Saturday 9 June 2007

RIP Michael Hamburger

Obituary from The Telegraph.

As a poet, Hamburger certainly had no cause to feel inadequate, though he was a surprising omission from many anthologies of mid-20th-century verse.

It was surprising because his work had nothing in it to offend the sensibilities of the custodians of received wisdom and, though markedly intellectual at points, had no obscurantism in its language. On the whole, his work was characterised by an unsentimental integrity and he was particularly evocative in his reflections on nature.

But if he had been neglected as a poet, it was his distinction as a critic, a teacher and, above all, as a translator, rather than any hostility toward his verse, which was the cause.

Hamburger translated fluently and widely from both French and German writers, though his greatest achievement was generally considered to be his translations of Hölderlin, which brought the poet to a wider audience.

Read the rest here.

Michael Hamburger in The Poetry Archive.

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