Emile Verhaeren, (born May 21, 1855, Saint Amand lez-Puers, Belg.--died Nov. 27, 1916, Rouen, France), foremost among the Belgian poets who wrote in French. The vigour of his work and the breadth of his vision have been compared to those of Victor Hugo and Walt Whitman.Verhaeren was educated at Brussels and Ghent and during 1875-81 studied law at Leuven (Louvain), where he became acquainted with Max Waller, the founder of the influential periodical La Jeune Belgique (1881). Verhaeren became one of the group in Brussels who brought about the literary and artistic renaissance of the 1890s.His..
Jan van Nijlen, (born Nov. 10, 1884, Antwerp, Belg.--died Aug. 14, 1965, Forest), one of the most distinguished Flemish poets of his generation.Of a retiring nature, van Nijlen, a high official with the Ministry of Justice in Brussels, usually published his verse in limited editions. Among his early volumes were Het angezicht der aarde (1923; "The Face of the Earth"), De vogel phoenix (1928; "The Phoenix Bird"), and Geheimschrift (1934; "Secret Writing"). He gained a wider audience when in 1938 he at last published a one-volume selection from his poems, Gedichten, 1904-1938. Subsequent publications..
Georges Rodenbach, in full Georges-Raymond-Constantin Rodenbach, (born July 16, 1855, Tournai, Belg.--died Dec. 25, 1898, Paris, France), Belgian Symbolist poet and novelist whose writing was inspired by scenes of his native country.Rodenbach studied law at the University of Ghent, Belgium, and continued his studies in Paris. His first collection of verse, Le Foyer et les champs ("The Hearth and the Fields"), was published in 1877. He returned from Paris to Brussels to practice law, but he later renounced the profession to devote himself to the Belgian literary renaissance movement known..
Max Waller, pseudonym of Leopold-Nicolas-Maurice-Edouard Warlomont, (born Feb. 24, 1860, Brussels, Belg.--died March 6, 1889, Saint-Gilles, near Brussels), Belgian lyric poet who founded the review La Jeune Belgique (1881-97; "Young Belgium"), the leading literary journal of its day.Waller studied law at the Catholic University of Leuven (Louvain), where he worked on the student newspaper. With the founding of La Jeune Belgique, he began to publish the early work of most of the writers who later made a name for themselves in the Belgian literary renaissance (e.g., Maurice Maeterlinck,..
Andre van Hasselt, in full Andre Henri Constant van Hasselt, (born Jan. 5, 1806, Maastricht, Neth.--died Dec. 1, 1874, Brussels, Belg.), Romantic poet whose career influenced the "Young Belgium" writers' efforts to establish an identifiable French-Belgian literature in the late-19th century.Van Hasselt obtained Belgian nationality in 1833 and settled in Brussels, where he was employed at the Bourgogne Library before becoming an inspector of schools. He knew Victor Hugo, Alexandre Dumas pere, and other French Romantic writers but was also influenced by the German lyric poets. Although..
Jean Lemaire de Belges, (born c. 1473, Bavai, Hainaut [now in Belgium]--died c. 1525), Walloon poet, historian, and pamphleteer who, writing in French, was the last and one of the best of the school of poetic rhetoriqueurs ("rhetoricians") and the chief forerunner, both in style and in thought, of the Renaissance humanists in France and Flanders.Lemaire led a wandering life in the service of various princes and was often at the court of Margaret of Austria, the regent of the Netherlands; he was her librarian at Malines. An innovator of wide intellectual curiosity, he had a sense of literary beauty..
Max Elskamp, (born May 5, 1862, Antwerp, Belg.--died Dec. 10, 1931, Antwerp), one of the outstanding Belgian Symbolist poets, whose material was the everyday life and folklore of his native city. He was a sincere Roman Catholic, and his poems often reflect his religious sentiments.Of a well-to-do family, Elskamp also was something of a dilettante and illustrated his works with his own woodcuts. Like most Belgian poets of his generation, he was deeply influenced by literary developments in France; he had personal contacts with both Paul Verlaine and Stephane Mallarme. Nevertheless, his religious..
Clement Pansaers, (born May 1, 1885, Neerwinden, Belgium--died October 31, 1922, Brussels), Belgian poet and Dadaist whose reputation was resurrected some 50 years after his death.Pansaers began working as a wood engraver and sculptor, but he grew interested in the works of Sigmund Freud, Daoism, and Germanic culture, especially German Expressionism, which he introduced to Brussels. From 1917 to 1918, while living in occupied Wallonia, Pansaers edited the Modernist, internationalist, antimilitarist magazine Resurrection. There he expressed his conciliatory views on Walloon-Flemish..
Charles Van Lerberghe, (born October 21, 1861, Ghent, Belgium--died October 26, 1907, Brussels), Belgian poet, short-story writer, and playwright whose reputation rests largely on two collections of poems--Entrevisions (1898; "Glimpses") and La Chanson d'Eve (1904; "The Song of Eve")--that exemplify his lyrical talent and idealistic outlook.A fellow student of Maurice Maeterlinck and encouraged by the Belgian Symbolist Georges Rodenbach, Van Lerberghe in 1886 published his first poems in the Parisian magazine La Pleiade. His next published work, the macabre prose drama Les Flaireurs..