The Soul Of A Century/Josef Svatopluk Machar

The Soul Of A Century  (1943) 
Josef Svatopluk Machar
Josef Svatopluk Machar, from The Soul of a Century.jpg

JOSEF SVATOPLUK MACHAR

(1864–1942)

Joseph Svatopluk Machar, the outstanding Czech realist in poetry was born February 29th, 1864 in Kolin and according to recent advice from London died March 17th, 1942. In the year 1891 Machar left for Vienna where he remained until 1918 as a bank official, who kept lively contacts with the political and literary trends at home. Machar’s stay in Vienna broadened his political and social outlook, and enabled him to gauge all problems with a sounder perspective. Some of Machar’s original works bear marked traces of Vrchlicky’s lyricism, but soon the maturing poet surrenders the neurotic, sceptical eroticism of his early works and embarks upon reflective, philosophical and critical writings that dominate his more mature works. Machar’s poetry is marked by a deep sincerely of thought, a piercing penetration of the restless human soul and a definite deviation from the conventional form of the poetry of his predecessors and contemporaries. In his own evaluation Machar has placed himself as a direct follower of Celakovsky, Havlicek and Neruda, with whom he feels an intellectual and spiritual affinity.