,

and composed verses before

window, facing the mountains tinted with pink,


silent

twilight,

flowers of

or

my

my

in the

entwining the verses with the silken

embroidery, or the stitch of

my

knitting

how many times bathed with a tear of rancor


disdain." The mother of Grazia Deledda, twenty

oh,

years younger than her husband, was an artist

broidery
ledda

is

and Sardinian
an expert

folk-stitchery

in this craft,

in

Grazia

em-

De-

producing pieces of un-

usual beauty in design and color.

GRAZIA DELEDDA
That she
mentality,

is

poetic by nature, with

marks of

senti-

evident to readers of her letters and of

is

She can be ruthless

her books.

305

in

her portrayal,

in

novels and dramas, of sensuous experiences and some-

times of tragic infidelity and suffering.

however,

is

In a literary ranking, her poetry has

value than her prose, although there are occa-

sional fine lines of sensibility


tribute to

Donna

"The

Silent

silenziosa

trazione, 9 Milly
this writer

dei

and emotion.
the Silver

Hair" (La

capelli

d'argento

in

L'lllus-

Dandolo emphasizes the humanity of

and her devotion to the ideal of the home.

a poet so wishes

sin

can become poetry

if

and Grazia Deledda so wishes and

her consoling song

Among

In a fervid

Lady of

She adds, "Love, sorrow and

now

note,

that of sadness or melancholy, rather than

of pessimism.
less

The

is

spread throughout the world."

her romances, translated into English but

out of print in this country,

is

After the Divorce

(Dopo il divorzio), translated from the Italian by


Maria Hornor Lansdal. 10 In spite of unevenness in
structure and lapses in characterization, the story holds

one's interest.

The motif

is

found

in the effect

upon

Giovanne Eva of her husband's imprisonment for


twenty-seven years, for a political offense, and another
aspect of the law which creates consternation in the Sar9

November 20, 1927,


Henry Holt & Co.,

10

pp. 418-419.
1905.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

306

dinian home.

Paolo

tells

about "the new divorce law

which has been approved and any

woman whose

hus-

band

is

With

that ardent idealism with which the author always

serving a sentence can regain her freedom/'

treats the

tort:

home, she gives to Aunt Porredda the

"What

re-

God

an idea! as though any one but

could undo a marriage!"

Giovanne

is

introduced

in

the

first

page of the

story,

crying bitterly, "shaking her head from time to time,


as

though to indicate that there was no hope, abso-

lutely

none at

As

all."

room without windows,

she

sits

disconsolate, in the

outside "far, far away, against

the dusky background, gleamed the yellow ray of a


little,

solitary

Bachissia, "a

star."

tall,

Aunt Porredda and Mother

tragic-looking figure

a gaunt, yellow face,

shaped

like that

all in

black, with

of some bird of

prey," keep vigil with the young, forlorn wife.

An

untidy uncle and a greedy student, Paolo, share the

dismal peasant home.

There

is

another character

veritable "bird of prey,"

sumed with "two

in

Martina seconds

who
who is

story

namely Brontu,

is

con-

loves," one for brandy and the other

for Giovanne, "the

cating things

in the

two most

beautiful, ardent, intoxi-

the whole world."


his passion for

Shrewd Aunt

Giovanne but she

is

warned by her mother and by Constantino Ledda,


from

his prison,

"Remember

the mortal sin;

remember

GRAZIA DELEDDA

307

Circumstances, however, are too strong for

eternity."

the will and devotion of the wife of a convict and she

although

yields,

her

love

dominating.

She bears a

Mariedda, to

live

Constantino

for
child,

with her

first

is

second daughter,

by Constantino,

child

Aunt Martina, mother of Brontu,

Malthinedda.

still

de-

serves her epithet of "an old harpy."

Then comes the day


would go away but is
though she

is

no longer

his

animal

he

tries to see

of release for Constantino; he


held by love for his wife,

and he has

his

lust for a half-witted girl,

al-

fallen victim to

Mattea.

Giovanne he complains,

in a

When

song put

into the text by his author


"Little heart, dear heart,
I

await thee day by day;

But even when thou seest me,


Hovereth near the bird of prey."

Brontu goes away for

Using

a local tradition,

stantino,

Saturday.

After

all

year and returns to

Mother

"The saying goes

that

God

around the

in its

symbolism: "It

Overhead the sky

By

is

I"

permission of Henry Holt

&

Co.

11

is

a tender blue,

village the fields of grain

the waves of a green, encircling sea."


11

does not pay on

the sordidness and tragedy in the story, the

soft spring day.


all

Bachissia says to Con-

Well, Brontu Deja's dying, poor wretch

ending has a note of cheer,

and

die.

sway

like

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

308

of the writings by Grazia Deledda, verified

list

with annotations by the novelist herself, includes fortyfour publications, beginning in 1891 and carried on to
1

93

They

1.

are varied, mostly novels and romances,

only a very few translated into English but

rendered

erally

French.

Sardinia

exceptions.

German

and

ever her background, with a few

is

Like her predecessors among the winners

of the Nobel prize


literary

Scandinavian,

into

more gen-

oblivion

in literature,

the

folklore,

she has rescued from

customs,

history

and

dialect of her island, just as Frederic Mistral restored

Provence, Carl Spitteler revealed Switzerland

in

his

poetry, Yeats pictured Ireland, in her days of renaissance,

and Sigrid Undset visualized medieval Norway.

Her interpreter, Ruinas, asserts that Grazia Deledda


"is moved by a great, artistic and humanitarian ideal
... to say to the world and above all to Italy There
:

exists

very pure Italian land, derelict, unknown,

abandoned to
necessary to

from the

its

know

evil in

which brutalizes

To
this

sorrow without name, Sardegna.


it

to love

which

it."

it

it, it is

is

necessary to free

12

it

immersed, the torment

12

get a balanced estimate of the literary rank of

Sardinian writer,

it

may

be well to compare some

of the Italian judgments with those of other

No

It is

one can question that,


Ruinas, op.

cit.,

pp. 70-71.

in large

measure, she

critics.
fulfils

GRAZIA DELEDDA

309

condition of the Nobel will for this group of

the

awards

for her writings are, in spite of pages of

grim realism,

"idealistic in tendency,"

mankind."

interest in "the betterment of

de Bosdari,

in

"Some Currents

Last Thirty Years,"

in the

13

with a profound

Alessandro

European Literature

in

describes the tendencies

of European literature, not as broad, but "a liberation

In answer to

of small sections of national literature."

many

the question, which he says

"What

have asked

Italians

Grazia Deledda's writing had won the

in

attention of all

Europe and had won the Nobel

rather some other Italian writer

more loved

he

is

declares,

"The answer

easy

prize,

in Italy,"

the

typical

descriptions of the soul, the customs and the countryside of her native Sardinia."

Another

L'lllustrazione,

Fernando Palazzi,

reviewer,

Italian

November

22,

1925,

in

commends her

"severe and luminous, strong yet gentle" literary

style.

"The heroism of her

characters seems within the reach

of

presented with such clarity and

because

all,

felicity

art

18

She

is

influence,

of no school and has,

the unique

no vogue nor
perhaps, no spe-

nor does she have imitators; she

continually taking

Nuova

critic stresses

shows no modern foreign

cial tendencies;
is

This

this writer:

literary current.

She

is

of expression."

work by
Her

it

away

Antologia, Vol. VI, 1928.

all

is

alone.

ornament and ephemeral

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

310

vanity from her romances, making them always more stark and

meagre, but always more powerful.

Her

figures are cut

with masculine force, clear and luminous as an ancient basrelief.

Her

though quite modern

art,

in conception, attitudes

and complexities of keen psychological


restlessness

characters,

of

nevertheless,

has,

solemn beauty of the Greek sculptural

and nervous

analysis,

the

austere

and

art.

In less effusive words, Luigi Russo, in / narratori


(pp. 153
fruit of

extols the simplicity of her diction

ff.)

"the

long and patient discipline," and the gradual

transformation of her

fiction,

from that of "a simple

extemporaneous narrator to a narrator of art and


reflection.

She has been the poet of the popular

epopee which flourishes

in

her native island,

the

ingenious, instructive narrator of that oral epopee.

He

reiterates her long apprenticeship, her passages of

"monotony of inspiration" but the growing


lyrical force of

"very

her art."

modern,"

This

art, says

although her

world

M.
is

"intense,

Russo,

"barbaric,

elemental and mystical, psychologically remote,


wish,

from our

intellectual

experiences."

is

if

She

you
feels

experiences with the austerity of discipline, akin to that

of the Russian realists of our day.

Luigi Pirandello,

the Italian dramatist, gave unstinted praise to

Mother {La madre) when

it

appeared

greatest story written in Italian in

After reading such

in

1920, as "the

modern

appreciative

The

times."

analyses

of

the

GRAZIA DELEDDA
gifts of this writer,

one

311

especially sorry that so

is

few

of her books are familiar to English and American

Although

readers.

it

might be

her characters and motives,

grasp fully

difficult to

more intimate acquaintance

with her writings would produce broader knowledge


of her background,

more adequate understanding of

Even

her earnest purpose and distinctive gifts.


translated

form she

is

able to stir deep

within her readers, for Sardinia, the


parish, "the poorest in the

its

Mother

is laid.

priest and,

in

sympathy,

little island,

and

kingdom," where The

For one hundred years

when one came, he proved

with the devil," so that his evil

lacked any

it

to be

spirit,

in

league

penetrating

through an underground passage, could practise sorcery upon his successors.


Is

Grazia Deledda a creative

own country and among

In her
there

artist or a

craftsman?

of other lands,

critics

difference of opinion about her literary rank.

is

Ernest Boyd summarized the judgments of certain

when he wrote: "Grazia Deledda

critics,

scientious craftsman in a

with her
teller."
critics

14

own

minor genre,

at

con-

home

only

is

people, an unpretentious and vivid story-

Dino Mantovani, by repute one of the best

of Italy, wrote

"Grazia Deledda has read much

of Dostoievski and Gorki, and that

is

type of certain dialogues, and in her

manner of

14

Saturday Review of Literature, November

to be seen in the

3,

1927.

describ-

THE NOBEL

312

PRIZE WINNERS

ing the most wretched and abjectly miserable creatures.

The

psychological part of her books

Much

strongest.

happier

is

is

certainly not the

the picture she draws of

the exterior world, true and fresh in impressions.


lyric

sentiment of nature

sincerity.

is

The

drawn with an accent of

She makes the reader

feel the first ineffable

sensations of youth, as only a few great writers like

Leopardi and Tolstoi, can do."


15 Letter atur a

1B

Contemporanea, Turin, 1913,

p.

370.

CHAPTER XX
HENRI BERGSON: THINKER AND TEACHER
The
w

awarded

prize of 1927 has been

Bergson, Henri

(member

in recognition of his rich

and

the

of these two

They were

so

Nobel prize was given to Eucken,

in

philosophers are associated

when

and resplendent

The names

Eucken and Bergson!

linked

Academy) born 1859:

life-giving ideas

with which they are presented."

art

to

of French

in

memory.

1908; they are so connected, twenty years


the

award goes

tributed to the

to

Henri Bergson.

later,

when

Both have con-

sum of human knowledge by funda-

mental, constructive ideas; both have

waged

battles

against materialistic standards; both have expressed, in


lucid,

effective

words, their philosophies; both have

Rudolf Eucken and Henri

been popular teachers.

Bergson have been

United

in the

States, at the

same

time, as lecturers at our leading universities and before

learned societies. 2

With such resemblances


contrasts

in

these

personalities

two men have marked

and philosophies.

Inscription with the Nobel Prize

See Chapter III of this book,

Award

p. 53.

3i3

in Literature,

Henri
1037.

THE NOBEL

3 4

Bergson, although living


tive

PRIZE WINNERS
retirement from ac-

in partial

work, has been prominent

in

movements for world

He

peace and educational progress.

was one of

the

leaders of the French delegation to form, under the


auspices of the

League of Nations, the

Institute for

He

International Intellectual Cooperation.

on any subject of universal interest


cation or literature and his talk

information.
the

Forceful

is

is

alert

in

economics, edu-

is full

of stimulus and

the adjective that springs to

mind of one who meets him personally or knows

him through

his writings.

Unlike many foreign lecture-visitors to the United


States he asserts that, as a people,

reserves of idealism.'*
to
in

we have "unsuspected

Admitting that Americans "like

make money," he declares "they


keeping it. They care for it only

are not interested


as a means, not as

an end they proceed at once to spend

it,

to apply

it

to

some

practical use."

Henri Bergson was born


of Paris, October

18,

in the

1859.

to distribute

it,

Montmartre

section

In ancestry, he traces

descent from a distinguished Jewish family of Poland.

He

pays high tribute to his mother,

who

taught him

English, using this language daily with him, and gave

him other stimulus for

When

his

later

work

scholar.

he was nine years old, he began school at the

"An Hour with Dr. Henri Bergson," by Marcus


can Review of Reviews, November, 1924.
3

as

M. Marks, Ameri-

HENRI BERGSON
Lycee Condorcet; mathematics was
during those years.

won

Fie

matical problem before he

was published

tion

was

It

315

his favorite study

for a mathe-

a prize

was eighteen and

Annates de Mathematiques.

in the

Normale Superieure

at the Ecole

his solu-

that he

whom

under the magic influence of Ravaisson,


eulogized later, before the French

came

Academy

of

he

Moral

and

Political Sciences, as

who

could reconcile the problems of philosophy with

"a soul of

artist or poet/'

his heart as well as his intelligence.

Several years after his graduation he returned to


the Ecole

Normale Superieure

as teacher, after he

had

served as professor of philosophy at Angers and Cler-

mont and other

the College de France


the

and,

Institute

In 1900, he was teaching in

places.

the next year he

19 14,

in

Many

French Academy.

made

member

his convincing

So popular were

men and women


and

listen intently

state

and

society.

Edwin E.

of

many

An

interesting

in

in

swarms,"

races and interests, to

Major Prophets

of Today, an

excellent analysis of Bergson's philosophy


4

methods

discuss his philosophy at dinners of

Slosson, in

Times, December

of the

his lectures at the

College de France that his auditors came

both

elected to

of his pupils have extolled his

magnetism as teacher and


the classroom.

was

reminiscence

16, 1928.

by Raymond

and teach-

Recouly,

New York

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

316
ing,

emphasized the musical voice of Bergson

students call
the

him "the

have

wide

left

educational

At

pupils.

trails

lines,

flies

influence of Bergson, as

John Dewey

in

America; both

upon the history of thinking along

through personal contacts with their

his Paris residence, or in his

Cergue

at St.

his

This same biographer and

compares the magnetic

teacher, with that of

he

lark, because the higher

sweeter he sings."

critic

summer

retreat

he and his family are

in Switzerland,

never too busy to greet visitors and to give impres-

He

sions of gracious hospitality.

found himself hur-

To Mr.

ried in this country, during his lecture tours.

Slosson, he said, "I shall always

remember America

as

Land of Interrupted Conversations. I have met


many interesting people with whom I should like to

the
so

talk,

but then somebody equally interesting comes up."

His philosophical theories have been an evolution,


with varied expressions.
a

He

began as a

He

devotee of exact sciences.

clinations

further

materialist,

had youthful

in-

towards mechanics, and hoped to carry to

stages

the

philosophy of Herbert Spencer.

As he

studied mechanical formulas and tried to apply

them

to the explanation of

the

universe,

he found

them inadequate; for example, he disputed the


"time"
6 Little,

in physical science.

Brown &

6 Ibid.,
p. 68.

Co., 1914,

Chap.

He
II.

idea of

maintained that "real

HENRI BERGSON
time

is

not measurable like space, by a clock or

calendar, but

may vary

it

From

ness."

317

"as revealed by our conscious-

a determinist, he

became a "libertarian"

and, in exposition of his attitude, he wrote his books,

Time and Free Will and Matter and Memory.

From
that

these earlier convictions, forcefully explained

"mind

distinct

is

dependent upon

it,"

from matter and only

in

part

he passed on to a broader study of

personality, of the senses, the instinct

and the

intelli-

gence, in the comprehensive volume, Creative Evolu-

The

tion.

Bergson,

is

authorized

approved

translation,

by Arthur Mitchell who,

in a

by

Translator's

Note, acknowledges the "friendly interest of Professor

William James," both

was dark as well

"illumination of

in

much

happy rendering of

as the

that

certain

words and phrases for which an English equivalent was


difficult

The
two
well,
in

to find."

salient differences in the philosophy of these

leaders,

who understand and

interpret each other

have been summarized by Horace Meyer Kallen,

William James and Henri Bergson:

in

Con-

given

due

Study

trasting Theories of Life. 8

In

Creative

Evolution,

Bergson

has

emphasis to philosophic tradition, adapting

his

modes

and phrases to the present age; he has traced the


7
8

Published 1911, 19th printing, 1931, Henry Holt


The University of Chicago Press, 1914.

&

Co.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

318

major philosophical teachings from Plato and Aristotle


to

Descartes, Spinoza,

The underlying
terial

towards

Leibnitz,

Spencer and Kant.

progress of his evolution, from ma-

spiritual,

is

voiced

in

such sentences as

these which contrast the material, or "flowing," with


another essence, or movement: u For, so far as inert

matter

is

concerned,

we may

neglect the flowing without

committing a serious error; matter, we have

said,

is

weighted with geometry; and matter, the reality which


descends, endures only by

which ascends.
ascension. "

But

life

connection with

its

and consciousness are

that

this

very

The profound and


son are unfolded

in

"life-giving ideas" of

Henri Berg-

language so clear that reading

his

may

So

ever a delight, whatever

books

is

many

illustrations illumine his

be the

text.

pages that the reader's

imagination and intellect respond at the same time.


In

this

method he resembles William James, the

as teacher

Sometimes

of

popularity,

and writer, leads to unexpected

results that,

pragmatist.

this

quality

on occasions, have caused the latent disturbance of the


philosopher's love for retirement.

In France, his

name

has been appended to a "Bergsonian art and a Bergsonian literature," even to "a Bergsonian Catholicism

and a Bergsonian labor movement,"

according

to

9 Creative Evolution by Henri Bergson, authorized translation by


Arthur Mitchell, Henry Holt & Co., p. 369.

HENRI EERGSON

319

Mr. Slosson. 10 Among his ardent disciples


has been Edouard Le Roy, a Catholic, who has found
records by

many

on religion

interesting sidelights

in

Bergson's

philosophy, although the philosopher does not offer


direct teachings

on either religion or economic move-

ments.
It

happens sometimes that by-products are as

inter-

and valuable as the original achievement.

Two

esting

such literary by-products of Bergson's philosophy appeal to general readers by their subjects and texts,

Dreams and Laughter. The former, transby Edwin E. Slosson, with an Introduction, 11 is

namely,
lated

a thin, absorbing book, originally a lecture before the


Institut psychologique,

March

16, 1901,

and published

the following June in the

Revue

scientifique.

appeared

in the

Independent, October

lish translation

23 and 30, 1913, before

it

was issued

Emphasizing that dreaming

is

esses of perception, that "sleep

estedness,"

the

study

deals

reiteration of dreams, with

much
is

Its

Eng-

in

book form.

like

other proc-

a state of disinter-

with

the

causes

and

possible interpretations.

The metaphor which Bergson uses is familiar and


forceful: "Our memories are packed away under
pressure like steam in a boiler and the
escape valve."
10

Major Prophets

11

Huebsch, 1914.

of Today, p. 80.

dream

is

their

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

320

With generous remembrance

of

and abundant

earlier psychologists,

the

findings

of

from

illustrations

books and practical experiments, he questions whether


"in general," the

dream

notes exceptions

like

create* anything, although he

that of Tartini,

composer of the eighteenth century and


tion,

"The

Devil's Sonata," which

From memories,

dream.

then,

dreams, the memories "often

in

came
are

the violinisthis composi-

him

in a

derived

our

to

a state of invisible

phantoms," but some of them aspire "to

them-

fill

selves with color, with sonority, in short, with

ma-

and the only ones that succeed are those

teriality,

which can assimilate themselves with the color-dust


which we perceive, the external and internal sensations
that

we

leaves

12

catch."

To
of

solution

the psychology of the future, he

telepathy

as

an

dreams and other mysteries of "the

influence

upon

subsoil of con-

sciousness."

Widely read, and translated

into Russian,

Polish,

Swedish, German, Hungarian and English, has been

Laughter:

An

Essay on the Meaning of the Comic,

with authorized translation

13

The

three

articles

in

chapters:

"The Comic

Dreams,

p.

the

35.

on

revised

by the au-

laughter

originally

Revue de Paris; they form three

appeared

12

English by Cloudesley

and Fred Rotherell,

Brereton
thor.

in

in

General and the Comic Ele13

Macmillan

Co., 1924.

Copyright

iqio. by Campbell Studios

HENRI BERGSON

HENRI BERGSON

Forms and Movements," "The Comic Element


Situations and Words," "The Comic in Character."

ment
in

in

"What
ment

in the

laughable?"

human"

strictly

or animal
is

What

does laughter mean?


is

That "the comic does not


is

321

is

first

the basal ele-

challenging query.

exist outside the pale of

what

an early premise, for no landscape

"laughable"

is

the

is

only man

Emotion

laughs.

the "foe of laughter," for real laughter

accompanied by deep

is

seldom

Intelligence remains as

feeling.

"an echo of laughter."


Interesting
"as^ a

the portion of this study of laughter

is

sort of social

gesture."

Moliere and Labiche, the

fiction

From

the plays by

by Dickens and

Mme.

de Stael, the philosopher draws examples to prove his

There are suggested parallelisms between

deductions.

interpretation

this

Comedy and
It is

"a

the

specific

of laughter and

Comic

Spirit"

the

by George Meredith.

remedy for vanity," and on

the philosopher ends his study: "Laughter


a

corrective.

utilized

evil

thought

is

who

sanity

with

Here,
a

as

in

is

this note

above

all,

elsewhere,

nature

has

14

That

last

view to good."

typical of this thinker

never evades truth


but

"Essay on

whatever form

and teacher, who


it

must be sought,

brings to his research a never failing supply of

and "joy

in

knowledge."

"Is There Anything


14 Laughter, p.
197.

New

under the Sun?" asked

"

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

322

Edwin Bjorkman,
and

He

studies.

found one answer


Actuality. 1 *

The Philosopher of

in

Henri Bergson:

George Santayana

another interpreter of "The Philosophy of

Bergson/'
trine.

16

in his

With

his study with

discriminating essays,

M. Henri

is

M. Henri

Winds of Doc-

his characteristic, crisp diction, he begins

an arresting sentence

and remarkable of

sentative

of essays

in his title to a collection

Bergson.

1T

measured judgment and

An

"The most

repre-

living

philosophers

artist

in

emotional

words, with
yet

suggestion,

essentially "elaborate in his learning/'

is

is

the diagnosis

of Santayana.

The

reader

tributes to

who

anticipates a continuation of such

Bergson throughout the

essay will find surprises.


cism,

Professor

With

fifty

insight

pages of

and frank

Santayana unearths the

this
criti-

defects

in

Bergson's logic, the fallacies in his historical judgments, and the dangers into which his mysticism and
"creative evolution"

have led him.

When

Bergson

turned away from mathematics and physics to more


spiritual

and imaginative

ideas, this critic says:

understands but he trembles.

Non-human

frighten him, as they did Pascal.

cosmic agoraphobia."
15
16

New York
New York

17 Ibid., p. 58.
18 Ibid., p. 62.

18

He

finds

He

"He

immensities

suffers

from

fear and apology

and London, 191 1.


and London, 1913, Charles Scribner's Sons


HENRI BERGSON
two

of the philosopher, "of space, of mathe-

traits

matics, of necessity,

of intimidation
solve

323

many

is

and of eternity" but

not altogether a

loss,

this attitude

for he tries to

psychological problems and becomes "the

spokesman of many an

inarticulate soul."

Although averse to the exact sciences

19

in his philo-

sophical tenets, Bergson uses the natural sciences with

impressive

effects,

due to

his gift of

keen observation

but Professor Santayana warns against mere surface

reading of these effects

There

naturalist.

is

in

Creative Evolution by the

no question that Bergson

is

learned naturalist, as was Aristotle, but, like the Greek,

he

is

"profoundly out of sympathy with nature,"

He

affirms this interpreter.

is

"a miscroscopic psy-

chologist," with chief interest not in science in any

form but

in

memory and

impulse of man.

To

Pro-

fessor Santayana, firm in his adherence to other philo-

sophical beliefs, Bergson's

work seems almost

like a

myth, a fable, that of the charming and appealing poetpsychologist.

and plausible

After discussing at length the alluring


aspects

of

the

French philosopher's

writing, akin to the "mystical rebellion

and atavism

in

the contemporary mind," Professor Santayana closes

with a touch of irony

in

which he

is

more

witty than

convincing in his belief that Bergson's philosophy "will

remain a beautiful monument to the passing moment,


lbid.,

p. 63.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

324

a capital film for the cinematograph of history, full of

psychological truth and of a kind of restrained senti-

mental piety."

20

Mention has already been made

in this

chapter of

one of the devoted followers of Bergson's philosophical


teachings,

M. Edouard Le

Roy.

He

has not been a

pupil directly but his deep interest in the subject has

been fostered by an intimate correspondence with the

noted French teacher.

This correspondence, especially

formed the nucleus of two

the words of Bergson,


articles

by

M. Le Roy

that were

Revue des deux mondes

in

first

February, 19 12, and later

collected, with additional text, in a


titled

The

New

book

in 19 13, en-

Philosophy of Henri Bergson. 21

M. Le Roy

the Preface,

published in the

In

discounts any intention of

writing "a profound critical study" of Bergson's phi-

losophy but stresses his purpose to interpret these


ideas "for the public at large."

Throughout

this

book, as in the extracts from Berg-

son's letters to the author, emphasis


difference

between

this

New

"systems," in one salient point

is

placed upon the

Philosophy" and older

namely,

that a system

"implies," calls up the static idea of a finished building,"

while the underlying thought of Bergson's Creative

Evolution

is

that of a "proceeding," something to

make

20 Ibid.,
p. 109.
21

Holt

Translated from the French by Vincent Benson, M.A., Henry

&

Co., 1913.

HENRI BERGSON
u

progress, something

To

this

many

325

to be lived as well as thought."

progress and development, Bergson invites

thinkers and observers, to thus correct and sup-

plement each other.

Perception, as an art, must com-

bine with reflection.

To

understand Bergson's idea of

Matter and Memory,

perception, as outlined in his

one must recall his words, "Perception becomes

After a de-

end only an opportunity of recollection. "


tailed

examination

problems of

this

presses his "last

of

New

the

is

closing formula thus:

It is far easier to assert

and prove the

his pupils

he succeeded Taine and Renan

M.

as

22

influence of

and readers than

to diagnose his philosophical theories.

ex-

a philosophy of duration-

the enthronement of positive metaphysics."

Henri Bergson upon

and

teaching

M. Le Roy

Philosophy,

word" and

Bergson's philosophy

method,

in the

As an

it is

influence

he expanded and

developed tenets of his teacher, Ravaisson; he gave a

some of the

later ideas in the philosophies

of Freud and Einstein.

Depressed by the more ma-

forecast of

terialistic

and pessimistic thoughts of Taine and Renan,

the younger generation, in the late 1890's, and pre-war

years of the twentieth century, listened gladly to the


teachings of Bergson.

This responsiveness was due,

large part, to his magnetic

words.

Raymond

22 Ibid.,
p. 223.

skill in

in

spoken and written

Recouly, one of his listeners and

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

326

declares:

converts,

"One would be

fully

justified

in

saying that the entire generation which fought in the

Great

War

Bergson."

had

been

formed

and

influenced

by

23

Indirect influences of this philosopher are found

modern

art,

literature,

reactions since the

in

The

morality and religion.

World War have reduced somewhat

the fervor of acceptance of

some of

his

more

optimistic

deductions but the award to him of the Nobel prize,


within such recent times,

is

tained potency, both in


citation

two

life

an indication of his

and

"his rich and

life-giving ideas

and resplendent

are presented."

As one who has nourished

individual mind,

memory and

In the

literature.

summarized

qualities are

which they

art with

soul,

sus-

life in

as one

who

the

has

written his messages with true literary art, he was duly

honored.

William James, often

philosophical

doctrines,

differing

expressed

the

readers in general: "If anything can


easy to follow,

it

is

a style like Bergson's.

reality itself, instead of reiterating

professors have thought."

New York

sentiment

make hard

horizons open on every page you read.

23

from him

Times, December

16,

1928.

It

in

of

things
.

New

tells

of

what dusty-minded

CHAPTER XXI
SIGRID UNDSET: NOVELIST OF

MEDIEVAL

NORWAY AND AGELESS HUMANITY


The

prize for 1928 has been

awarded:

Undset, Sigrid (Norwegian), born 1882: "principally with


regard

to

her

medieval times."

Many

powerful

pictures

of

years

before

citation

this

1928, her

name had been used

for

award

European

in

countries,

in

the

in

literature.

and

interest.

was given

to

in

in

as a probable laureate

many

Throughout

America,

become familiar with her novels,


absorbing

life

medal and prize money

Sigrid Undset, with the

this

Northern

readers

rich in texture

Beginning, in

many

had
and

instances,

with some doubt or indifference, these readers had

who held them


volumes of many hundred

found an author

spellbound through

three

pages,

tricks

imagination

of

or

melodrama

not by any
but

by

the

sheer force of her characterizations and her vivid

backgrounds. These characters and backgrounds were,


in general,

turies in

those of the fourteenth and fifteenth cen-

Norway

but,

so strong

Inscription with the Nobel Prize

327

Award

was the appeal


in Literature,

1928.

to

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

328

sympathetic understanding,

and so

the

real

vitally

problems of these men and women, that time and


place seemed relative beside the visualization of uni-

human

versal

When

nature.

award was announced,

the

it

gave more im-

petus to reading of the trilogy and tetralogy

books appeared

in

translation

to

as the

becoming so

fa-

miliar with the characters, in the volumes of Kristin

Lavransdatter and The Master of Hestviken, that one


could

many

discuss

places

gested.
cerity

them and

their

human problems

where such interesting topics were sug

There was

a consensus of tribute to the

and conviction of the author and to her

to maintain a single, impressive motif


details that

in

sin-

ability

amid a mass of

were woven into a complete tapestry of

medieval customs and standards.

Who

was Sigrid Undset?

How

far were her novels

revelations of her

own womanhood, with

and aspirations?

How

had she been able

its

problems

to gain this

information of setting and characters that seemed to

have seeped into her imagination and memory?

were some of the queries that beset her readers.

Such

Many

of the facts about this Norwegian author have been told

by one of her best interpreters, Miss Hanna Astrup


Larsen, editor of the American-Scandinavian Review. 2
2

Her

in a

articles in this

monograph, with

Review
title

for June and July, 1929, are reprinted


of "Sigrid Undset."

UNDSET

SIGRID

brooding

It is a serious,

and firm mouth and

329

face, with far-seeing eyes

which gazes at the reader

chin,

from the familiar photograph by Aage Remfeldt.


was born

in

Her

1882.

Denmark,

in the

She

town of Kalundborg,

in

father was the noted archeologist, Ingvald

Martin Undset.

To

parent she was indebted for

this

her encouragement to study Norwegian history and to


leave no link in that historical research disconnected.

To
in

be as thorough and penetrating

her

field,

as her father

Her mother was


women's

college

father, she

to write,

was

had been

Danish.
in

in

search for truth,

in his,

was her

Sigrid's education

Oslo.

was

at the

After the death of her

obliged, for a time, to

and for ten years she did

stifle

secretarial

her plan

work

Such was her daytime occupation but,

Oslo.

goal.

in

in

the

evenings and occasional holidays, the urge to write

gained hold upon her and she produced her

fiction

novels,

Fru Martha Oulie (1907), The Happy Age

(1909), a collection of

tales,

and the

which she gained wide attention


Jenny, in 191

Soon after
artist,

first

in

her

first

own

story by

country,

1.

this

novel appeared, she married the

A. C. Svarsted and, for a time, mingled the

life

of wife and mother with the profession of novelist.


Since
calls

192 1 she has lived at Lillehammer, busy with


of the home, the publishers and the Catholic

Church, to which she became a convert several years

THE NOBEL

330

PRIZE WINNERS

She writes slowly but incessantly.

ago.

She

lives

with

her characters until they become a part of herself;


that

is

why

they are so vitally real to her readers,

more

their hours of simple joys and,

and nights of mental and


earlier stories she

novels

often, their days

In her

spiritual conflicts.

observer and narrator;

of medieval Norway,

and theory of

definite plan
is

is

in

in

her later

she has

formulated a

The

general trend

life.

towards tragedy, when a character has violated

and moral laws; the denouement

racial ties

table as in
retribution.

is

as inevi-

Greek drama, from scenes of remorse and


In her later novels she has found a solu-

tion for spiritual distress in the peaceful cloisters


practical, self-sacrificing service of the
fiction reflects

Sigrid

her deep interest

Undset's

characters

in

are

Church.

and

Her

humanity.

drawn from

the

Norway of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. The daily life of these toilers in the
field or mart, in the home and small social circle, is
made so real that we share their small interests and

middle classes

in

larger problems.

Miss Larsen contrasts the

serious-

ness of this author with the "blithe geniality" of her

contemporary
All her

in fiction

of a similar scope, Jonas Lie.

women, from Jenny of

the story of

modern

times to Kristin and Ingunn of the medieval novels,


u
the eternal feminine," in their
are recognized as

major and minor

traits.

On

the other hand, they are

UNDSET

SIGRID

331

own age and environment. Their

distinctively of their

surroundings are described

in

minute detail and often

their characters are revealed through

So completely has Sigrid Undset assimilated

incidents.

the

these external

atmosphere of the fourteenth century

Norway, that

and her readers,

to her

rural

in

as familiar

it is

as that of the twentieth century in widely separated

areas.

To

the prose realism of her background she

has added poetry

in

thought and diction, records from

the old sagas and ballads, bits of philosophy

from the

revered religious leaders.

The approach

somewhat slow; she

girls

and

tested her

modern

writing stories of
the dangers

as novelist

skill

by

times, choosing, as a motif,

and struggles of young, self-supporting

their misfit marriages leading, in

to frustration

and disillusionment.

One

many

cases,

of the most

appealing of these earlier heroines was Edele


Stranger."

was

to her fiction of medieval times

in

"A

Edele was a forerunner of Jenny, the heroine of that


novel which gained for
tional

reputation.

medieval

stories,

read, with

author her

the

Since

success

art.

first

of

interna-

the

later

Jenny has been republished and

more appreciation of

and literary

Modern

Included in the volume, The

1908.

its

in

its

re-

tragic intensity

setting,

Happy Age: Den

it

is

the life

Lyckelige, Alder,

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

332

woman who breaks away


from her youth of repression in Norway and goes to
Rome, both to study and to achieve skill in art. Her

story of a gifted, sensitive

artistic

urge

one side of her nature but, at

satisfies

twenty-eight, she has another craving that finds expression

her

awakens

and

desire for love

this feeling in

a lover.

Helge,

her longing nature,

is

who

weaker

To-

than Jenny, both in mental and moral courage.

ward him she

cherishes a love that blends that of a

wife and a mother.

Back

suffers disillusionment

away again

but again

and sorrow;

to return to

disappointment

in his

finally,

Rome, hoping

in love in a

home, she
she breaks

to bury her

revived interest in her art

she endures frustration for a time until,

in scenes that are so

sordid and tragic as to appal

a reader, she ends her


tragic

Norway,

in

life.

It is a tale

many

of intense,

In some of the words spoken by

emotion.

Jenny to her comrade-artist, Gunnar Heggen, the


author expresses the keynote of her stories of unloved

women and
enough, for
get

from

it

their

so selfish.

it

is

is

our

can't share with

dual natures:

own

anyone

The

"Work

deepest pleasure

joy in doing
else.

cannot be

it

and

But no pleasure can be

transformed into happiness, unless we share

someone."

that

we
we

it

with

After Jenny, Sigrid Undset wrote other stories of


4

Translated by

Hanna Astrup

Larsen,

ibid., p. 8.

SIGRID

UNDSET

333

women and their conflicts in love, and


The most graphic, although not
handicaps.
married

its

yet

translated into English, are Spring, a novel {Vareen,


1

who marry,

9 14), with Rose and Thorkild as lovers

separate and then are reunited with a firmer affection,

and "Fru

Hjelde," with Uni,

the

heroine

of

"A

Stranger," married to patient, wise Kristian Hjelde.

This latter story

is

included in a volume,

The

Splinter

of the Troll Mirror {Splinten af Troldspeilet, 19 17)


In the

of

same

collection appears

lazy nature

selfish,

who

Fru Waage," a woman

blights the happiness of

two

homes.
Sigrid

Undset has written many short

varied characters and

which was published


in

fine

Norway

In

Poor Fates,

the collection,

among

with

"Simonsen,"

condensation.

first in

19 12, has been chosen

stories,

the Best Stories of

the Scandinavian Classics.

It

has a quality

of poetic insight, unfolding the character of the poor

"Wise Virgins" {Kloge

seamstress with heroic traits.

Jomfruer)

19 18, depicting

in

sacrificing characters

preciation

and

whose

satisfied

women

of noble, self-

lives lack the

was

love,

goal of ap-

the

immediate

forerunner of the trilogy, Kristin Lavransdatter, which

was

and
is

Occasionally,

the

masterwork

of

this

novelist.

in

her short stories, she introduces a

as her

Danish mother

of Danish picture, but

own was
in

or some background

the main, she keeps true to

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

334
the

Norwegian background, men and women of middle

class in dull, toilsome

The

homes.

from novels and

transition

to those of medieval times

seem to

tales of

modern

was not so abrupt

as

life

may

it

For many years she had studied sagas

be.

and ballads and retold some of these for modern


readers.
first

As

early as 1909

book of her famous

a tale of early

the

trilogy

Norway, with saga background,

Viga-Ljot and Vigdis.

Norwegian

eleven years before


appearedshe wrote

In

19 15

she rendered into

King Arthur and

tales of

entitled

Liv-

his knights.

ing mentally and imaginatively in the atmosphere of

medieval times, she prepared herself for the


tailed setting

which she has given to

all

rich, de-

her

fiction

written during the last decade.

Two

convictions were strongly entrenched in her

mind before she began the story of Kristin Lavransdatter; one, that the

men and women

of the fourteenth

century were fundamentally like humanity of the twentieth century; the other

was that

and

not

its

trivial

could

results,

by

the

be

right

and wrong,

minimized

modern tendencies of

thought and action.

"The

or

made

liberalism

doctrine that

sin

in

to under-

she

de-

nounces as the cheap and cowardly refuge of those

who

stand

everything

have failed to
Ibid., p. 12.

live

is

to

forgive

everything'

up to their own youthful ideals."

UNDSET

SIGRID

335

rgi^/l Woman's

In a collection of essays, published in

Viewpoint (Et Kvindesynspunkt) she affirms that love


,

Middle Ages was understood and discussed

the

in

under three aspects

a lofty but devastating pas-

temptation to mean and sneaking

sion, as a

as a social force:

to

"as

Modern thought

add anything new."

Womanhood

has not beenjible


:

has been the major theme of Sigrid

Undset's novels and

women were

and

acts,

In the earlier stories, the

tales.

far superior to the men, in characters

When

in vivid portraiture.

and

she conceived the plot and

characterizations of her trilogy,

she lived with the

heroine, Kristin Lavransdatter, through her girlhood,

maturity and last years, until she


distinct,

appealing individual.

lives for

Into the

readers as a

life

of Kristin

came other women, among them her mother, Ragnfrid,


whose personality

is

kept largely

in

the background

until the last,

dramatic scene of The Bridal Wreath.

Here

her husband, after the marriage of Kris-

tin,

she

tells

what her own

life

suffered emotionally,

meat" for him,


nant

than

how

she had "ground

as the old phrase said.

Kristin's

volume of the

had hidden and what she had

trilogy,

mother,
is

however,

mould for

More domiin

this

first

her father, a masterly drawing

of character.

Lavrans
6 Ibid.,
p.

14.

Bjorgulfsson

belonged

to

noble

stock

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

336

among

the

husbandmen of Norway; he was

true to his

from the Middle Ages but he was

best inheritance

more tender and

patient because of his acceptance of

Christianity.

In his love for his wife and daughter,

in his attitude

of sympathetic understanding of his son-

Lavrans

in-law, Erlend,

Few

is

a consistent, heroic father.

passages in modern literature are more impres-

sive

and

the

scene where

beautiful, in conception
this

father and

daughter, go to their mountain


fine stallion,

his

and development, than

Guldsveinen

Kristin,

saeter.

As he

"strong and

fame was spread through

all

the

fiery,

little

rides his

so that

the country round;

but with his master he was gentle as a lamb, and

Lavrans used to say that the horse was dear to him as


a

younger brother"

Kristin,

aged seven, riding on

her father's cloak as a pillion behind, the reader shares


all

joys and excitements of the journey.

The beauty

of the valleys and the pink valerian, in bunches with

fragrant grass, are vividly pictured; so are the visits


to the crofts

and the good wishes for "the

a lily-rose she

is

knightly man."

and looks

More

maid,

as should the child of a

dramatic

Kristin, with Guldsveinen,

little

is

the adventure of

and her fancied vision of

"the dwarf-maiden."
Poetic tradition and colorful setting are interwoven
7 The Bridal Wreath, translated
from the Norwegian of Sigrid
Undset by Charles Archer and J. S. Scott, 1925, p. 11. By permission
of Alfred A. Knopf.

Photograph by Aage Rcmfcldt


SIGRID

UNDSET


SIGRID
in

UNDSET

337

As

the marriage feast of Kristin and Erlend.

dark shadow behind the glamour

is

the knowledge that

the bride, wearing the golden wreath as symbol of her


virginity,

is

the mother of the unborn child, due to the

passion of these lovers, but they believe they have

hidden their deceit from the neighbors and

Erlend

makers.

festival-

bold and magnetic, an adventurer

is

whose impulses bring much happiness and more


morse to him and
In

to Kristin, as his story progresses.

The Mistress of Husaby

the second volume in the

married lovers pass through emotional

trilogy, these

of tense drama.

crises

re-

It

Simon Andresson, the lover

is

due to the

to

whom

efforts

of

was

be-

Kristin

trothed before she knew Erlend, that her husband


relieved, in his
litical intrigue,

is

hour of direful punishment for a po-

and restored to

his family,

although he

must leave the estate of Husaby, forfeited by

his

political adventures.

Kristin

is

mother as well as a wife.

vivid, realistic scene of her first childbirth,

the later years she

is

From

the

throughout

the victim of divided loyalties

devotion to her erratic, dishonored husband and yearning love

Gaute.
their

for her

When

own,

ended,

still

especially

Skule

and

the sons are married, with families of

deeply loving for, after Erlend's

in a scene

to a convent

sturdy sons,

life is

of thrilling tragedy, Kristin retires

and gives her

life,

as a victim of the

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

338

Among

Black Death, after heroic service for others.

memorable passages

the

Cross,

when

in this trilogy is

she gives her wedding ring as a "gift for

As

the soul's weal" of Steinunn.


to

fulfil

what

her promise, tears

this ring

that ring

none the
in

had

really

had wed her

had murmured

against,

The

that in

less she

good days and

her eyes and she recalls

fill

meant

in

her

that she

to,

had raged

at,

had loved
evil,

she offers this ring,

it

so,

life.

"The

life

had complained
at

joyed

and defied
in

it

so,

both

that not one day had there been

when 'twould not have seemed hard

to give

it

back to

God, nor one grief that she could have foregone with8

out regret."

The passage quoted above is a good example of


Sigrid Undset's blending of human joys and griefs, her
balanced portrayal of the sane philosophy

may

see life in retrospect.

literary form,

It

is,

which one

also, typical of

her

combining simplicity and harmony of

words with thoughts of noble sentiment.

ment of

in

In the judg-

certain critics she has not equalled the dramatic

power of the

trilogy in the tetralogy which has fol-

lowed within more recent years


viken, as

its

of The Axe,

general

title,

The Snake

The Master of Hest-

with the separate volumes

Pit,

In the Wilderness, The

Son Avenger.
8

The

Cross, translated from the

Charles Archer, 1927, pp. 381-382.

Norwegian of Sigrid Undset by

By permission

of Alfred A. Knopf.

SIGRID
It

is

tinctive

the

that

inevitable

charm should be

multiply upon

UNDSET

similar

and lack of sustained pitch of

of the

first

volumes, closes his

very

life in self-

In spite of such minor

sacrifice in the cloisters.

full

interest;

for the hero of the second group of stories,

like Kristin

cisms,

There seem to be occa-

of the trilogy and tetralogy are

endings

dis-

marked, as her books

less

similar types of characters.

the

surprising,

same general motives and with

the

sional repetitions

author's

339

criti-

and others that might be made, the novels are

of

vital,

human problems;

they

are

vivid

medieval history and legends, and absorbing

in

in their

They may be read singly or in sereader who uses the latter method gains

character studies.

quence but the

the true valuation of the author's

skill in

development

of character.

The Master of Hestviken is Olav Audunsson and his


wife is Ingunn, a marked contrast to Kristin in perand courage.

sonality

Lavrans was of the


with

events

is

soil.

of Norwegian

from one period

a lover of the sea, as

is

His

Sharing with Olav

ventures.
acter,

Olav

life

story

history
in

is

interwoven

and commercial

development of char-

to another,

is

Eirik.

The

latter

supposed to be the son of Olav but he was really the

child of

Ingunn by the lover Teit, the Icelander,

Olav had
soul.

killed.

For

He

inherited weakness of

whom

body and

a long time, Olav, brooding at times over

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

340

own

his

pated

ill

deed, scorned Eirik, the weakling and

As time

youth.

and loneliness to Olav,

paralysis

whom

however,

passed,

upbraided his half

sister, Cecilia,

pathy for her father,

in

bringing

was Eirik upon

it

he depended for affection;

dissi-

was Eirik who

it

for her lack of sym-

words of wide application

to

every age and race

"God

forgive us both, sister mine

recognize what a
find

true, as

it

man

never

our father was.

we

did

But you

will

you grow older; the best inheritance he

leaves your son

is

the

memory

of his good

name

that

God's reward to the descendants of an upright

is

man.

in

J)

Cecilia,

one of the living creations by

marked

contrast to her "ailing" mother, Ingunn.

this author, is

In

her young maidenhood she seems, to her father, "cool

and chaste as the dew

man

at

dawn; unthinkable that any

could decoy that steadfast child from the right

way."

10

Elemental womanhood, moved by strong

passions of love and hate, was exemplified, however, in


Cecilia

and her

conflicts

between her duty to her father

and her husband, Jorund, and her love for Aslak, the
outcast

whom

she loved.

From

this conflict

tragic sequel, Eirik noted Cecilia's face


9

and

its

and nature had

The Son Avenger by Sigrid Undset, translated from the Norwegian by Arthur C. Chater, 1930, p. 336. By permission of Alfred
A. Knopf.
10 Ibid.,
p. 64.

SIGRID

UNDSET

341

changed sadly; she never laughed and played with her


children,

little

lustre,

and

were

they

her bright eyes had lost their

little

pale-grey

on

pebbles

the

beach." "

The

family and

its

this

theme.

chal type, with


a

It

many

common work

form the

is

a large family of the patriar-

kin and servants, yet

all

united by

for the welfare of the household and

When

small community.

Olav goes on

his crusading

expeditions by sea, as far as England, he

manor house and

return to his

basis of

her situations and dialogue cluster

this author's novels;

about

interrelations

glad to

is

the simplicity of life

there, in contrast with the strange, tangled scenes in

medieval London.

Sometimes,

in

the

reading,

pages seem crowded with details of the daily


repetitions of the

same background of

fields

life,

and

of simple incidents, yet, in the large, these are


into

making such

No

hills,

woven

detail could well be omitted in

a perfect setting.

The movement

for Sigrid Undset's novels require

their reading

hour

the

complete "back curtain" for the action and

character studies.

the

is

a season" for

progress ever towards her distinct

goal of character development.

Through

the church

comes the peace that follows the scenes of


turmoil and remorse for evil deeds
164.

slow

and assimilation, rather than a hurried

but there

11 Ibid., p.

is

spiritual

yet the author

is

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

342

not an optimist alone; she never veils the shadows on


life;

for she says, through the words of Eirik, "With-

out sin no

man

goes through

life."

12

What

Selma Lagerlof and Sigrid Undset!


in

temperament and

literary products

two women who have won the Nobel

contrasts

between these

prize.

The com-

parison was pronounced in 1930 when, within the same


year,

two volumes were published, The Son Avenger

by Sigrid Undset and The Ring of the Lowenskolds by

The first volume mentioned was a


human mistakes and sufferings, lightened

Selma Lagerlof.
tense tale of

by gleams of family
last; the latter

was a

hearted sketches,
optimism.

and forgiveness, at the

affection

collection of cheerful, almost gay-

whimsical

characters

and assured

Miss Lagerlof has written more serious

The Story of Gosta Berling, Lilliecrona's


and The Outcast, as has been shown in a previ-

fiction, like

Home

ous chapter, but her later

work

is

in

happy mood,

filled

with folklore of her native Sweden, her characters

developed with sympathetic insight through situations


that are often friendly and droll rather than tense.

Both of these women

novelists

have stressed the home

as the basic factor in their novels and tales; both have


left

world literature

in their

debt for graphic, effective

portrayal of racial traditions and strongly visioned


characters. Sigrid
12 Ibid.,
p. 337.

Undset lacks the spontaneous humor

SIGRID
a trait of

Selma Lagerlof.

that

is

and

sterile griefs, in its

pensating

UNDSET

343

Life, in

richness

its

moods of depression but com-

moods of hope and

heroic purpose,

re-

is

flected in their fiction.

As

a writer of historical novels, Sigrid

Undset has

achieved success attained by only a few.

demonstrated her

ability to project

She has

human emotions

and problems of the twentieth century, of any age and


race, into an

atmosphere of seven centuries ago and

maintain the perfect consistency of past and present.

For

fifteen years she studied

Middle Ages.
nation.

She

history of the

a realist with a dramatic imagi-

She never flinches from showing the truth of

sowing and reaping


be evaded; she
tion

is

Norwegian

is

fundamental

truths that cannot

a firm believer in remorse

as chastening influences

in

and

retribu-

the development of

character, purified by religion. She has a creative grasp

of backgrounds and

With
full

human

relations.

these achievements in her past and years of

vigor and aspiration seemingly before her, she

Her

one of the dominating writers of this century.


progress has been steady rather than rapid but

been an advance
craftsmanship.
story, in

1907,

in

is

it

has

both creative qualities and literary

One has only to compare her first


Fru Martha Oulie, or even Jenny of

four years later, with the trilogy and tetralogy of

medieval Norway, to realize her cumulative

skill.

It

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

344

would take

photograph album to contain

a large

women and

the men,

all

children that surround Kristin,

the strong, enduring wife of Erlend, the erratic hus-

band; or those that

The Snake

live

In

Pit,

through the pages of The Axe,

the

The Son

and

Wilderness

Avenger, companions of Olav Audunsson, the


patient husband of Ingunn,

virile,

weak and unhappy from

her maidenhood to her death.

George N. Shuster,
6,

In both, the keynote

Letter.

toned

sin

more of
her

Pit

The

to

suffering

is

March

for

Scarlet

from una-

but Sigrid Undset has more of the mystical,

the saga form, while she

realism

Digest

The Commonweal

The Snake

compares

1929,

in

than

is

even more grim

Hawthorne.

International

In

the

Sigrid Undset's traits, entitled

a masterly

in

Literary

Book Review, March,

Hanna Astrup Larsen wrote

Womanhood/'

is

1923,

summary of

"A Norwegian

Epic of

She found suggestions of Knut

Ham-

sun in certain resolute convictions about passion, disillusionment and suffering.

No moralist,

Sigrid

Undset

uses conscious methods to preach her messages.

She

does not become dogmatic about her characters or

human problems which

they face.

If she allowed her

creative art to err into preachment, she

would never

win, as she has done, the largest votes in her favor of

those given to-day to any


colleges for

modern author,

young men and women.

at

many

Youth responds

SIGRID

UNDSET

345

to her tense, dramatic pages and her graphic, changing

characters.

They

are so real to readers because, as

Miss Larsen says: "She

lives

with her people and

makes us experience with them

the struggles through

which their view of

life

message of the book

is

is

born

in travail."

changes and develops.

The

never a foregone conclusion;

it

13

The Wild Orchid (1931) is a novel of modern


times, from 1905 to 19 14.
It develops slowly, with

much subconscious method,

the experiences of Paul

Selmer as youth and young man.

and

his speculations

about

threads of the plot.


character.

The author

life

His two love


and

His mother,

religion, are the


Juli,

title

is

a strong

has not achieved the sustained,

dramatic power of her medieval romances.


with

affairs

This book,

symbolizing "earthly love," will be followed

by a sequel, The Burning Bush, to reveal "heavenly


love."
13

"Sigrid Undset," by

Hanna Astrup

Larsen, 1929,

p. 3.

CHAPTER XXII
THOMAS MANN AND
The

prize for

"MODERN

HIS

CLASSIC"

1929 has been awarded:

Mann, Thomas (German) born 1875:

"principally for his

great novel Buddenbrooks, that in the course of the years has


received an increasing, constant recognition as one of the classic

works of contemporary

literature."

For the fourth time


in literature,

It

the honor

in the history

was given

to

of Nobel prizes

Germany

had been awarded for philosophical works

dolf Eucken, in 1908, to Paul

Heyse for

1929.

in

to

Ru-

his tales,

two

years later, and again, in two years, to Gerhart Haupt-

mann, especially for


Sunken

his

idealistic,

poetic

Seventeen years passed before

Bell.

German

again given to a

Thomas Mann was

The

play

was

it

writer but the choice of

acclaimed

In his

in all countries.

spoken and written words he had won the favor of


critics,

both

conservative

and progressive

in

their

literary creeds.

During the war years, and for nearly


thereafter, there

had been

man language and


1

decade

a tendency to neglect Ger-

literature in academic courses,

Inscription with the Nobel Prize

346

Award

in Literature, 1929.

in

THOMAS MANN
many

schools and universities

With

countries and America.

347

European

of certain
the

award

to

Thomas

Mann came

a feeling of rejoicing that "the open door"

was

proclaimed,

again

that

and

students

general

readers would again appreciate the literary contributions of

Germany

readings,
Schiller

for

to the past and present.

the

younger

Revival of

Goethe,

of

generation,

and Heine were among the encouraging signs

of the time;

German

new biographies and

estimates of specific

writers were found on the

publications

notable books

like

and Lewis R. Browne's That

of current

lists

Emil Ludwig's Goethe

Man

Heine.

Hauptmann and Sudermann represented the older,


more realistic types of German drama and fiction.
They belonged to the naturalistic school of the pre-war
period, exampled in Hauptmann's play, Before Dawn,
and Sudermann's novel,
general time belongs
first

Dame

To

same

the

Thomas Mann's Buddenbrooks,


This novel, truly called "a

published in 1901.

modern

Care.

classic," stands at the first gate to his literary

fame; at the other, more recently constructed gate,

The Magic Mountain,

the masterly result of

years of study of character.


published,

appeared

in
in

translation,

original

It
in

form,

was begun

1927,

in

is

many

19 13 and

although

Der Zauberberg,

it

had
three

years earlier.
In Buddenbrooks the reader will find

many

resem-

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

348

blances to incidents in the family history of

Mann.
a

Like the

fictional family,

woolen draper

Nuremberg.

in

Thomas

he descended from

the city of Durer,

rather than

Like old Johann Buddenbrooks, his an-

cestor rode in a four-horse coach, like that described in


his story.

In large measure the vivid, kindly portrait

Hanno Buddenbrooks resembles the childhood


Thomas Mann. The birthplace of the novelist was
of

Lubeck, June

were

citizens of political

the

independence as well as com-

His grandfather was a

mercial repute.

at

His immediate forefathers

1875.

6,

of

Buddenbrook character, and

consul, as

was

a liberal in his political

tenets.

The

father of

a senator of the

Hanseatic League and twice mayor of

capital of the

Lubeck.

Thomas Mann was

For him,

as

senator, the

for the fictional

With this infamily was a yet more sig-

troops lowered their colors in salute.


heritance

from

his father's

through his mother.

nificant influence

shown not alone

Mann

in

the character and

Its effects are

work of Thomas

but in the great achievements of his brother,

Heinrich.

Daughter of

who had married


was educated

in

German

planter in Brazil

a Creole wife, Julia

Brun-da Silva

Lubeck and became deeply

adopted country.

loyal to her

She never forgot, however, the sur-

roundings of her childhood

in

Rio de Janeiro, and she

often described these scenes of romantic

memory

to

THOMAS MANN
her sons.

Without

349

question, the family aptitude for

business and political leadership

was submerged,

sons, beneath a vigorous mentality

in the

and urge toward

creative writing.

As
dull

Thomas Mann seemed sometimes


Early,
his North German teachers.

a schoolboy,

and slow to

he showed delight

music and

in

young Hanno Buddenbrooks.


later
his

book of

did the

in legends, as

He

loved dogs, as his

Like

affectionate reminiscence testifies.

young counterpart

in

the novel, he inherited a toy

puppet theatre which gave him much delight; into


life,

also,

came the

kindly, understanding services of

who

family servant

his

furnished the model for Ida

Jungmann in Buddenbrooks. The house of his fathers


was much like the ancestral home of his fictional
family.

While he was
showing a
school

in

fertile

magazine,

"Paul Thomas. "

name was

tributed to this
in the

school at Lubeck, he began to write,

imagination

in his contributions to a

Monatsschrift

The

poem,

first

fur

Kunst,

signed

writing that bore his

"Zweimaliger Abschied,"

magazine

in

May, 1893, an d

own
con-

reprinted

Leipzig magazine, Gesellschaft, the next year.

The poet has never been wholly

lost in the novelist.

His father died when the lad was

fifteen

family fortunes were found to be ebbing.

was nineteen he and

his

mother went

to

and the

When

Munich

he

to live.

THE NOBEL

350

PRIZE WINNERS

According to family tradition he was destined to go


into business

be

but

to retrieve the family fortunes

on

all

might

he never showed enthusiasm for the plan.

Patiently but heartlessly, he


office in

it

worked

in a fire insurance

the daytime, studying and writing at night and

other possible occasions.

He

varied writing by

By happy
and more money by

drawing with originality and good execution.

won some

chance he

publishing his

He

first fiction,

Ge fallen,

Hochschule,

making researches

eagerly

literature

and

dream

many

Then came

art.

For

history,

fulfilment of a

the

a year there he

Now

imagination and happiness.

came

in

years that had seemed unattainable

a visit to Italy.

heritance

1894.

in

the office and began daily study at the

left

for

recognition

to the fore

his

expanded

the maternal

in
in-

keen enjoyment and

quick responsiveness to southern skies and seas, to the

romance of Italian
this

life

atmosphere which

scribed to him.

and
his

art.

He

felt at

own

result of years

family history, which was

written with sincerity and careful revision.

of

Thomas Mann was

readers.

actuates

The

own

work;

future

assured for himself and his

This conscientious quality of Thomas


all his

in

mother had so often de-

Buddenbrooks was the

of reflection upon his

home

it is

his loyalty to the

Mann

motto of

family, as that of the elder Consul Buddenu


brooks:
son, attend with zeal, to thy business by

his

My

THOMAS MANN

351

day; but do none that hinders thee from thy sleep at


night."

Buddenbrooks had

fifty editions

in

German

within

now reached more than one


hundred editions, with many translations. A part of it
was written in Italy, with the joyful zest which Thomas
its first

Mann

decade and

it

has

there experienced, mingled with his leisurely de-

light in southern

a distinctly

beauty and glamour.

German

Inevitably,

tions.

generations

crises

it

and

as a literary portrayal of

their

comparison has been made

however,

compared with John Gals-

is

is

conflicts

in

emotional

Another novel to which

and economic changes.

of All Flesh

is,

saga of a family for three genera-

worthy^ The Forsyte Saga,


three

It

Samuel Butler's The

Way

but Buddenbrooks preceded both of

these masterworks by a few years.

For approximately seventy


allowed to watch the daily

life

years,

the

reader

is

and transformation of

About 1830, occurred those


the mansion of "Papa" Buddenbrook,

the Buddenbrooks family.


first

scenes in

"in the rambling old house in

Meng

Street which the

firm of

Johann Buddenbrook had acquired some time

since"

near the beginning of the

new century

take

place the final events of poignant farewell to the later,

elegant mansion of
2

Thomas Buddenbrook when

his

Buddenbrooks by Thomas Mann, translated from the German by


II, p. 93.
By permission of Alfred A. Knopf.

H. T. Lowe-Porter, Vol.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

352

widow, Gerda, bereft of husband and

home

son,

Hanno,

re-

Amsterdam.

Gerda,

the beautiful violinist, had never fitted into the

German

turns to her old father's

in

Between those dates are crowded incidents

family.

in

the lives of the family, those of direct kinship and by

The book

marriage.

and often crowded,


chapters has been

The
tive

It

rich,

division into brief


critics

and

re-

may, at times, destroy the con-

effect

but

chief merit of the novel


it

The

commended by some

and dramatic

power;

movement,

long, slow in

in details.

gretted by others.
tinuity

is

it

makes easy reading.

is its

amazing, sustained

has no lapse of interest and yet this cumula-

grasp upon mind and sympathy of the reader

is

attained by sincere purpose, by fine and varied characterizations, without

any melodrama, any mysteries or

sex appeal.

There are so many vivid


cult to choose a

few for

personalities that

special

outstanding; her death scene


pelling passages in the

who

suffers so

riage,

who

many

tries to

is

story.

"Mamma"

comment.

Buddenbrooks, typical Frau of her

class

and time,

more

Tony, the daughter,

disillusionments in love and mar-

be true to family standards, and

Seldom have two brothers

unlike than

is

one of the most com-

keeps her courage and efficiency to the end,


character.

it is diffi-

Thomas,

the consul,

representative of the family

in

is

a strong

in fiction

who

is

been

the sturdy

the second generation

THOMAS MANN
in

353

business and politics and, by contrast, Christian, lazy

and

aesthetic,

making an easy

He

shortened nerves."

its

the

is

alibi

of his "left side and

a reproach

and a

Buddenbrooks of traditional type but he

by the children and he appreciates


threads

in

life

members of

many

trial to

loved

is

of the finer

that escape the stalwart, conventional

the family.

The words of Christian remain in the reader's


memory; they seem at times to register the author's
own sentiments about the hard-boiled, self-righteous
egotists, as if Thomas Mann had sympathy with "the
u
revolt and escape'* note of later novelists: You have
made a position for yourself in life; and there you
stand,

disturb

and push everything away which might possibly


your equilibrium

equilibrium
you.

But

Thomas,

the

is

Oh,

priety, this poise

moment

most precious thing

isn't

it

for

in the

am

sick of all this tact

and refinement

sick to

your

world to
in

life,

and pro-

death of

In Buddenbrooks, and the later fiction by

Mann, we

for

most precious thing

the
I

it."

Thomas

find not alone vivid character portraits but

varied scenes that

show customs and

daily life of this typical

German

racial traits in the

family.

Sometimes

the background changes to Italy or Switzerland, as in


the novelette,

"Death

Magic Mountain
3 Ibid.,

in

Venice," and parts of

The

and, in such scenes, the local color

Vol. II, p. 183.

is

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

354

accurate and well blended.

of the Christmas festival,


erations,

in

is

One of the best descriptions


in Germany of the past gen-

Chapter VIII of the second volume of

Buddenbrooks.

The surprises and excitements of little Hanno form


the human background, with the reactions of other
members of

the family equally vivid, in certain por-

The coming

tions of the narration.


in his fur coat

for

of "the old man,"

with his sack of apples and gilded nuts

"good children who say

their prayers," the singing

by the choir and reading of Scriptures by Frau Consul,

Hanno

the joy of

puppet theatre, and the

in his toy

culmination of the three days of rejoicing with the

dinner and
all

its

abundance of typical foods and wines,

these incidents are

woven

author's sentiment and literary

With

less

undertone,

which

the

skill.

personal reflection and with more ironic

Thomas Mann wrote

Konigliche Hoheit

translated as Royal Highness:

is

German Court
The setting is
of

into a pageant by this

capital

mosphere

is

by A.

Life,
in

Cecil

Curtis

Novel of
(1926).

Albrecht Strasse, the main artery

city

of

Prussia.

The

military

at-

maintained throughout the story, from

the opening dialogue of the two officers to the wistful

ending of the romantic

tale.

Klaus Heinrich, with the

withered arm, younger brother of Albrecht II and heir

presumptive to the throne, plays the major part

in this

l\mt and Carry Hess

THOMAS MANN


THOMAS MANN
story of court

Klaus

with

life,

its

355

social rigors

and scandals.

often in conflict with the traditional cere-

is

monies and expectations of his family for his future.

The
Irma

sequel

whom

that of romance for the prince and

is

he loves but of dismay for the formal

adherents of court

may

convention, which

kind to

all

life.

classes

keynote of revolt from

be cruel, and the desire to be

of people,

voiced in Irma's

is

words: "But we are so stupid and so lonely, Prince


on the peaks of humanity, as Doctor Ueberbein used
always to say
life."
little

To
Irma

and

we know

absolutely nothing of

this lament, the Prince


!

What was

it

answers: "Nothing,

then which at last gave you

confidence in me, and brought us to study so practically

Knows he nothing

the public weal?

That

of love?
ness and

Love

There

an

austere happiness."

a fine collie, Percival, in

is

this

Herman George
dog

is

A Man

the

Among

Scheffauer (1930).

stories ever written, about

is

The

maintained, with bits of

of

Royal Highness.

his lighter, self-

It is

one of the

Bashan, a short-

intimate, affection-

humor and

incident

A Novel of German Court Life, translated from


Thomas Mann by A. Cecil Curtis, 1926, p. 333. By

Royal Highness:

German

High-

and His Dog, translated by

haired setter and his master.


ate tone

who knows

author has been a devoted, un-

derstanding friend of dogs.


revealing books

life

shall be our business in future;

As boy and man,

best

of

permission of Alfred A. Knopf.


THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

3$6

that entertain readers, old

and young.

Adventure and

sympathy, with whimsical scenes and a sane philosophy,


are

blended

Bashan" and

countryside

story

his activities

and

the chase

this

in

"How We

of

on the hunting grounds,

his daily life.

in

Acquired

Much

in

love of the

reflected in these short chapters about

is

Bashan, his former owner (Anastasia of the hillside


tavern) and the slow process of his development in his

new home

into a hunting

As an example
a better than

dog of

of a novella,

"Death

pressions of Italy

in

it

Venice."

fine mettle.

would be hard to
It

find

embodies the im-

upon the author, both the sensuous

beauty and romance, varied by the more tense experiences of life as unfolded in the story.
is

perfect and

viduals.

its

Its

characters are both types and indi-

In the same volume with this masterly

translation,

is

the

technic

tale, in

more personal sketch of "Tonio

The words of Tonio are interpreted by


friendly critics of Thomas Mann as his own expression
of the occult, deterministic forces of his own being
the unalterable fate that made him a writer.
Kroger."

These short

stories

show advance,

in a literary art,

over earlier tales which are being translated into English in

Nine of these are

these later days.

Children and Fools, translated by


Scheffauer (1928, 1930)

The

collected as

Herman George

initial tale is

"Disorder

and Sorrow," originally entitled "Early Sorrow," a


THOMAS MANN
silhouette of family

eighteen,

Children of seventeen and

life.

"the Big Ones," talk with

their parents,

357

and

about

the Ancients/' while the "Little

Ones"

Anna," the nurse.

Very

eat in the nursery with "Blue

kindly relations between the father and his children are


revealed, especially the gentleness of the parent to-

wards

Lorie when she wanted grown-up

little

Max

"to

be her brother," because he was devoted to her in the


dance.
scene

Psychological,

where

Lorelei."

Max

as well

as

emotional,

comes to "say good-night" to

the

is

"little

Post-war Germany, with changes fraught

by the years of

conflict

and hardship, forms the

for this tale and others in the collection;

setting

some are

sa-

"The Infant Prodigy"; others are fantastic


and grotesque, exampled in "The Wardrobe," the
tiric, like

story of a

Before

man with an absurd obsession.


Thomas Mann finished his master-novel

these later years,

The Magic Mountain, he wrote

essays with themes

Three of these

of

from biography and philosophy.

essays,

collected

and translated by

H. T. Lowe-Porter

(1929) include "Goethe and


Tolstoi," "Frederic the Great and the Grand Coalition,"

double

and "An Experience


comparisons

Goethe and

Schiller,

in

in the Occult."

the

first

essay,

There are
contrasting

Tolstoi and Dostoevski.

philosophic conclusion reads thus

"And

The

to all eternity

the truth, power, calm and humility of nature, will be

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

358

in conflict

with the disportionate, fevered and dogmatic

presumption of

The

spirit."

third essay in the collection cited above,

Experience in the Occult," reappears


chapter

in

of

in

"An

another form

The Magic Mountain.

Various

attempts to explain the motif of this novel have been

made by

critics;

sundry comparisons have been made

Regarded

to other noteworthy works of fiction.


allegory,

me

it

as an

has been likened to Pilgrim* s Progress; to

seems far more comparable to Rolland's Jean-

it

Christophe, with inevitable differences in setting and

Both books,

modes.

literary

society at the critical

however,

moment when

looming on the horizon.

Rolland

more dogmatic; he made

well as

portrayed

a great

war was

more

poetic as

is

his

appeal as a

moralist for a better understanding between two races


that such a catastrophe might be averted.

Mann

is

a photographer

you prefer to so regard

human

nature

who

Thomas

using an X-ray machine,

if

his introspective analysis of

records

the

psychological

and

emotional reactions of his characters to this period of


unrest.

He

probes beneath the surface to get the

workings of the senses, nerves and souls of


jects;

he recreates the

High up on

spirit

his sub-

of this age.

mountain, away from challenging

Three Essays, translated from the German of Thomas Mann by


H. T. Lowe-Porter, 1929, p. 54. By permission of Alfred A. Knopf.
6

THOMAS MANN
voices

and distractions of urban

359

and women are grouped and photographed

How they

situations.

and death
this

react to

for they are

sanitarium

modern

in

varied

ideas about life

possibly facing death in

all

how they

men

civilization, these

react to each other, are the

threads of the slender plot of this great novel.


friendly

Foreword, the author prepares

In a

his readers for

a long, meticulous story, with elements of legend


reality blended, laid in the past "before the

a certain crisis shattered

sciousness

story of

and

Hans

left a

its

way through

deep chasm behind

Castorp,

who

and

epoch when

life

it."

and conIt is the

journeys light-heartedly

to this retreat in the Alps, to visit a relative for three

weeks and stays there, imprisoned by mental and


physical

or

return for

psychological

how long? Not

bars

which prevent

his

seven days nor seven weeks,

nor seven months: "Heaven forbid

it

should be seven

years!"

With

glowing imagination

his

always respond to
the journey

become

fine scenery,

the author describes

and the surroundings.

relative after

environment

in this

mountain

adjusts himself to his fate

and

to

Time and Space

two days away from familiar

experiences with travellers.

panions

and gusto which

share

air; such are universal

Gradually,

and begins
their

Hans Castorp

to study his

distinctive

com-

interests.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

360

Through

upon

flection

narrative

From

his reactions, in part,

patients

listens

philosophical

his

carefree youth

different
cynic,

and Mynheer Peeperkorn,

modern world.

There are minor

incidents which impress the reader

Hans

the sensibility and annoyance of

ming of doors by the Russian


little gifts

me-not blue,"

lady,

to the slam-

Madame

Chauchat,

and sympathy for the parents of Leila

Gerngross, the young

"with eyes of true forget-

girl,

who was

which Hans and


to the

of the

assimilates and balances these

the sensualist

the

profound

Naphta, the

scientist,

Settembrini, the

views

the

to

the

conclusions.

Hans becomes

Behrens,
humanist,
and he

ideas of the

re-

problems, the author weaves his

draws

and

He

thinker.

life's

and more careful

and the expeditions

dying,

took with Karen Karstedt

his cousin

Kurhaus and then to the graveyard.

Vivid

at-

mosphere of changeful October forms the background


for

"Whims

of Mercurius" in the

first

volume.

dramatic are scenes at Krokowski's seances


Questionable."
clinics

this

in

More

"Highly

Other passages suggest pathological

for almost every phase of

Magic Mountain

and

life

is

enacted on

the reader watches, with

anxious eyes as does Hans, for the report of the clinical

thermometer on

critical

that of his comrades.

what they read and

days

What
discuss

in his

own

experience and

they wear, what they eat,

all

these details of daily

THOMAS MANN

361

living are told with jimple, often with stark, realism,

but they form a composite panorama.


Into the detached
u

The Thunderbolt,

novel closes.

It

life

,,

of this mountain retreat comes

the shock of world war, as the

was "the deafening explosion of long-

Herr

gathering magazines of passion and spleen. "

Settembrini had forewarned and urged international

The

understanding.

laconic sentences,

tense,

yet

an

is

or

Hans Castorp
know "a dream of

story of

of this novel, told

last scene

artistic

is it its

love?

ending of the

Will he

ending?

Out of

in

this universal

feast of death, out of this extremity of fever, kindling

the rain-washed evening sky to a fiery glow


that

Love one day

When

one

shall

mount ?"

finishes this novel,

may

it

be

time and space for

the reader seem to be submerged beneath a feeling of

Realism gives way before a subtle idealism.

mystery.

Thomas Mann

To

teacher."

when

denies any rank as a

am

life

and

for pressing reasons, in preserving

in justifying it."

to both writers he

marks of

was conferred upon him, he

only a dreamer and a doubter, very-

much absorbed, and

my

epic

savant or a

the dean of the University of Bonn,

the degree of doctor

wrote: "I

may

Like Goethe and Tolstoi

well be

compared

and philosophic writing.

he

Withal, he

has
is

The Magic Mountain (Der Zauberberg) translated from the


of Thomas Mann by H. T. Lowe-Porter, 1927, Vol. II, p.

German
By
900.

permission of Alfred A. Knopf.

"

THE NOBEL

362

PRIZE WINNERS

lover and an interpreter of humanity.

home, where

Munich

In his

and graciousness to

his wife gives wit

his

household, and his six children add good cheer, he leads


a life of quiet habits

and deep, kindly thoughts, which

are embodied in his words to visitors and in his writings,

which speak to tens of thousands

His knowledge of modern economics

distant places.
is

more

in yet

as vital as that of art

and

When Thomas Mann

went to Stockholm to receive

Nobel award

the

literature.

person and to make, as

in

the cus-

is

tom, a speech of acceptance, he showed the modesty

and geniality of
ism.

He

gloriously

his nature, tinctured

himself in

finds

by a real patriot-

"a situation turbulent,

revolutionary and

disconcerting,

festive.

Assuring the King and his other auditors that he


speech-maker

my

nature

is

epic,

says: "I have always striven for


well as art."
lay

my

men

is

not dramatic"

symmetry

no

he

in life as

Then, with deep sentiment, he adds, "I

prize at the feet of

my

the country and people with

kind feel closer sympathy

now

my
whom I

country and

country-

and

than we did during the

thunderous period of their expanding power."


has a patron saint,

it

is

my

Sebastian,

bound

If he

to the stake

but smiling.
It

ary

seems almost anticlimactic to turn from

Translated extracts
15, 1930.

may

be found in

this epical

The Living Age

for Febru-

THOMAS MANN

363

Thomas
by H. T.

novel to the most recently translated tale by

Mann, Mario and

the Magician f translated

Lowe-Porter (1931). It is a fantastic, tragic story


of a hunchback and a tormenting magician. There is
psychological insight and melodramatic action as the

hypnotist deceives Mario, causing him to


a hideous creature,

make

under impression that he

is

love to
caress-

ing a beauty, and unfolding the hidden affections of his


distorted being.
irony.

Italy,

scribed

with

The ending

is

tragic,

the background of

author's

the

with a touch of

this

usual

story,

vividness.

is

de-

Minor

Roman

aristocracy share the

beauty and social indulgences of

this fashionable resort.

characters

among

"Symmetry of
these,

the

life

and

To

literature I"

and to impress others with the value of such a

goal, has been the crowning contribution of

Mann

achieve

to

modern

the false notes of

He

culture.

Western

saw

clearly,

Thomas

and grimly,

culture before the war, the

diseases of soul and mind, no less than body, the in-

and perversions of healthy

trigues

shown

in

in that

The Magic Mountain.

sanitarium but

tion outside.
traiture

it

was

living,

as he has

There was morbidity

true to

much of

Throughout the pages of

civiliza-

realistic por-

of diseased natures, there seeps through a

stream of craving for more normal, healthy

living.

CHAPTER

XXIII

THE FIRST AMERICAN


WINNER OF THE PRIZE

SINCLAIR LEWIS:
The

prize of 1930 has been

awarded:

Lewis, Sinclair (American) born 1885: "for his great and


living art of painting

wit and humor."

The

life,

with a talent for creating types with

history of

American

literature

may

be divided

The

into three periods, with elastic proportions.

first,

during the years of colonization and revolt, registered

many

writings imitative in form, from which a few

only have survived as historical treasures.


era,

one of self-congratulation, was

erally

crude,

in

exulted that they

output.

Editors

had chosen

The second

prolific,

of

but gen-

schoolbooks

extracts "largely

works of American genius," undaunted by the fact

from
that,

with exceptions of three or four writers, the marks of


"genius" were not found.
fittingly,

To

this

the query of Sydney Smith,

period belongs,

"Whoever

reads

an American book?"

The

third period, that of later years of the nine-

teenth and the decades of the twentieth century, has


1

Inscription with Nobel Prize

Award
364

in Literature, 1930.

SINCLAIR LEWIS
produced a long

365

of writers of uneven rank

list

several

of them have been read in foreign countries, with


verse estimates by

Some notable

critics.

di-

writers of this

era have reflected influences of literary leaders abroad,

American themes and standards;

as well as loyalty to

have made

others

American scene" the

To

this latter

and

satire

of "the

self-criticism

basic quality of their expression.

classperhaps as

belongs Sinclair Lewis.

its

For the

pioneer
first

exponent-

time in thirty

years of existence the Nobel Foundation has awarded


a prize in literature to an

American author,

to this

creator of "types with wit and humor," that have be-

come familiar characters

He
ruary
the

was born
7,

to readers in

languages.

Sauk Center, Minnesota, on Feb-

in

Sauk Center was a

1885.

many

typical village of

Middle West, inhabited by twenty-five hundred peo-

ple.

Life was characterized by the intimate contacts

among them and


ment.

It

a general feeling of

smug

content-

photographed, with a few imaginative

is

touches, in the

Gopher

Prairie of

Main

Street.

From

both parents, Sinclair Lewis inherited Yankee blood.

His ancestors

in

Connecticut and

various occupations
doctors.

New York

followed

they were farmers, merchants and

His father was a country doctor and

mother's father belonged to the same profession.


uncle

and a brother have

calling.

As

also

his

An

followed the family

a lad, he rode with his father about the

THE NOBEL

366

PRIZE WINNERS

countryside and even assisted, in minor cases, in giving

handing out instruments.

anaesthetics or

At

the town school he rebelled

somewhat against

"the wooley portraits of Lowell and Longfellow/' and

he revealed "fantastic ideas"

in

favor of the teaching

of French and rejection of certain Biblical "truths,"


like that

of Jonah and the whale.

his determination not "to follow the

the University of Minnesota.

More

defiant

was

crowd" and go to

A business man in

Sauk

Center admonished against this "fantastic idea" by saying to young Lewis, "If you go off to one of these

eastern colleges, you'll get a lot of expensive tastes

and not be able to earn one cent more money."

With
to Yale

the approval of his father, Sinclair Lewis went

where

his chief interest

seemed to be

in writing;

he became editor of the Yale literary magazine.


his

To

companions and instructors he seemed "different,"

not of the usual mold of collegian of that time.

Henry

Seidel Canby, in

of Lewis's

life,

says

commenting upon

"He came

this period

to Yale as an

who soon made a


among his classmates,

Dr.

awkward

but able youngster

reputation for

literary ability

but

who from

and an

individual-

first
ist.

to last remained a rebel, a critic

That has been

his history ever since,

and when, a

few years after he was graduated, he told


2

Sinclair Lewis by Oliver Harrison, p.

court,

Brace

&

Co.

5.

By

his friends

permission of Har-

SINCLAIR LEWIS

367

that he proposed to write, sooner or later, the great

American novel, he was not belying either


fidence or his ability.

his self-con-

Before he graduated, however, Lewis decided that


he would exchange academic knowledge-gathering for

some experiences

At

in real life.

year, he left college

and joined the

had been started by Upton

that

Hall,

rather

New

the end of his junior


socialistic

colony

Sinclair at Helicon

The promoters called it Utopian


than socialistic. The experience did not bring
Jersey.

him what he anticipated

in satisfaction so

he

left the

colony and lived, for a brief period, with a literary


friend, in a

cheap

district

of Manhattan.

He

wrote

jokes for Life and Puck and such verse and prose as he

and much more

could market

He

had a temporary job as

atlantic Tales, a

that he could not

sell.

assistant editor of Trans-

magazine now defunct.

For the

third

time he took passage on a steamer to get adventure


this time to

Panama, as he had been twice to England

on cattle-steamers, during college vacations.


to get a job on the

Panama Canal

He

tried

but failed and

turned to Yale for another year, graduating

in

re-

the

class of 1908.

His

failures "to sell his

his determination to
flinched.
8

He

goods" continued

become a

first

while

rank writer never

tried various editorial positions, one in

The Americqn-Scandinavian Review, February,

193 1.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

368

Waterloo, Iowa, another

Washington

but

San Francisco,

in

he did not stay long

With William Rose Benet he


borrowed one hundred
in

any place.

in

lived for six months, on a

dollars, in a portable

They cooked and

California.

a third in

fished,

bungalow

and wrote,

but Sinclair Lewis sold just one of his dozens of short


stories,

poems and other writings

-a

joke to Judge,

4,

Then he returned to New York for another "try."


One of the longest services in which Lewis remained
was

in the editorial office of the

Company,

New

in

York, for two years, receiving, at

a salary of twelve

first,

Frederick A. Stokes

and

This was from i9ioto 191 2.

a half dollars a week.

One

of the most inter-

esting results of this association with the publishing

house was the

issue, in

19 12, of a book,

now

out of

print, that

he wrote under the pseudonym of

Graham."

Hike and the Aeroplane was the

was

oldest

"Edwin and

often overlooked

Lewis's

It

rative, a story
Griffin,

title; it

in a recital
is

It

Isabel Lewis, the author's

This book

friends."

fiction.

Tom

two colors by Arthur Hutchins.

illustrated in

dedicated to

is

is

significant

and

too

of the development of

written in simple, graphic nar-

about an interesting boy of sixteen, Hike

with straight shoulders that were going to

become very broad."

It is significant, also,

because

it

contained a prophecy, written nearly twenty years ago,


4

Harrison, op.

cit.,

p.

n.

SINCLAIR LEWIS

369

of what would become the thrilling experiences of boy-

hood

and manhood

The

setting

trail that

is

in the

immediate future.

on the California coast,

on a

first

overhung Canyon Diable, below Monterey.

Hike, whose real name was Gerald, had been leader of


the freshman football

Academy.

team

at Santa Benicia Military

"Hike, Jerry, Hike

1" the

boys had shouted

made the sixty-yard run that won a great


game and the name had stayed by him on his cross
country races. His comrade had the name of Torrington Darby but, naturally, that had to be rechristened
at him, as he

to a schoolboy nickname,

"Pood."

How

inventor,

Martin

how

and

his

was "Poodle," or

these two boys surprised the half-crazy


Priest, with his incomplete aeroplane,

they interested Lieutenant Adeler and the

Board of Aviation

in this "tetrahedral,"

tures that the boys

had

flying in the Hustle,

hour,

how Hike was

in

Army

the adven-

helping the inventor and

one hundred and


able to save the

fifty

Widow

miles an

Barston's

rancho from attack by the revolutionists because he


could use the aeroplane as "a watchtower"
dents
tale

and

by

The

many more

'Tom Graham."

such

inci-

are told with gusto in this

editorship of Adventure and of a publishers'

newspaper syndicate, and work as editor and advertising


5

manager for the George H. Doran Company

filled

Book loaned and quoted by kindness of Frederick A. Stokes Co.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

37o

the next few years of the life of Sinclair Lewis.

routine

tasks

eight

hours or more a

dayrepreAt

sented only a part of his mental activities.

and

in

novel,

Our Mr. Wrenn

for adults

Much

had

and

first

which was published by

in

19 14.

His career

in fiction

started.

of the author's

entered into

clair

night,

other possible hours, he was writing his

Harper and Brothers

clerk

Such

own

experience on cattle boats

Our Mr. Wrenn,

the story of a

his fluctuating fortunes.

At

New York

this time, Sin-

Lewis, married to Grace Livingston Hegger, was

Long Island home for his daily


New York office; whUe he commuted he

commuting from

work
wrote

in a

diligently,

his

on odd pieces of paper, while

train neighbors read their

newspapers or talked.

his

The

moderate success of Our Mr. Wrenn encouraged a


second venture which appeared the next year, 19 15,

The Trail of the Hawk. Into this story he introduced


the same motif as in his boy's tale of Hike and the
Aeroplane; the hero was an aviator but not a very
heroic figure, in his flights or his marriage.

wrote The Job

in

which he depicted business women

New York with candor


The

Later he

and

turning point in the

in

insight.
life

of Sinclair Lewis, from

that of journalist and office editor to that of free-lance

summer of 19 15. With his wife


he was vacationing on Cape Cod, largely a pedestrian
writer,

came

in the

SINCLAIR LEWIS

SINCLAIR LEWIS
tour,

when he decided

to the Saturday

accepted,

and a

to write a short story

Evening Post.

he had so often

received

Free Air,

the
in

slips

He

this

for

was

welcomed the sug-

His days of

office

routine were

same journal he contributed

a serial,

which adventures, often droll and

happen to the hero who runs a garage.


facility

it

more stones which were accepted

within three months.

To

his surprise

rejection

from George Horace Lorimer.

over.

To

and send

urging him to write more came

letter

gestion and sent three

371

The

ironic,

author's

and character sketching were demonstrated

in

these lighter tales of his days of apprenticeship.

During these years, while Lewis and


lived in

many

a novelist

author.

places, east

was working

Two

and west, the

in the

his wife

had

real urge to be

mind and ambition of the

winters were passed in Washington and

here he wrote the major part of

Main

fifteen years, since his college vacations,

Street.

For

he had plotted

such a story of a mid-western town, with the lawyer,

Guy

Pollock, as

prospective

title,

its

leading type; he had even chosen a

The Village

Firus.

Three times he had written drafts of


which had been developing

was

it

to

him the

did not expect

doned
6

his

it

would be

cit.,

p.

15.

story

subconscious mind;

novel which he must write. "

He

a "best seller" but he aban-

more remunerative

Harrison, op.

in his

this

story-writing and

worked

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

372

for a year

upon

October, 1920, with the


curiosity

title,

Main

appeared

it

Street,

in

aroused

it

56,000
and was

trans-

German, Dutch, Swedish and French.

The

and challenge and

months, 390,000 copies


lated into

When

book.

this

in

it

sold

in

two years

two

author had somewhat changed his plan for a chief character, as the subtitle of the

book proved: "The Story

Through

of Carol Kennicott."

the temperamental

heroine, and her efforts to introduce a leaven of novelty

and individuality

Prairie, the author told his story, with

and

its

Gopher

into the dull, custom-ridden


its

slight plot

sharp satire.

In this

first

novel of real significance, Sinclair Lewis

proclaimed his special

skill in

accumulating details that

pcrfray his atmosphere, and his "power of mimicry"

which has been exampled well by Walter Lippmann

Lewis

in the study of

in

Men

of Destiny.

He

even better than he describes, the group of

women

at Carol's "party," her maid,

neighbors.
tion

often

the

Henry

Seidel

Canby

book was sprawling

its

brittle

and

composi-

delays and rewritings too


defects of technique.

in its structure, its chief

woman
and the

through her personality became

supercilious.

Yet

it

Dr.

"That

says, with just criticism:

character was a rather brittle intellectual,


criticism sifted

men and

and her envious

In spite of the long period of

perhaps because of
novel had many

mimics,

itself

struck with such deadly

SINCLAIR LEWIS
might at the smug narrowness and
of the American small town that

To

stifling

Main

a term of opprobrium over night."

373
atmosphere

Street

became

escape excess of both laudation and censure after

Main

Street

was published, the author went abroad

By

for a season and there he wrote Babbitt.


verdict, then

than was

and now, Babbitt

Main

Street;

it

is

far better in structure

showed progress

painting and in dialogue.

general

character

in

Again he revealed deadly

dullness and the mediocrity of those

who

are satisfied

His

with material standards and surface prosperity.


setting

and

was graphic and

ridicule.

He

his satire

had a blending of wit

had created a character, however,

that soon

became ranked,

among

memorable creations by Dickens, Thackeray

the

and Balzac.

in

England and elsewhere,

Often Mr. Lewis has reiterated that he

never called Babbitt u a typical American"

that read-

ers applied that epithet to him, sometimes with anger


at

the characterization.

American" and, as
tourist

He

was "one type of an

such, he has

become familiar

as a

abroad and a "booster" at home.

Elizabeth A. Drew, writing of this novel and


successor,

its

Arrowsmith, comments upon "the boisterous

realism of Sinclair Lewis, showing up the

myth and

moonshine of the business world or the medical pro7

"Sinclair Lewis," by Henry Seidel Canby, The American-Scandinavian Review, February, 193 1.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

374

fession."

His third important novel was to

boyhood impressions of

more severe

a doctor's life but with even

invective against commercialism

upon a researcher

possible results
bitt

reflect his

in science.

and

its

In Bab-

he had shown occasional sympathy, both with his

realtor and

Mrs. Babbitt, but he

failed to maintain a

balanced attitude towards Martin Arrowsmith and the


social life

and the medical profession

in the

United

States, in the nineteen-twenties.

After return from abroad, the wanderlust of


author, which

had

earlier taken him, by motor, "into

twenty-six states/' gave

way before

home

city.

a settled

in a

this

smaller

a desire to live in

He

took a house

in

Hartford, near the country, and made varied acquaintances, especially

among workmen.

The urge

to write

another novel was incessant but he failed to find any


incentive until one day, on a hurried trip to

"he found his novel" and met the

New York

man who was

to be

the model, in certain ways, of his chief character, Dr.

Paul de Kruif.

This doctor had served

tary Corps of the American

Army

in the

where he had studied and applied


antitoxin to gas gangrene

later he

his

in the Sani-

World War,

knowledge of

had carried on more

researches at the Rockefeller Institute.

The
8

novelist believed that Dr. de Kruif

The Modern Novel: Some Aspects

Elizabeth A. Drew, 1926,

p. 39.

of

would be

his

Contemporary Fiction by

SINCLAIR LEWIS
best associate in writing the novel that

375

was now fram-

ing itself in his imagination; he had decided to have


his

hero

ment of

knowledge

find a use for his expert

a plague on a tropical island.

To

in treat-

get such a

background, Sinclair Lewis and his comrade went to

Thence they were to go to London to

the Barbadoes.

meet there Mrs. Lewis and the


years old. 9

work of

son, Wells, then seven

Dr. de Kruif has narrated the persistent

the author during the voyage, the animated

discussions about hygiene

and probings for material,

the process of visualizing the characters of fiction

"the fanciful but real figures of dark-haired Martin

Arrowsmith, the remote satanically sagacious Gottlieb,


the small inarticulate but strangely wise Leora."

10

On

one of the islands, they found a likely place for the


bubonic plague which was agitating the imagination of
the novelist; he wrote pages of impressions of the

whitewashed houses and funeral processions.


Slowly, and yet intensely, the author

worked over

his

material in London, at Fontainebleau, in a chateau,

and back again


night, stopping

was

insistent;

vision

in

London.

He

wrote by day and

seldom when the mood of composition


he was exhausted before the third

had been completed.

It

was

finished

re-

on the

steamer, returning to America in the winter of 1925.


9 Harrison, op.
10 Ibid., p. 25.

cit.,

p. 24.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

376

There are passages of

fine

Arrow-

characterization in

smith; there are pages of pungent satire upon modern

shams and attack upon the handicaps


idealist in scientific pursuits
fiction implies

above

science

such an ideal for his hero, devotion to

all

The

weak

the path of an

for this grim realist in

other desires.

In spite of such merits,

the novel lacks ease of diction.

cism and

in

with

It is tense

criti-

dramatic sequences.

in

novel has been rated more highly by foreign

American

by

than

judges

reviewers,

in

general.

Naturally, the latter readers resent the vigorous protests,


tific

implied

when not
for

discoveries

stated, against the use of scien-

industrial

The

uses.

author's

"crusading" quality, of which Dr. Canby speaks,

is

shown

in

in

such recurrent passages.

the final scene

There

is

tragedy

the seeming frustration of years of

research by Arrowsmith, because he has delayed an-

nouncing his

tests

too long and a French doctor in the

Pasteur Institute takes precedence


author's creative imagination

is

in

The

honor.

here exampled.

In the address by Dr. Erik Axel Karlfeldt, at the

awarding of the prize to one "who was a native of a


part of America which for a long time has had Swedish
contacts," are found
this novel:

some discriminating words about

"The book

ferent medical types.

mirable

learning

contains a rich gallery of dif.

which

is

The book
certified

is

by

full

of ad-

experts

as

SINCLAIR LEWIS
accurate.

...

work he has

In this

to the profession of his

which certainly
fakir."

is

own

377

built a

monument

father, that of a physician,

not set up by a charlatan or a

In the same address

about the novel, next

is

in

a sentence of vital interest

chronology, which has caused

widespread discussion and severe criticism: "His big


novel,

Elmer Gantry,

is

like a surgical

operation on one

of the most delicate parts of the social body."

This

is

a true, illuminating diagnosis of the story, which fol-

lowed two years later than Arrowsmith (1927). It


received a few favorable reviews but, in general, the
verdict

upon

as fiction,

it,

was that

polemic rather than a novel.

it

resembled a

It registered

extreme

prejudices and intense bitterness on the author's part

which overshadowed the unquestioned truth of some of


the exposures of hypocrisy in so-called religious leaders.

There are

excellent passages of

satiric characterization.

Canby again

"It

is

To

background and

quote Dr.

quite probable that

Henry Seidel
when the delibecome

cate susceptibilities of sectarianism have

less

Elmer Gantry will be more highly rated than


now, when it is read either with indignation or with
tender,

the satisfaction which comes


11

from seeing

grudge fed

Addresses by Erik Karlfeldt, Secretary of the Swedish Academy,


Sinclair Lewis, Winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature, on the
Occasion of the Award of the Nobel Prize, 1930, 1930, pp. 6-7. By permission of Alfred A. Knopf.

and

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

378
fat.

Nevertheless,

book

to

it

is

Elmer Gantry, with

the vitriolic tone of

overdrawn characters,

was George

is

its

Lewis returned to a

Sinclair

more convincing mood

Sam Dodsworth
in the

12

rank with Babbitt"

From
saner,

too violent and unrestrained a

in

Dodsworth.

supposed to be more refined than

At

Babbitt.

fifty,

having made a fortune

automobile business, he decides to retire and

hopes to enjoy the age-old culture of Europe, with

The

wife, Fran.

years younger,

latter, ten

and coquettish, light-brained and


seems sympathetic

Dodsworth

is

attractive

The author

selfish.

as the reader generally

in certain scenes

is

with

of torment because of the

nagging and unreasonableness of his wife.


boudoir

frequent

quarrels,

his

however,

Their

become

mo-

notonous and strained one discounts their education or


;

refinement from such dialogue.

The barbs

of

Mr.

Lewis's satiric wit are turned upon frivolous society


the

European

Cortright

is

cities,

Edith

as well as in this country.

the nearest approach to a

in

woman

with

brains and sympathetic understanding in this author's


novels.

The

closing pages suggest that she

may

be able

to bring something besides frustration into the life of

Dodsworth but the note of


the last words:

"He was

futility,

or irony, sounds in

indeed so confidently happy

that he completely forgot Fran and he did not again


12

The American-Scandinavian Review, February,

193 1.

SINCLAIR LEWIS

379

yearn over her for almost two days."

significant

passage precedes an entertaining classification of a

group of Americans traveling abroad: "Writers speak


confidently, usually insultingly, of an animal called 'the
typical

speak of a typical

There are
novel,

One might

American traveling abroad.*

and

human

in Festival

1S

being."

similarities, in plan

and characters

to retire for cultural leisure but

The

in this

by Struthers Burt (1931), an-

other portrayal of an American business

mercy of

as well

man who

whose hopes are

seeks

at the

a restless wife with political ambitions.

other stories by

Mr. Lewis, Mantrap (1926)

and The

minor

Man Who Knezv Coolidge


rank.
He has gained and

merited his recog-

nition

by foreign judges, as by American

1928) are of only

critics

discrimination, by four novels of social history,


Street,

many

Babbitt,

Main

Arrowsmith and Dodsworth.

other books of

modern

fiction,

Like

they are more

books of sociological analysis than novels,

essentially

in the restricted

meaning of the

criticisms of materialistic

latter

America,

word.
in

They

Be-

Nobel prize was given, or talked about, as an

honor to

Sinclair Lewis,

an historian of

Dr. Preston William Slosson,

uodsioorth
court,

are

which money-

getting and smugness are national characteristics.


fore the

of

Brace

&

by Sinclair Lewis, 1929,

Co.

in

this country,

The Great Crusade

p. 217.

By permission

of Har-

THE NOBEL

3 8o

and After

said of these best novels by

"Sinclair Lewis's

Main

from that of the


book written

ideals,

though

literary critic

His

emphatically not

the most important

in

real

enemy was commercialism and

town or country, and

his journalistic

photography was often excellent although


to portraiture."

from the

the United States in the post-war

in

whether

Mr. Lewis:

Street might be called

point of view

historian's

decade.

PRIZE WINNERS

it

never rose

14

The recurring emphasis upon the Nobel award


Mr. Lewis, by those who disapproved of the choice
this

to
in

country and England, was that Sinclair Lewis was

a satirist rather than a novelist.


criticism

among

Such was the general

by Gilbert K. Chesterton and


other commentators.

would hold true of other

J. B. Priestley,

The same

recipients of the

distinction

award before

Lewis

notably Anatole France and George Bernard

Shaw.

Primarily, they were satirists, using fiction and

drama

as their

more popular modes of expression.


The wit of Mr. Lewis is more acrid, his humor is far
more ironic, than the same traits in other writers of
satiric trend.

Temperamentally, he

is

and sometimes so prejudiced that he


camera

at a fair focus.

antagonism

is

marked

in

deeply in earnest
fails to place his

This quality of deep-seated

Elmer Gantry where he


,

failed

14 The Great Crusade and After: A History of America since IQ14


by Preston William Slosson, 1930, pp. 418-419. The Macmillan Co.

SINCLAIR LEWIS
to

381

any ministers who were not ridiculous or

find

His own prejudiced points of view have

despicable.

caused him to lose that "symmetry" for which

Mann
In

has striven.
the

speech

acceptance

of

American winner revealed


and

Thomas

at

Stockholm,

his earnestness of

his conviction as well as his prejudices.

outset

purpose

At

the

he declared his desire "to consider certain

and certain high and

exciting

present-day American literature."

Many

trends, certain dangers,

promises
extracts

this

in

were quoted,

in the press

of this country, from

the earlier portions of his address, in which he con-

demned many and

extolled a very few native writers,

including in the former class Howells and

Garland and
Anderson,

Some of

his

Dreiser, Cabell, O'Neill,

in the latter,

Willa

Cather

Hamlin

and

Ernest

comments upon individual

Hemingway.
critics

were

intended as humorous but they bore a sting of personal

resentment against the

critics

and the national Academy

of Arts and Letters and against American colleges, "as


thick in

America as the motor

traffic."

In this speech, however, there were less familiar

notes of aspiration and latent idealism which should not

be overlooked.

Acknowledging that he seems "to

swing constantly from optimism to pessimism and


back," he asserts that such a fluctuating course
fate of

anyone

who

is

"the

writes or speaks of anything in

"

382

THE NOBEL

America

PRIZE WINNERS

the most contradictory, the most depressing,

the most stirring, of any land in the world today.

The
for

it

Mr. Lewis should be read as


many penetrating truths about

speech by
contains

ence to creative artists, and the expectation,

whole

indiffer-

among

general readers in America, that a writer "should be a

decorator or a clown."

After the censure and stinging

the end has a note of challenge to younger

satire,

writers and to himself, written in fine prose and with

genuine sentiment: in this "salute," he urges these


authors

of

independent

courage

"to

America that has mountains and endless

mous

cities

and far

give

is

the

prairies, enor-

lost cabins, billions of

tons of faith, to an America that

to

money and

as strange

as

Russia and as complex as China, a literature worthy of

her vastness."
15

15

by Erik Axel Karlfeldt, Secretary of the Swedish


Winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature,
on the Occasion of the Award of the Nobel Prize, Stockholm, December, 1930, 1930. By permission of Harcourt, Brace and Co., 1931, p. 23.
Addresses

Academy, and

Sinclair Lewis,

CHAPTER XXIV
ERIK AXEL KARLFELDT
"Dalecarlia's Erik Axel Karlfeldt, singer, one of the poets
of our day

and

who

has soared highest on the wings of imagination

poetic form."

"No

consideration whatever shall be paid to the

nationality of the candidates!"

awards under the

will of

This provision for the

Alfred Nobel, has been

faith-

The Swedish Academy, during

fully maintained.

its

thirty years of service as a judge of the candidates

for the honor in literature, has chosen only eight Scan-

dinavian

winners

Bjornson,

Hamsun

and

Sigrid

Undset of Norway, Pontoppidan and Gjellerup of

Denmark, Selma Lagerlof, Heidenstam and Erik Axel


Karlfeldt of Sweden.
In

making the award

feldt,

this year,

Academy

the Swedish

given a posthumous honor.


April,

93 1.

By

lyric

first

time,

poet died

in

groups, the names of candidates

all

must be those of

living

Anders Osterling

This

for the

the rules that govern the giving of

these prizes, in

has,

1931, to Dr. Karl-

in

men and women,

not those

Svenska Dagbladet, Stockholm.


383

who

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

384

have passed away before they are nominated.

nouncement has been made


that the

name of Dr.

while he was

still

elected to this

honor

this year,

The

by the Academy,

Karlfeldt had been proposed

living.

He

was nominated and

in literature in

1920, but he re-

fused persistently to accept the prize during his

time because he was a

and

on the
1

member of

the Swedish

list

life-

Academy

His name remained

secretary in later years.

its

an-

of candidates and was proposed again in

931; his death gave his associates the opportunity

to

show

on the

their long-deferred desire to enroll his

list

of authors

who have

wide recognition and honor.

name

received this world-

His three children

will be

benefited by the financial award.

Such action, honorable as

and the memory of the

it

is

recipient,

to both the donors

has again raised the

question regarding the true purpose of Alfred Nobel,


in leaving his

ture

fortune for these prizes in science, litera-

and the advancement of peace.

Were

they not

intended by Alfred Nobel as a stimulus to greater

achievements

in their specific fields?

Was

not his

in-

tention to combine honorable recognition with a financial

assurance of an income, for a few years, so that

the recipient might have incentive and time for greater


discoveries or creations,

doing what we

call

free

from

"hack work"?

all

necessity for

Were

these prizes

ERIK AXEL KARLFELDT

385

to be awards, or appraisals, of prospective as well as

past

abilities,

work accom-

This same question has been raised

plished?

ous

rather than rewards for

chapters

when

winners

the

in previ-

literature

in

have

completed their contribution before they were thus


honored, with no chance to add to their work "for the
of mankind."

benefit

logical reasons for

There

The

some of

judges

may have

other

their decisions.

no question that Erik Axel Karlfeldt was

is

a poetic artist, that he richly merited the


in literature.

Nobel prize

For two decades he has been acknowl-

edged as "Sweden's foremost living poet."

He

has

shared poetic favor with Heidenstam and Frodigh.

Ever

the vital changes in political

since

Sweden

1865,

in

when

the

new

constitution

cepted, the peasantry have gained influence

There has been

age.

museums of

status

of

revival

past

was

culture;

erature has reflected this awakening interest in

tin

soil.

ac-

and cour-

rare treasures have been equipped.

and women of the

in

Lit-

men

Selma Lagerlof, Oscar Lever-

and Gustaf Frodigh became

its

interpreters

to

the world.

To

this literary

group Dr. Karlfeldt belonged and

him the movement seemed


2 The Germanic Review, Vol.
by Axel Johan Upvall.

to find

II,

No.

3,

its

in

culmination. Like

July,

1927, p. 244, article

THE NOBEL

386

his fellow poets

PRIZE WINNERS

he found his inspiration

ancient culture of

Sweden

as a

He was

tions

amid

province,

peasantry.

forests, high

its

he awakened as a poet, even

him were the history and

Here was

and

especially, in

of Dale-

proud that he was born of genera-

Dalecarlian

of

whole but,

men and women

the forms of Nature and the


carlia.

in the soil

In

that

northern

mountains and lakes,

in his

youth.

Dear

to

traditions of this region.

sheltered Gustaf Vasa, the Danish refugee;

here he found aid

in

winning his

first

victories

for

These people were ever courageous and

freedom.
loyal.

Dr. Karlfeldt was born at Folkarna, July 20, 1864.

He

received his education at local schools and at the

University of Upsala.
versity

life,

Before and after

he taught school.

librarian, serving first at the

man

life

In 1903 he became a

Academy

of Agriculture.

with definite goals, he never sought public notice.


chosen on educational commissions and, after

1904, was a

ers

uni-

of sensitive nature, living a quiet, courageous

He was
he

his

made

member

of the Swedish Academy.

Thus

contacts with distinguished visitors and writ-

from many countries who paid him

sincere tribute

for his personality and his poetry, but he

was known

to only a limited circle of readers outside of Scandi-

navia.

His translator and interpreter

Charles

Wharton

in

English,

Stork, emphasizes "the blend of the

Goodwin

ERIK AXEL KARLFELDT

ERIK AXEL KARLFELDT


poet

the

in

sonality."

His

man and

387

well-balanced artistic per-

his

first

volume of

lyrics,

Songs

Love and

of

when Karlfeldt was thirtyshowed much promise of artistic

Wilderness, was published

one years old.

It

growth and deep

sincerity

in

men and women.

Dalecarlian villages and their

says Charles

In

second and third volumes

this first collection, as in the

to follow in 1898

portrayal of the

its

and 1901, he proclaimed himself,

Wharton

a tribal spokesman.

Stork, "less an individual than

His own

special

moods and

idio-

syncrasies largely disappear in his representative functions.

He

seems to maintain, 'Of myself

but as a typical Dalecarlian

Like the ancient bard, he

And

yet curiously enough

the peasant
letters."

is

may

am

the voice of the people.

...

his style

is

not that of

man

finished

of

third volumes of his lyrics were

combined with the

The Songs of

Fridolin.

title

of Fridolin* s Poetry, or

The hero

of these lines

typical Dalecarlian peasant, loving the soil

kind,

nothing,

deserve a hearing.'

folk song but of the

The second and


later

humorous and

kindly.

Fridolin

is

and man-

was educated

at

the University, like his author, but he returned to the

farm,

in

middle

life,

and found

8 "Erik
Axel Karlfeldt,"
October, 193 1, p. 589.
4 Ibid.,
pp. 589-590-

The

his true joys

and

American-Scandinavian

wist-

Review,

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

388
ful

memories

boyhood home.

in his

are stanzas that explain

pared to Burns; they


finish

why

In these poems

Karlfeldt

indicate, also,

both melody and

of form that suggest, to some

The

blances to Tennyson.

often com-

is

critics,

resem-

simple themes of rural back-

ground are often linked with subtle and symbolic


meaning, as

"Time

in

Sweetest

is

of Waiting."

The

first

stanza:

the time of waiting,

Time

of floods, of buds dilating,

May

has naught so captivating

As a

clearing April noon.

Let not miry paths befool you,

Then the dampened woods will cool you,


And you'll hear the leaves' low croon.
Not in summer joys I'd wallow,
Give

me but

the blades that follow

Melting snows

And

in pine-dark hollow,

the earliest thrush's tune. 5

Unlike many poets of

this

generation,

Karlfeldt

wrote almost no prose and employed only a limited

number of verse forms.


sonnets.

He

did not write dramas nor

Lyrics were his chosen expression, written

largely in the Teutonic pentameter, sometimes with


u
extra unaccented syllables to give a natural and in5 Anthology
of Swedish Lyrics; from 1750 to IQ25, translated in the
original meters by Charles Wharton Stork, New York. The AmericanScandinavian Foundation, p. 228. By permission of translator and

publisher.

ERIK AXEL KARLFELDT


varied

His

lyrics.

entitled

He

formal tone."

has

small volumes of

six

left

last collection

389

appeared

The Horn of Autumn, and

in

1927,

poem was

his last

"Winter's Organ."

The

Dalecarlian people, compared by

Mr. Stork

to

the Scotch of the Southern Highlands, are rugged and

hunting and

loyal; they delight in


find equal zest in

They have eleand much humor.

music and dancing.

mental passions, strong sentiments


Karlfeldt has revealed these
their traditional romance, in

two found

but they

fishing,

in the

traits,

interwoven with

many poems,

notably

Anthology of Swedish Lyrics, from

I 75 i0 J 9 2 5> translated

by Charles Wharton Stork,

"Dreams and Life" and "A Vagrant." The


stanza of the latter poem is such a revelation

"How

hard,

glow that

And
But

On

your life?"

is

It

endless
is

is

last

storm and pain,

battle-drive;

quenched, a hope

made

vain,

clouds that with sunbeams strive,


still

the walls of

am

glad I'm alive. 7

many

Dalecarlian homes, and on

their furniture, are painted Biblical scenes, the

of native artists.
native costume

in

still

They are gay in


worn by many of

color,

the

as

work
is

the

women, and

6 "Eric Axel Karlfeldt," by Charles Wharton Stork, The AmericanScandidnavian Review, October, 1931, p. 587.
7
Anthology of Swedish Lyrics; from 1750 to IQ25, p. 237.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

390

they combine crude realism with exalted, religious feelKarlfeldt chose certain of the favorite themes

ing.

description

poetic

for

He

Rhyme. "

in

"Dalecarlian

Frescoes

mingled some of the grotesque

effects

costumes and manners, with the peasants'

in realistic

interpretations, often touched with poetic beauty

One

vision.

in

of the most pictorial

is

and

"The Assumption

of Elijah," beginning:

Behold the good Elijah setting out for Zion's land


In a bright

new

With Sunday

And

hat and leather coat, a stout whip in his hand,

a green umbrella by his knee!

Sage and lofty

To

cart so fine to see,

is

his bearing, for his soul has

heard the

call

leave this vale of earthly distress.

His Chief hath bidden, "Come up to

my

mountain judgment

hall

And

sit

there in the court of righteousness."

The World War depressed Karlfeldt,


many poets, and some of his later poems
spiritual

Bellona.

gloom, especially

His own serious

covery seemed

like

illness,

a miracle,

The

it

Flora och

from which

American-Scandinavian

Wharton

Review,

Stork.

his re-

and the "world con-

poems of

Emphasizing the dramatic gloom

translation by Charles

did so

reflected his

in the collection

flagration" gave a deep seriousness to the


later years.

as

October,

1931,

his

as well

p.

59 2

>

ERIK AXEL KARLFELDT


as the vigor of "Bellona"

mous panoramic mural


scapegoats

"the impression of an

purple-robed

and

otherwise

is

till

his inter-

theme

this

A madhouse

and

songmon" and then he proposes

the muse, "Let us go where

getting along

is

from

Virgo

the warring world of mankind I" he cries

out in "Poeten

summer

of

one of

preters stresses the revolt of the poet


and his return to simple, rural joys. U

morgue

enor-

painting, representing the poor

Bellona from Alexander to Wilson"

391

me
make me

we
.

first

met and

see

to

how

thou art the fresh ver-

my

nal wind, keep

in that fellowship

won

the independent gypsy of the high-

way,

who

has taken unto himself a bosom maid,

me, pray, a mourner and a

and die!"

heart once

jester

who

make

loves to live

This interpreter, Dr. Axel Upvall, finds the poetic


art of Karlfeldt

"broad and descriptive," with

preference for the idyl of every-day

genev he was able to "infuse


nature."

into

life

In his familiarity with

suggests resemblance to Thoreau.

Swedish poet, Bellman,

life.

special

Like Turinanimate

Mother Earth he
Like that other

his lines are full of music;

been said that both poets "wrote to a melody."

it

has

Some

of his verses are convivial songs, popular with Swedish

students,

like

the

rhythmic

lines

of the

"Dale-

9 "The Poetic Art of Eric Axel Karlfeldt" by Axel Johan Upvall,


The Germanic Review, Vol. II, No. 3, July, 1927.

THE NOBEL PRIZE WINNERS

392
carlian

March,"

from

ing

their

visualizing a troop of peasants return-

summer's labor:

March

Tuna Town,

to

O'er heath and

lads!

hillside

brown,

March to Mora, lying


Amid the mountains
While pick and spade we

We
To

and never

haste,

blue,

carry,

tarry,

where great woods are

And

little

lads,

sighing,

sweethearts, too. 10

In quite another tune, with melody and wistful craving, are the stanzas of
in the

ton

Vale of Longing

Stork,

in

October, 1931.

that stands

translated by Charles

Whar-

The American-Scandinavian Review,

By

contrast, with haunting music inis

"Mountain Storm,"

Stork, in

The American-Scan-

terwoven with tense emotion,


also translated by

Mr.

dinavian Review for June, 1931.


his

"Castle Unrest"

realism in portrayal,

his

Here

are revealed

imaginative vigor and

his artistic restraint.

Among
by

this

the few prose selections written and spoken

Swedish poet,

is

the address which he gave,

as Secretary of the Swedish

Academy,

in

December,

1930, awarding to Sinclair Lewis the Nobel prize in


literature for that year.
in

10

As

the

words are reread,

the light of later knowledge and honors to Dr.


Anthology of Swedish Lyrics; from 1750

to 1925, p. 241.

ERIK AXEL KARLFELDT


they have a personal message

Karlfeldt,

393

from

the

representative of this older race, in history and literature, to the

friendliness

younger nation,

message

in

which the

and humor of Dr. Karlfeldt were united

with his revolt from the materialism of our age and a


vision

of finer achievements in

Thus he

closed his address:

life

The new

and

literature.

great American

literature has started with national self-criticism.

It

Lewis has the blessed

gift

is

a sign of health.

Sinclair

of wielding his land-clearing implement, not only with


a firm hand, but with a smile

He

in his heart.
is

new

builder."

on

his lips

and youth

has the manners of a pioneer.

He

xl

Axel Karlfeldt, Secretary of the Swedish


Winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature,
on the Occasion of the Award of the Nobel Prize, Stockholm, December, 1930, p. 8. By permission of Harcourt, Brace & Co.
11

Addresses

Academy and

by

Erik

Sinclair Lewis,

CHRONOLOGICAL LIST OF NOBEL PRIZE


WINNERS IN LITERATURE
PAGE
1

901.

i902.

1903.

Sully-Prudhomme, Rene Francois Armand


mommsen, theodor
BjORNSON, BjORNSTJERNE

42
58

Mistral, Frederic, shared with


1904. Echegaray, Jose
1904.

i905. slenkiewicz,

1906. Carducci,

31

239
264

henryk

Giosue

Rudyard
Eucken, Rudolf
Lagerlof, Selma
Heyse, Paul
Maeterlinck, Maurice
Hauptmann, Gerhart
Tagore, Rabindranath
No Award.
Rolland, Romain
Heidenstam, Verner von

1907. Kipling,

1908.
1909.
1910.

191

1.

191 2.

1913.

19 14.
191 5.
1 91 6.

191 7.

Pontoppidan, Henrik, shared with


Gjellerup, Karl

191 8.

No Award

191

7.

1919. Spitteler,
1920.
1

92 1.

1922.

Carl

72
85

48
104

124
148
133

159
175

189
.

.197
201

205

Hamsun, Knut
France, Anatole

213

Benavente, Jacinto

247

William Butler
Reymont, Ladislaw

253
269

224

1923. Yeats,

1924.

21

395

396

THE NOBEL

PRIZE WINNERS
277
296

1927.

Shaw, George Bernard


Deledda, Grazia
Bergson, Henri

1928.

Undset, Sigrid

327

1929.

Mann, Thomas

346
364
383

1925.
1926.

1930. Lewis, Sinclair


1

93 1. Erik

Axel Karlfeldt

313

BIBLIOGRAPHY
The

compiler of

make an

exhaustive

the aim

is

this

list

to suggest

bibliography

attempted

not

has

to

of writings of the several prize winners

an adequate reading

to supplement the

list,

studies of individual authors and to stimulate further research.

As

this

book

is

American

intended, especially, for English and

readers, the foreign editions are not cited,

if

there

is

any ade-

quate translation available; in a few cases, the works must be


read in the original language.

The

bibliography

assistance of

has

librarians at

compiled

been

Widener Library

the

with

largely
of

the

Harvard

University, so that the books listed will be found in the card

catalogue there, and at the Library of Congress.


cases, the

In isolated

data have been furnished by individual writers and

translators.

The

authors are here listed in the order of the

awards, with dates appended

in

the

Index they are given

alphabetically.

Sully-Prudhomme (1901)
CEuvres: 5 Vols. (Paris, 1869-1901).
Selected poems in Anthology of French Poetry, edited by

H. Carrington (London and New York, 1900).


Selected poems in The Modern Book of French Verse,
by Albert Boni

(New

York, 1920).

Journal Intime (Paris, 1922).

Le testament

poetique, 4th ed.

(Paris,

ha vraie religion selon Pascal (Paris,


Que sais-jef Examen de conscience
397

1901).

1905).
(Paris,

1896).

edited

BIBLIOGRAPHY

398

On

Life and Letters by Anatole France ("Three Poets"),

A.

translated by

W.

Evans,

first series

(London and

New

York, 1922).

Punch and Judy and Other Essays by Maurice Baring (New


York, 1924).
Studies in Literature:

by

"Some French Writers

of Verse"

Edward Dowden (London, 1892).

Mommsen

(1902)
The History of Rome, translated with the author's sanction

and additions by Rev. William P. Dickson

(London,

New

York, 1869, 1908); (Everyman s Li1862, 1885;


brary, London and New York, 191 1, 1916); 5 Vols.
(Charles Scribner's Sons, New York, 1903).

Rome, from
Howland

Earliest

Time

(Philadelphia,

The Provinces

of the

tian, translated

40 B. C,

to

Arthur C.

1906).

Roman Empire, from Casar

to

Diode-

with the author's sanction and additions by

(New

Rev. William P. Dickson

York,

1887; London

New

York, 1909).
Historical Essays by E. A.

and

edited by

S.

(New York and London,

Freeman, second

series,

3rd ed.

1889).

Some Eighteenth Century Byways and Other

Essays by J.

Buchan (London, 1908).


Theodor Mommsen: His Life and Work by
Fowler (Edinburgh, 1909).

Wm. W.

Bjornson (1903)
Novels, in 13 Vols., edited by

New

Edmund Gosse (London and

York, 1895-1909).

Novels, in 3 Vols., translated by R. B. Anderson, American


edition (Boston, 1881).

Plays, 2 series, translated by

1913,

I9H).

Edwin Bjorkman (New York,

BIBLIOGRAPHY

399

Playsj 2 Vols., translated by R. Farquharson Sharp (Every-

man s Library, London and New York, 19 12).


Poems and Songs, translated from the Norwegian
by Arthur Hubbell Palmer

original meters,

in the

(New

York,

1915).

Arne, and The Fisher Maiden, translated by Walter Low,


with introduction (London and

Mary,

by

translated

New

Mary Morison

York, 1894).
(London and

New

York, 1910).

Mary, Queen

by

translated

Scots,

of

August Sahlberg

(Chicago, 1912).

When

the

New Wine

der (Poet Lore, Boston, 191

The Heritage

M.

Blooms, translated by Lee

of the Kurts,

Hollan-

).

translated

by Cecil Fairfax

(London, 1908).
The Wise Knut, translated by Bernard Stahl

(New

York,

1909).

Adventures

in Criticism

by A. T. Quiller-Couch,

rev. ed.

(New

York, 1924).
Bjornstjerne Bjornson by William Morton Payne (Chicago,
1910).
Creative

Spirits

of

Brandes, rev. ed.

Century

Nineteenth

the

(New York, 1924).


Edmund Gosse (London,

Northern Studies by

Mistral (1904;

Georg

by

1890).

shared with Echegaray)

CEuvres de Frederic Mistral, texte

et

traduction

(Paris,

1887-1912).

Le poeme du Rhone,
tion francaise

Mireille,

xii chants, texte,

(Paris,

provencal

et

traduc-

1897).

poeme provencal,

illustre

par Jean Droit (Paris,

1923).

Mireio: a Provencal Poem, translated by Harriet Waters


Preston (Boston, 1872; London, 1890).

BIBLIOGRAPHY

4 oo

Mireio, from the original Provengal, under the author's sanction, translated

of

Mr.

by C.

H. Grant:

"An

English Version

Frederic Mistral's Mireio" (Avignon, 1867).

Mireille; a Pastoral Epic of Provence, translated by

H.

Crichton (London, 1868).

Memoirs

rendered into English by Constance

of Mistral,

Elisabeth

Maud;

Strettell

(Mrs.

from the Provencal by Alma


Lawrence Harrison)
(New York,
lyrics

1907).
Selections

from Mireio, Calendau, and Nerto, translated by

Harriet Waters Preston, in Library of the World's Best

D. Warner, Vol. 17.


Frederic Mis'ral, Poet and Leader in Provence, by C. A.
Literature, edited by C.

Downer (New York, 1901).

Echegaray (1904;
El gran Galeoto,

shared with Mistral)


edited with introduction, notes, exercises

and vocabulary, by Wilfred A. Beardsley (Boston,


York, Modern Language

The Great

Series,

New

1930).

Galeoto, a play in three acts with a prologue by

Hannah Blood, with an introduction by Elizabeth R. Hunt (Garden City, 1914).


Mariana, translated by F. Sarda and C. D. S. Wupperman.
The Son of Don Juan, translated by James Graham (Boston,
Jose Echegaray; translated by

1895).

The

Street Singer, translated by

John Garrett Underhill

(Drama, Chicago, 191 7) included in


2$ Short Plays, edited by Frank Shay (New York, 1924).
Always Ridiculous, translated by T. W. Gilkyson (Poet
;

Lore, Boston, 191 6).

The World and His Wife (an American


Great Galeoto) by C. F. Neidlinger

adaptation of

(New

The

York, 1908).

Representative Continental Dramas, edited by Montrose J.


Moses (Boston, 1924).

BIBLIOGRAPHY
Masterpieces of

Modern

Spanish Drama, edited by Barrett

H. Clark (London and

Study

the

of

(London and

New

New

York, 1917)-

Modern Drama by

Barrett

H. Clark

New

The Modern Drama


and

401

York, 1925, 1928).


in Europe by Storm Jameson (London

York, 1920).

Main Currents

of Spanish Literature by J.

(New York,
The Drama of

1919).

D.

M.

Ford

Transition by Isaac Goldberg (Cincinnati,

1922).

Mummers

Masques and

by C. F. Neidlinger

(New

York,

1899).

Dramatic Opinions and Essays by G. Bernard Shaw (London


and New York, 1907).

The Modern Drama by Ludwig Lewisohn (New York,


1915).

SlENKIEWICZ (1905)
Authorized and unabridged translations from the Polish by
Jeremiah Curtin: With Fire and Sword; The Deluge,
Pan Michael; Quo Vadis; Without Dogma; In Desert and
Wilderness (Little,

Quo

Brown &

Vadis, translated by S.

Co., Boston, 1890-1912).

A. Binion and

S.

Malevsky

(Philadelphia, 1897).

Hania, short

tales,

translated by Jeremiah Curtin (Boston,

1897).

Let Us Follow Him, translated by Jeremiah Curtin

Boston,

i897).

On

the

Field

(Boston,

On

of

Glory,

translated

by Jeremiah Curtin

1906).

the Bright Shore, translated by Jeremiah Curtin (Boston,

1898).

On

the Bright Shore, translated by S. C. de Soissons

York, 1897).

(New

BIBLIOGRAPHY

402
Pan Michael,

translated by S. A. Binion

(New

York, 1898,

1905).

The Irony of Life (Children of the


N. M. Babad (New York, 1900).

Soil),

In Desert and Wilderness, translated by

Max

translated by

A. Drezmal

(Boston, 1912, 1923).

After Bread {For Daily Bread: Peasants in Exile) translated


by Vatslaf Z. Hlasko and Thomas H. Bullick (New

York, 1897).

The Third Woman,

translated by

N. M. Babad (New York,

1898).

Morris and Other

Lillian

Stories,

translated by Jeremiah

Curtin (Boston, 1895).

Modern

Polish

Literature,

Ch. II (Oxford University

lectures

by

Roman

Dyboski,

Press, 1924).

Carducci (1906)
Poems, with three introductions,
translated by G. L. Bickersteth (London, 1913).

Carducci: a Selection of
etc.,

Poems by Carducci,

his

translated with an introduction by

Maud

(New York, 1907).


Giosue
Carducci, with verse translations, notes
of
and introduction by Frank Sewall (New York, 1892).
Holland

Poems
Poems

from the odes of Giosue Carducci,


translated by M. W. Arms (New York, 1906).
Italy from the Poems of Joshua Carducci, translated by E. A.
Tribe (Florence, 191 2).

of Italy, selections

from the Poems of Giosue Carducci, translated


with biographical introduction by Emily A. Tribe (London
and New York, 1921).
Selections from Carducci, prose and poetry, with introductory notes and vocabulary by A. Marinoni (New York,
Selection

1913).

BIBLIOGRAPHY
The Rime Nuove

of Giosue Carducci, translated

from the

by Laura Fullerton Gilbert (Boston, 19 16).

Italian

Italian Influences

by Eugene Schuyler

Studies in

lialica;

403

Italian

(New

York, 1901).

Life and Letters

by William

Roscoe Thayer (Boston, 1908).


Giosue Carducci by Orlo Williams (London, 191 4).

"The Poetry

of

Carducci,"

{Edinburgh

Review, April,

1909).
Italy

Honors Carducci (Literary Digest,

Sept. 8, 1928).

Kipling (1907)
Kipling 's Collected Works, 32 Vols.,
tion (Charles Scribner's Sons;

Writings

in

Prose and

(Doubleday, Page

&

New

York,

29 Vols.,

Verse,

Co.,

Outward Bound Edi-

Garden

City,

897-1 928).
Pocket Edition
1

New

York, 1898-

1928).

The New World

Edition,

13 Vols.

(Doubleday, Page

Garden City; Toronto).


Rudyard Kipling's Verse; Inclusive Edition (Garden

&

Co.,

New

York, 1924).

The Years Between (New York,

19 19).

American Notes (Boston, 1899).


Independence, Rectorial Address
and

City,

New

at St.

Andrews (London

York, 1925).

(London and New York, 1920).


Land and Sea Tales for Boys and Girls (for Scouts and
Scoutmasters) (London and New York, 1923).
The Irish Guards in the Great War (London and New
Letters of Travel

York, 1923).
The Fringes of the Fleet (London and

New

The Second Jungle Book,

by John Lockwood

Kipling
Selected

Phelps

(New

Stories

(New

decorated

York, 19 14).

York, 1915).

from Kipling, edited by William Lyon


York, 1919, 1921).

BIBLIOGRAPHY

404
The Eyes of
Mine Own

Asia (Garden City;


People,

New

York, 1923).

Henry James (New

introduction by

York, 1899).
Essays in Little by

Andrew Lang (London and New York,

1899).
Heretics by Gilbert K. Chesterton (London and

New

York,

1919).

Rudyard Kipling: a Criticism by Richard Le Gallienne


(London and New York, 1900).
Shelburne Essays , series II, by Paul Elmer More (New
York, 1906).

Eucken

(1908).

Fundamental Concepts
and

critically

Modern

of

historically

Philosophic

considered,

Stuart Phelps, with introduction by

Thought,

translated

M.
(New

by

Noah Porter

York, 1880).

Can

We

son

Still

(New

Be Christians?

translated by

Lucy Judge Gib-

York, 1914).

'New Idealism, translated by Lucy


Judge Gibson and W. R. Boyce Gibson (London and

and

Christianity

the

New

York, 1909, 19x2).


Collected Essays of Rudolf Eucken, translated and edited by

Meyrick Booth (New York and London, 1914).


Intellectual Movements of the Present Day, translated by
Meyrick Booth (London, 1912).
Knowledge and Life, translated by Tudor Jones (London
and New York, 19x3).
The Truth of Religion, translated by Tudor Jones (New
York, 191

).

The Meaning and Value


Gibson and

W.

of Life, translated by

R. Boyce Gibson (London and

Lucy Judge

New

York,

1909, 1911).

The Problem

of

Human

Life,

as

Viewed by the Great

BIBLIOGRAPHY
Thinkers from Plato

W.

S.

to the

Hough and W. R.

405

Present Time, translated by

(New

B. Gibson

York, 1909,

1914).

and Life's Ideal, translated by Alban G. Widgery (London, 1912).


Naturalism or Idealism? (Nobel lecture) translated by Alban
G. Widgery (Cambridge, England, 191 2).
Life's Basis

Deems

Lectures, delivered in 191 3 at

translated by

Margaret von Seidewitz

English edition by
titled,

New York

W.

Present-Day

University,

(New

York, 1913),
Tudor Jones (London, 1913), en-

Ethics

in

their

Relation

to

the

Spiritual Life.

Main

Currents of

Modern Thought,

Booth (London, 19 12).


Socialism; an Analysis, translated

translated by

by

Joseph

Meyrick

McCabe

(London and New York, 1922).


Rudolf Eucken: His Life, Work and Travels by himself;
translated by Joseph McCabe (London and New York,
1921, 1922).

Rudolf Eucken: His Philosophy and Influence by Meyrick


Booth

(New

York, 1913).
Bergson; Their

Eucken and
Significance for
Thought by E. Hermann (Boston, 1912).

Selma Lagerlof (1909)


The Northland Edition
(Doubleday, Page
Christ

Legends,

(New

&

of

Selma Lagerlof 's Works,

Co.,

translated

Christian

1 1

Vols.

Garden City, New York).


by Velma Swanston Howard

York, 1908).

Gosta Berling's Saga, or The Story of Gosta Berling, translated by Pauline Bancroft Flach (London; New York,
1910,
Invisible

1918).
Links,

(Boston, 1899;

translated

New

by

York).

Pauline

Bancroft

Flach

BIBLIOGRAPHY

406

From a Swedish Homestead,


(London and

New

translated by Jessie Brochner

York, 1901).
Velma Swanston

Jerusalem, translated by
City,

New

Jerusalem,

York, 1915, 1918).


translated
by
Jessie

Howard (Garden

Brochner

(London,

1903).

Holy City: Jerusalem

Howard (Garden
Liliecrona's Home,

translated by

II,

City,

New

translated

Velma Swanston

York, 1918).
by Anna Barwell

(New

York, 1914).

Marbacka, translated by Velma Swanston Howard (Garden


City,

New

Miracles

of

York, 1924).
Antichrist,

translated

by

Flach (Boston, 1899, Garden City,

Pauline

New

Bancroft

York).

The Emperor of Portugallia, translated by Velma Swanston


Howard (Garden City, New York, 19 16).
The Girl from the Marshcroft, translated by Velma Swanston Howard (New York, 1916).
The Outcast, translated by W. W. Worster (Garden City,

New

York, 1922).

The Treasure,

translated by

Arthur G. Chater (Garden

New

York, 1925).
The Wonderful Adventures of Nils; Further Adventures of
Nils, translated by Velma Swanston Howard (Garden
City,

New

York, 1907, 191 1, 1920).


The Ring of the Lowenskolds, by Selma Lagerlof, including
The General Ring, translated by Francesca Martin;
City,

Charlotte Lowenskold,

Anna

Sv'drd, translated

by Velma

Swanston Howard (Garden City, 1931).


Selma Lagerlof: The Woman, Her Work, Her Message by

Harry E. Maule (Garden City, New York, 191 7).


Voices of Tomorrow by Edwin Bjorkman (New York,
1913).

BIBLIOGRAPHY
Paul Heyse

407

(1910)

Deutschen Novellenschatz, 24 Vols., edited by

Max

Lentz

(New

York, 1899).
L'Arrabiata, edited by
troduction

(New

Mary A.

Frost with notes and in-

York, 1896).

UArrabiata, translated by Vivian Elsie Lyon

(New

York,

1916).

UArrabiata, edited by

At

Frances

W. W.

Flower (Ann Arbor, 1922).

Hour and The Fair Abigail, translated by


A. Van Santford (New York, 1894).

the Ghost

Divided Heart and Other


S.

Copeland

Mary

Stories, translated

by Constance

(New

York, 1894).
of Magdala, translated by W. Winter

(New

York,

1904).
Barbarossa and Other Tales by L. C.

Mary

of

Magdala, an

historical

and romantic drama

adapted in England by Lionel Vale


Tales from the

German

(London, 1874).

S.

of Paul

(New

in 5 acts

York, 1902).

Heyse (D. Appleton

&

Co.,

New

York, 1879).
Study of Paul Heyse in German

Classics, edited

Spirits

Brandes

(New

the

of

Nineteenth

York, new

ed.,

essays,

plays,

York).
Century by

Georg

1925).

Maeterlinck (1911)
Works of Maurice Maeterlinck, 27
cloth and leather (Dodd, Mead &
York), includes

Kuno

New

Francke (German Publishing Co.,


Creative

by

two editions,
Co.; London and New
Vols., in

poems,

children's

books;

interpreted by several translators, including Alfred Sutro,

Alexander Teixeira de Mattos, Bernard Miall, Montrose


J.

Moses.

Plays of Maurice Maeterlinck, translated and edited with


introduction, by Richard

New

York, 191 1).

Hovey (Chicago,

1894, 2 vols.;

BIBLIOGRAPHY

4 o8

Joyzelle, translated by Charlotte Porter (Poet Lore, xv, in,

Boston )

Three Little Dramas for Marionettes, translated by Alfred


Sutro and William Archer (Chicago and London, 1899).
The Life of Space, translated by Bernard Miall (Dodd,

Mead,
Magic of
Mead,

The

New

York, 1928).

the Stars, The, translated by Alfred Sutro

New

(Dodd,

York, 1930).

Life of the White Ant, translated by Bernard Miall

(Dodd, Mead, New York, 1927).


Life and Writings of Maurice Maeterlinck by Jethro
(London, 1913).

Bithell

Maurice Maeterlinck : Poet and Philosopher by MacDonald


Clark

(New

York, 1916).

The Symbolist Movement

in Literature

by Arthur Symons

(London and New York, 1899; New York, 191 7).


Maurice Maeterlinck: A Study by Montrose J. Moses

(New

York, 191 1).


Dramatists of Today by E. E. Hale, Jr. (New York, 1905).
Iconoclasts by James Huneker (New York, 1905).
Varied Types by Gilbert K. ChestEssays

on

(New

Modern Dramatists

on

(New

York, 1905).

William Lyon Phelps

York, 1921).

Study of the Modern


York, 1925).

Dr

oy Barrett H. Clark

(New

The Modern Drama by Ludwig Lewisohn (New York,


1915).

Hauptmann

(1912)
The Dramatic Works of Gerhart Hauptmann, 9 Vols.,
edited by Ludwig Lewisohn, translations by Lewisohn

and others (Huebsch,

New

York, 1906- 1928).

Hannele, translated by William Archer (London, 1894).

BIBLIOGRAPHY

409

Hannele, translated by Charles Henry Meltzer

(New

York,

1908).

The Assumption

of Hannele,

translated

by G.

Bryan

S.

(Poet Lore, Boston, 1909).

The Sunken Bell, translated with introduction by Charles


Henry Meltzer (New York, 1899; Garden City, 1914).
The Sunken Bell; Elga; And Pippa Dances, all translated
by Mary Harned (Poet Lore, Boston, 1898, 1906, 1909).
The Weavers, translated by Mary Morison (included in
Chief Contemporary Dramatists edited by Thomas H.
Dickinson; Boston, 1915).

Oakley Williams

(New

York, 191 5).


The Coming of Peace, translated by Janet A. Church and
C. E. Wheeler (Chicago and London, 1900).

Parsival, translated by

The Fool in Christ: Emanuel Quint, a novel, translated by


Thomas Seltzer, Preface by Ernest Boyd (New York,
1911).

The Heretic of Soana, introduction by Harry


Modern Library, New York, 1928).

Salpeter

(The

Phantom, a novel translated by Bayard Quincy Morgan

(New

York, 1922).

Adele and Thomas Seltzer

Atlantis, a novel translated by

(Huebsch,

New

York, 1912).

The Island of the Great Mother, translated by Willa and Edwin Muir (Huebsch, The Viking Press, New York, 1925).
Gerhart Hauptmann: His Life and His Work by Karl Holl
(London, 191.3).
Studies

in

Modern German

(Boston and

Literature

by

Otto

Heller

New

York, 1905).
Glimpses of Modern German Culture by
(New York, 1898).

Kuno Francke

German Drama, with

Naturalism

in

the

reference

to

Gerhart Hauptmann, by Alfred Stoeckius

(New

Recent

York, 1903).

special

BIBLIOGRAPHY

4 io

Gerhart Hauptmann and John Galsworthy : a Parallel by

W.

R. Trumbauer

(University of Pennsylvania, Phila-

delphia, 191 7).

Nature Background in the Dramas of Hauptmann, by Mary


Agnes Quimby (University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia,
1918).

Study of the Modern


York, 1925).

Rabindranath Tagore

Drama

by Barrett H. Clark

(New

(191 3)

Writings of Rabindranath Tagore, 30 Vols. (The Macmillan Co.,

London and

New

York).

Gitanjali, translated by author, with introduction by

Yeats (London and

The

Crescent

Moon:

Bengali by author

W.

B.

New

York, 191 3, 191 6).


Child-Poems, translated from original

(New

York, 191 3, 19 16).


Japan; a Lecture (London and New York, 19 16).
Nationalism in the West and Japan (London and

New York,

1917).

My

Reminiscences by Sir Rabindranath Tagore

and

Red

New

York, 1917).

Oleanders, a

Drama

in

One

Act, by Rabindranath

Ta-

(New York

and London, 1925).


The Religion of Man, by Rabindranath Tagore
and London, 1930).
gore

(London

(New York

Rabindranath Tagore: a Biographical Study by Earnest Rhys

(New

York, 1915).
Rabindranath Tagore: the

Roy (New

Man

and His Poetry by B. K.

York, 1915)-

Glimpses of Bengal, selected from letters of Rabindranath


Tagore (London and New York, 1921).

Mahatma Gandhi: The Man Who Became One

with the

Universal Being (comparison of Tagore and Gandhi) by

Romain Rolland,
York, 1924).

translated by Catherine

D. Groth (New

BIBLIOGRAPHY
The Philosophy

Tagore by

Rabindranath

of

411
Sarvepalli

Radhakrishnan (London, 1918).

Romain Rolland

Many

(1915: no award in 19 14)


of the novels and studies by Rolland are published

by Henry Holt and Co.,


lean-Christophe,

(London and

Vols.,

New

New

York.
by

translated

Gilbert

Cannan

York, 19 10, 19 16).

The Fourteenth of July and Danton, authorized translation


by Barrett H. Clark (New York, 19 18).
Pierre and Luce, translated by Charles De Kay (New York,
1922).
Tolstoy , translated by Bernard Miall

(London and

New

York, 191 1 ).

The

People's Theatre, translated by Barrett

H. Clark (Lon-

don and New York, 1918, 1919).


The Wolves; a Play, translated by Barrett
(Drama, 191 7, No. 32).

The

H. Clark

Life of Michael Angelo, translated by Frederic Lees

(London and

New

York, 1912).

Colas Breugnon, translated by Katherine Miller

(New

York,

1919).
Clerambault : the Story of an Independent Spirit during the
War, translated by Katherine Miller (London and New

York, 1921).
Liluli,

with wood engravings by

Frans Masereel

(New

York, 1920).

Above

the Battle, translated by C.

K. Ogden

(Chicago,

1916).

Above

the Battlefield, with introduction by

G. L. Dickinson

(Cambridge, England, 19 14).


The Forerunner, a sequel to Above the Battle, translated by

Eden and Cedar Paul (New York, 1920).


Some Musicians of Former Days, translated by Mary
lock (London and New York, 1915).

Blaik-

BIBLIOGRAPHY

4 i2

Annette and Silvie (The Soul Enchanted: L'ame enchantee)


translated by Ben Ray Redman (New York, 1925).

Summer,

Van Wyck

by Eleanor Stimson and

translated

Brooks (New York, 1925).


Mahatma Gandhi: The Man Who Became One

with the

Universal Being, translated by Catherine D. Groth (Lon-

don and

New

York, 1924).
Goethe and Beethoven, by Romain Rolland, translated by

G. A.

and E.

Pfister

London, 1931).
Romain Rolland: the
translated

S.

Kemp

(Harper,

New York

and

Man

and His Work by Stefan Zweig,


by Eden and Cedar Paul (New York, 1921).

Romain Rolland

at Villa Olga,

by Lucien Price, Yale Re-

view, Winter, 1931.

Heidenstam (191 6)
Sweden's Laureate: Selected Poems, translated with introduction
Press,

by

New

Charles

Wharton Stork

University

Haven, 1919).

The Charles Men,

translated by Charles

with introduction by Fredrik Book

(Yale

King and His Campaigners,

(New

Wharton

Stork,

York, 1920).

translated by Axel Tegnier

(London, 1902).

The

Soothsayer, translated by Karoline

M. Knudsen

(Bos-

ton, 1919).

The

Birth

of

God, translated by Karoline

M. Knudsen

(Boston, 1920).

The Tree

(New

of the Folkungs, translated by

Arthur G. Chater

York, 1925).

Henrik Pontoppidan
Reisebilder aus

(191 7)

Ddnemark (1890).

The Apothecary's Daughter,


Nielson (London, 1890).

translated into English by C. L.

BIBLIOGRAPHY
Emanuel

or Children of the Soil,

413

From

the Danish, trans-

lated by Mrs. Edgar Lucas (London, 1896).


The Promised Land, From the Danish, translated by Mrs.

Edgar Lucas (with

illustrations by Nellie Ericsen)

(Lon-

don, 1896).

Hans Im Gluck, Ein Romane, ubersetzung von Mathilde

Mann:

I,

II (Leipzig, 1906).

Der alte Adam, zwie Roman, ubersetzung von Rich. Guttmanr (Miinchen, 1912).
Aus jungen Tagen, ubersetzung von Mathilde Mann (Leipzig,

1913).

Karl GjiLLERUP (1917)


Die Opferfeuer, Ein Legenden-Stiick (Leipzig,
Der Pilger Kamanita, Ein Legendenroman

903).
(Frankfurt,

1907).

The Pilgrim Kamanita,

legendary

romance,

translated

by John E. Logie (London, 191 1).

Das Weib

des Vollandeten, Ein

Legendenroman (Frankfurt,

1907).

Reif fur das Leben (Jena, 19 16).

Der goldens Zweig, Dichtung und Novellenkrauz

aus der

Zeit des Kaisers Tiberius (Leipzig, 1917).

Minna, a novel, translated by C. L. Neilson (London, 1913).


Die Gottesfreundin (Leipzig, 1918).

An

der Greuze,

Roman

(Leipzig, 191 9).

Romulus; ubersetzung von Margarete Bottger

(Leipzig,

1924).
Note: the bibliographical lists above on Pontoppidan and Gjellerup
have been prepared for the compiler through the courtesy of the
Royal Library (the Danish National Library) of Copenhagen.

Carl Spitteleu (1919: no award


Prometheus

u >d

E pi met he us

in 191 8)

(Jena,

88 1, 1924).

BIBLIOGRAPHY

4 i4

Balladen (Zurich, 1906).

Imago (Jena, 1906, 1919).


Olympian Spring (Olympischer Friihling)

1900,

(Jena,

1911, 1920).

Two

Little Misogynists, translated by

Le Roquette-Buisson, with

(New

Carter

Meine

Mme.

decorations

la

by

Vicomtesse

A.

Helene

York, 1922).

fruhestar Erlebmisse:

or

My

Earliest

Experiences

(Jena, 1914, 1920).

Study of Carl Spitteler

Kuno Francke
some

in

(Vol.

The German

XIV: New

Classics, edited

York,

1914).

by

With

translations.

Studies from

Ten

Literatures by Ernest

Boyd (New York,

1925).

Carl Spitteler: Monograph (in German) by Eugen Diederichs

Verlag

in Jena.

Contemporary Review, January, 1920.

Knut Hamsun
The

(1920)

Hamsun, in American edition,


by Alfred A. Knopf (New York).

writings of

largely

are issued

Hunger, translated by George Egerton (pseudonym) with


introduction by

Edwin Bjorkman (London,

1899,

New

York, 1920).

W. W.

(New York, 1921).


Victoria, translated by Arthur G. Chater (New York, 1923).
Children of the Age, translated by J. S. Scott (New York,

Pan, translated by

Worster

1924).

W. W.

Worster (New York, 1921).


(English title, Mothwise, London, 1921).
Shallow Soil, translated by Carl Christian Hyllested (London

Dreamers, translated by

and

New

Growth

York, 1914).

of the Soil, translated by

don and

New

York, 1921).

W. W.

Worster (Lon-

BIBLIOGRAPHY
Segelfoss

New

Town,

415

translated by J. S. Scott

(London, 1921,

York, 1925).

In the Grip of Life (play), translated by


tan Rawson (New York, 1924).

Graham and

The Women

Arthur C. Chater

(New

at the

Pump,

translated by

Tris-

York, 1928).

Vagabonds,

translated

by

Eugene

Gay-Tiff t

(Coward

McCann, New York, 1930).


August, translated by Eugene Gay-Tifrt

(New

York, 1931).

Knut Hamsun: a Study by Hanna Astrup Larsen (New


York, 1922).

Knut Hamsun; His

and His Outlook upon Life


by Josef Wiehr, Smith College Studies in Modern LanPersonality

guages (Northampton, 1922).

Knut Hamsun, Av Einar Skavlan (Oslo, 1929).


Knut Hamsun, the Bard Errant, by Elias Arnesen, The
Forum, June, 1925.

Anatole France (1921)


The writings of Anatole France are
Edition, issued by Dodd, Mead &
Another

edition, already complete,

appearing, in the
Co.,

New

Tours

York.

by the same publishers,

is

the Library Edition (31 Vols.).

Other volumes by same

At

publishers, include:

the Sign of the Reine Pedauque, illustrated by

Pape

Frank C.

(New York).

Honey Bee; a Fairy

Story for Children, translated by Mrs.

John Lane, illustrated by Florence Lundborg.


Joan of Arc, translated by Winifred Stephens 2 Vols.
On Life and Letters, Series I and II translated by A. W.
Evans, Series III translated by D. B. Stewart, Series IV
translated by Bernard Miall (London and New York,
;

1923-25).

BIBLIOGRAPHY

416

Anatole France; the

May

(London and

The Opinions

Man and His Work


New York, 1924).

by James Lewis

of Anatole France, recorded by Paul Gsell

(London and

New

York, 1924).

Anatole France Himself: a Boswellian Record by JeanJacques Brousson (Philadelphia, 1925).

French Novelists of Today by Winifred Stephens (London


and New York, 1908).

Huneker (New York, 1909).


Ten Literatures by Ernest Boyd (New York,

Egoists by James

Studies in

1925).

Those Europeans by

Huddlestone (London and

Sisley

New

York, 1924).

Benavente (1922)
Plays by Jacinto Benavente, translated with introduction by

John Garrett Underhill

four series, including his best

plays (Charles Scribner's Sons,

The Bonds

of Interest

Dramatists, Series

is

II,

New

reprinted in
edited by

York: 191 7, 1925).


Chief Contemporary

Thomas H. Dickinson

(Boston, 1921), and, also, in Representative Continental

Dramas, edited by Montrose J. Moses (Boston, 1924).


His Widow's Husband, translated by John Garrett Underhill, is reprinted in Fifty Contemporary One-Act Plays,
and Loving (Cincinnati, 1920).
Nobody Knows What He Wants, or The Dancer and the
edited by Shay

Doer (1925).
The Smile of Mona Lisa, translated by John Armstrong
Herman, Contemporary Dramatists Series (Boston, I9 T 5>
1919).
Jacinto Benavente by Walter Starkie

(Oxford University

Press, 1925).

Modern Drama
1920).

in

Europe by Storm Jameson

(New

York,

BIBLIOGRAPHY
The Drama

4i7

Goldberg (Cincinnati,

of Transition by Isaac

1922).

Main

Currents of Spanish Literature by

(New

J.

D.

W.

Ford

York, 1919).

Drama

Study of the Modern

(New

by Barrett H. Clark

York, 1925).

Drama

PlaySj Players, Playhouses; International

by Irma Kraft

(New

Today

of

York, 1928).

Yeats (1923)

The

writings of Yeats; plays, poems, essays and "contro-

versies" are issued in varied editions by the

Macmillan Co.,

London and New York.


John Sherman and Dhoya, by Gauconagh (pseudonym)
(London and New York, 1891).
Reveries over Childhood and Youth (New York, 1916).
Plays in Prose and Verse, written for the Irish Theatre, and

New

generally with the help of a friend (London, 1922;

York, 1924).

The Land

of Heart's Desire (London, 1894; Boston, 1894;

Chicago, 1894; Portland, Maine, 1913).


Responsibilities

and Other Poems (London and

New

York,

1916).
Selected

Poems (New York, 1921).

The

Autobiographies {Reveries over Childhood and Youth,

Trembling of the Veil) by


London, 1927).

King Oedipus;

Sophocles'

by

W.

B. Yeats

The Tower by

W.

(New

W.

B. Yeats

(New York

Version for the

Modern

and

Stage

York, 1928).

B. Yeats

(New

York, 1928).

William Butler Yeats; a Critical Study by Forrest Reid

(New

York, 191 5).


Twenty-five Years: Reminiscences

Hinkson

(New

York, 1914).

by

Katherine

Tynan

BIBLIOGRAPHY

418

William Butler Yeats and the Irish Literary Revival by


Horatio Sheaf e Kraus (London, 1905).
Studies in Prose and Verse by Arthur Symons

(London,

1904).

Wrenn

William Butler Yeats; a Literary Study by C.


(London, 1920).

Reymont

(1924)

The Peasants: Autumn; Winter; Spring; Summer, translated


by Michael H. Dziewicki (Knopf, New York, 19241925).

The Comedienne,

translated by

Edmund Obecuy (Putnam,

New

York, 1920).
Tales by Reymont in Oxford University World's Classics
1921).

The Promised Land

Extracts from

in

Modern

Slavonic

(London, 1921).
Course of Lectures at King's

Literature, edited by Paul Selver

Modern

Polish Literature;

College, London, by

Roman Dyboski Ch.

Ill (Cambridge,

England, 1924).

Shaw
The

(1925)
plays of

George Bernard Shaw are

by Brentano's,

New

York,

in

issued in America,

uniform edition

in

Eng-

Company, London.
The; or Constancy Unrewarded; being

land, by A. Constable and

Admirable Bashville,

the novel of Cashel Byron's Profession, done into a stage

play in three acts

Androcles and

(New

York, 1909).
Pygmalion

the Lion; Overruled;

(New

York,

(New

York,

1916).

Apple Cart, The;

Political

Extravaganza

I93i).

Back

tv

Methuselah;

York, 1922).

Metabiological Pentateuch

(New

BIBLIOGRAPHY

419

The; Getting Married; The Shewing

Doctor's Dilemma,

Up of Blanco Posnet (New York, 1916).


Heartbreak House; Great Catherine; Playlets of the

War

(London, 1919).
John Bull's Other Island, with Preface for Politicians

(New

York, 1913).

Major Barbara; with an Essay on

First

Aid

(New

to Critics

York, 1916; London, 1903).

Man

and Superman:

A Comedy

and a Philosophy (New

York, 1905).

Man

of Destiny,

(New

How He

The; and

Lied

to

Her Husband

York, 1916).

Misalliance:

The Dark Lady

of the Sonnets;

Play, with a treatise on parents

and

children

Fanny

First

(New

York,

1914).

Plays Pleasant and Unpleasant, 2 Vols.

New

York, 1916).

Philanderer,

(London,

(Includes Widowers' Houses,

Mrs. Warren's

Man, Candida, The Man

1898;

The

Arms and the


You Never Can

Profession,

of Destiny,

Tell)

Three Plays for Puritans

The

Devil's

(New
Ccesar

Disciple,

York, 191 5).

and

(Includes

Cleopatra,

Captain

Brassbound's Conversion.)

Pygmalion;
Saint Joan;
,

(New

A Romance
A Chronicle

in

Five Acts

Play

in Six Scenes

York, 1914).

and an Epilogue

York, 1924).

Translations and Tomfooleries


Intelligent

New

(New

Woman's Guide

(New

to

York, 1926).

Socialism

and Capitalism

York, 1929).

Appreciations and Depreciations: Irish Literary Studies by

Ernest Boyd (Dublin, 191 7;

Bernard Shaw; the

(New

Man

York, 1916).

New

York, 191 8).

and the Mask by Richard Burton

BIBLIOGRAPHY

4 2o

Mencken and Shaw by Benjamin de

Casseres

(New

York,

1930).

The Real Bernard Shaw by Maurice Colbourne (Toronto,


1930).

George Bernard Shaw by Gilbert K. Chesterton


York, 1 910).

Shaw by John

Stuart Collis

(New

(New

York, 1925).

George Bernard Shaw; His Life and Works: A Critical


Biography by Archibald Henderson (Cincinnati, 191 1).
Table-talk of G.B.S.: Conversations on Things in General

between Bernard Shaw and His Biographer by Archibald

Henderson

(New

Bernard Shaw:

York, 1925).
Critical Study by P. P.

Howe

(London,

1915).

Dramatic Opinions and Essays, edited by James Huneker

(New

York, 1906).

George Bernard Shaw: His Plays by H. L. Mencken

(New

York, 1905).
Bernard Shaw, An Unauthorized Biography Based on First-

hand Info&mation, with a Postscript and Letters by Mr.


Shaw, by Frank Harris (New York, 193 1 )
Ellen

and

Terry

Bernard

Shaw: An

Intimate

Corre-

spondence, edited by Christopher St. John with a Preface

by Bernard Shaw

(New

York, 1931).
Bernard Shaw: Prophet and Playboy by Archibald Henderson

(New

York, 1932).

Deledda (1926)
After the Divorce (romance), translated by Maria Horner

Lansdale (Henry Holt


Ashes

&

Co.,

New

York, 1905).

(romance), translated by H. H. Colvill

(London,

1912).

The Mother

(New

(novel), translated

York, 1923).

by

Mary G. Steegmann

BIBLIOGRAPHY
The

Woman

and the

Same

Priest.

421
The Mother (Lon-

as

don, 1922).

(Rome, 1892).

Fior di Sardagna (Flower of Sardinia)

Anime Oneste (Milan, 1895).


(Milan, 1904).

Cenere {Ashes)

Canne

(Reeds

al vente

Nostalgie (Milan,

Al

vecchio e

in the

Wind) (Milan,

1913).

14).

(The Old

faneiulli

Man

and the Children)

(Milan, 1920, 1927).


(romance, Milan, 1921

L'edera (Ivy)

La

fuga

Egitto

in

(Flight into Egypt)

also a play).

(romance, Milan,

1925).

Annalena

La

(romance; Milan, 1927).

Bilsini

casu del poeta

(The House

of the Poet), (novel; Milan,

1930.
//

paen del vento; romance (The Country [or Land] of the


Wind, Milan, 1931 )

Grazia Deledda, with complete bibliography,

in

Italian,

by

Mercede Mundula (Rome, 1929).


Studies in Foreign Literature byAlessandro de Bosdari

November

Illustrazione ,

22,

1925;

review

by

1928 )

Fernando

Palazzi.

La Sardegna

suoi scrittori; Conversation between Grazia

Deledda and Stanis Ruinas, 1927.


Saturday Review of Literature, December
by Ernest Boyd.

New York
New York

3,

1927; review

Times Review, December 18, 1927.


Herald-Tribune, December 4, 1927;

article

by

Alice Rohe.

Bergson (1926)

An

Introduction to Metaphysics, translated by T. E. Hulme.

Authorized edition, revised by the author, with additional


material

(New York

and London, 191 2).

BIBLIOGRAPHY

422
Creative

Evolution,

Mitchell

(New

authorized

York, 191

translation

Arthur

by

1; 19th printing, 1931 ).

Dreams, translated with an introduction by Edwin E.

(New York, 191 4).


Laughter; An Essay on the Meaning

Slos-

son

of the Comic, author-

ized translation by Cloudesley Brereton and Fred Roth-

well

(New York

Uenergie

and London, 1911

).

spirituelle; essais et conferences (Paris, 6th edition,

1920).

Matter and Memory, authorized translation by Nancy


Margaret Paul and E. Scott Palmer (New York, 191 1).
Mind-energy ; Lectures and Essays, translated by H. Wildon
Carr (New York, 1920). Includes "Life and Consciousness," "The Body and the Soul," "Dreams," "Intellectual
Effort," "Brain and Thought."
The Meaning of the War, Life and Matter in Conflict, with
an introduction by H. Wildon Carr (London, 191 5).
Time and Free Will; An Essay on the Immediate Data of
Consciousness, translated by F. L. Pogson (New York
and London, 1910).

Tomorrow: Critical Studies in the New Spirit of


Literature by Edwin Bjorkman (New York and London,

Voices of

1913).

Eucken

and Bergson:

Their

Significance

for

Christian

Thought by E. Hermann (Boston, 1912).


William James and Henri Bergson by Horace Meyer Kallen
(Chicago,

The

New

914).

Philosophy of Henri Bergson by Edouart Le Roy,

translated

from the French by Vincent Benson

(New

York, 1913).

Bergson and Religion by L. H. Miller

Winds

1913).

York, 1910).

George Santayana, Chapter II: "The


Henry Bergson (New York and London,

of Doctrine by

Philosophy of

(New

BIBLIOGRAPHY
Major Prophets

of

423

Today by Edwin E. Slosson (Boston,

1914).

Bergson by Joseph Solomon (London, 1912).

"An Hour with Dr. Henri Bergson" by Marcus M. Marks,


American Review of Reviews, November, 1924.

Undset (1928)
Jenny;

Novel, translated by

W. Emme (New

York,

1921).
Kristin Lavransdatter

(3 vols.)

The Bridal Wreath,

translated by C. Archer and J. S.

(New

York, 1923).
The Mistress of Husaby, translated by Charles Archer

Scott

(New

York, 1925).

(New

York,

(New

York,

by Arthur G. Chater

(New

York, 1929).
In the Wilderness, translated by Arthur G. Chater

(New

York, 1930).
The Son Avenger, translated by Arthur G. Chater

(New

The

Cross,

translated

by Charles Archer

1927).

The Master
The Axe,

of Hestviken (4 vols.)

translated by

Arthur G. Chater

1928).

The Snake

Pit, translated

York, 1930).

Olav Andrunsson
"Little Girl,"

The Living Age, 327: 537-541.

The Wild Orchid,


York,
Stories

Hestviken, 2 Vols. (Oslo, 1927).


translated by

by

Sigrid

Undset,

1929).

(New

931).

Undset,

Larsen, in Told in
Sigrid

Arthur G. Chater

by

translated

Norway, Vol.

by

Hanna Lastrop

XXIX.

Hanna Lastrop Larsen

(New

York,

BIBLIOGRAPHY

424

"Sigrid Undset" by Victor Vinde,

The Living Age, Novem-

ber 21, 1925.

"The Triumph of Sigrid Undset" by Carl


Commonweal, March 10, 1926.
"Sigrid Undset: Symbol of

Cranser,

The

Norwegian Literature" by Lucile

Gulliver, Boston Evening Transcript, January 12, 1928.


"Sigrid Undset" by Louis Kronenberger,

Review, January

Mann

6,

New York

Times

1929.

(1929)

The American

editions of

Thomas Mann's works

by Alfred A. Knopf,

lished

New

are pub-

York.

Buddenbrooks, translated by H. T. Lowe-Porter (2 Vols.,

New

York, 1924;

New

York, 2 Vols,

Children and Fools, translated by


fauer

(New

York, 1928).

in 1,

1929).

Herman George

Schef-

Includes "Disorder and Early

Sorrow," "Little Louise," "At the Prophets," and

Wardrobe."
Death in Venice and Other

Stories,

translated by

"The
H. T.

Lowe-Porter, with an introduction by Ludwig Lewisohn

(New

York,

1929).

Includes

"Death

in

Venice,"

"Tristran" and "Tonio Kruger."


Early

Sorrow,

(New

translated

by

Herman George

Scheffauer

York, 1930).

The Magic Mountain (Der Zauberberg), translated by


H. T. Lowe-Porter (2 Vols., New York, 1927).
A Man and His Dog, translated by Herman George Schef-

(New

York, 1930).
Mario and the Magician, translated by H. T. Lowe- Porter
fauer

(New

York, 1931 ).
Royal Highness ; A Novel of German Court Life, translated
by A. Cecil Curtis (New York, 1916, 1926).

Three Essays, translated by H. T. Lowe- Porter


1929).

(New

York,

Contains "Goethe and Tolstoi," "Frederic the

BIBLIOGRAPHY

425

Great and The Grand Coalition," "An Experience

in the

Occult."

Thomds Mann: Sketch

of

My

Life, translated by

Lowe-Porter (Paris, 1930).


Contemporary European Writers

(London and

New

Thomas Mann;
Eloesser

Sein

(Berlin,