Czech genealogy and history exclusive right here for you!
The following is the first ever English translation of the article found in the 1892 edition of Amerikán Národní Kalendář. Brought to you exclusively by Onward To Our Past® and their translation partner for this piece, Ms. Nina Haviernikova of The Ohio State University.
Today’s installment, the second of two, completes this biography of famed Czech poet and author, Jan Nepomuk Neruda. If you missed installment #1 just click here and catch up!
Renowned Czech Poet
“In 1860 he edited a feuilleton of the magazine “Čas” (The Time), but when this periodical moved away from its free-thinking nature, Neruda left for the magazine “Hlas” (The Voice), which later became “Národní Listy” (The National Papers). He stayed with this journal until his last breath and, whenever he could, he entertained and cultivated his readers with his witty, stimulating, and humorous discussions “under the line”.
Week after week Neruda delivered his first-class pieces of exceptional prose full of wit, showing his broad outlook and deep knowledge, as well as ardent love for homeland and humankind, for freedom and ideals. Neruda kept his freshness for years, until the very last stage of his life, when he was burdened by a painful illness that ultimately prevented him from writing.
His first poems were published in Mikovec’s “Lumír” in 1854 under the pseudonym Janko Hovora. He published his first collection of poems, “Hřbitovní kvítí” (Cemetery Flowers), which provoked considerable emotion, four years later.
Later Neruda published his “Books of Verses”, “Ballads and Romances”, “Cosmic Songs”, “Simple Motifs”, and he left a beautiful collection of poems “Friday Songs” unpublished. In prose, he published a collection of short stories “Arabesques”, “Various People”, the brilliant “Tales of the Little Quarter”, “Playful and Fierce Jokes”, “Short and Shorter Studies”, as well as several volumes of his selected feuilletons. Neruda’s works of drama include the successful comedies “A Groom from Hunger”, “Sold Love”, the tragedy “Francesca di Rimini”, among others.
In addition, he was a very active and impartial literary and theatre critic. With this work he served our literature and theater in a great way. Neruda was a traveler as well; he travelled throughout most of Western and Southern Europe. He also visited the East, Palestine and Egypt. These travels resulted in the beautiful collections of short stories “From Minor Travels” and “Pictures from Abroad”.
All of his works are characteristic of his profound, purely Czech compassion. With original themes and relatively original form, Neruda wrote in a realistic style. This style allowed him to achieve great success as a writer, by fittingly linking patriotic and humanistic concerns.”