March 13 Writer Birthdays

1742 – Anne Hunter, Irish-born British poet, lyricist, and salonnière who is mostly remembered now for writing the texts to at least nine of Joseph Haydn’s 14 songs in English.

1753 – József Fabchich, Hungarian writer, translator, linguist, lexicographer, and priest known mainly for his translations of Ancient Greek poetry into the Hungarian language; he also compiled the first Hungarian etymological dictionary.

1776 – Ishadō Ueekata Seigen (also known by his Chinese-style name, Ō Kōretsu), poet and bureaucrat of the Ryukyu Kingdom, which was ruled by China at the time; renowned for his waka poetry, he was designated a member of the Okinawan Thirty-Six Immortals of Poetry.

1822 – Moritz Grave von Strachwitz, German poet whose work is characteristic of the transition through which German lyric poetry was passing in the 1840s, with the old Romantic strain still dominant (especially in his ballads, which are his finest work), but now accompanied by political themes; his death at the age of 25 was regarded as a huge loss to German literature, for he was considered the most promising of the poets of his generation, showing “a lyric genius of remarkable force and originality.”

1848 – Patrocinio de Biedma y la Moneda, Spanish poet, novelist, and journalist; in addition to her novels and poems, she founded the journal Cádiz and wrote for many publications of the time.

1872 – Oswald Garrison Villard, U.S. journalist, John Brown biographer, and founder of the Anti-Imperialism League; his mother was suffragist Fanny Garrison Villard, and his grandfather was abolitionist William Lloyd Garrison.

1873 – Maryla Wolska, Polish writer and poet of the Young Poland movement; her pen name was Iwo Plomienczyk.

1875 – Lizzy Ansingh, Dutch writer, poet, children’s author, and Post-Impressionist painter.

1883 – Kōtarō Takamura, Japanese writer, poet, and sculptor.

1884 – Oskar Loerke, German poet of the Expressionist and Magic Realist movements.

1884 – Emanuel Stickelberger, Swiss novelist, playwright, poet, and biographer.

1884 – Hugh Walpole, New Zealand-born English novelist, short-story writer, playwright, and lecturer, wildly popular in his lifetime but neglected recently.

1892 – Janet Flanner, U.S. journalist and writer; under the pen name “Genêt,” she was the Paris correspondent for The New Yorker for 50 years.

1895 – Juan Larrea, Spanish poet, essayist, and collector of Incan art.

1896 – Dorothy Aldis (born Dorothy Keeley), U.S. poet, journalist, novelist, and children’s book author.

1897 – Marcel Thiry, award-winning French-speaking Belgian poet, novelist, essayist, and short-story writer.

1900 – Giorgos Seferis, Nobel Prize-winning Greek poet and diplomat whose poetry is characterized by “eminent lyrical writing, inspired by a deep feeling for the Hellenic world of culture.”

1901 – Margaret Craven, U.S. novelist, short-story writer, and historian who often wrote on Native American themes; she is best known for her book I Heard the Owl Call My Name.

1907 – Mircea Eliade, Romanian writer, professor, philosopher, fiction writer, and historian of religion, best known for his Encyclopedia of Religion.

1910 – Julio Barrenechea, award-winning Chilean writer, politician, and diplomat.

1911 – L. Ron Hubbard (Lafayette Ronald Hubbard), U.S. founder of the Church of Scientology, author of pulp science-fiction and fantasy stories, and author of the debunked nonfiction book, Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health.

1911 – Marie Rudisill, U.S. author, biographer, and television personality whose book, Fruitcake: Memories of Truman Capote & Sook, led to her fame as The Fruitcake Lady on The Tonight Show; Capote was her nephew.

1912 – Félix Morisseau-Leroy, Haitian writer, poet, playwright, and journalist who raised status of Haitian Creole.

1914 – W.O. Mitchell, Canadian novelist and broadcaster, known for his 1947 book Who Has Seen the Wind.

1921 – Al Jaffee, U.S. cartoonist and comic strip writer for MAD magazine.

1925 – Inge Müller, German poet, writer, and children’s author; she married East German playwright Heiner Müller.

1928 – Ellen Raskin, Newbery Medal-winning U.S. writer, illustrator, and fashion designer who also designed the cover for the first edition of Madeline L’Engle’s classic novel A Wrinkle In Time.

1929 – Mateja Matevski, Albanian poet, linguist, essayist, journalist, translator, and literary and theatre critic.

1933 – Diane Dillon (born Diane Sorber), U.S. illustrator of children’s books; she worked closely with her husband, Leo Dillon.

1934 – Barry Hughart, World Fantasy Award-winning U.S. author of fantasy novels, most of whose works take place in “an Asia that never was.”

1935 – Kofi Awoonor, Ghanaian poet, novelist, professor, politician, and diplomat whose work combined the poetic traditions of his native Ewe people and contemporary and religious symbolism to depict Africa during decolonization; he also used the pseudonyms George Awoonor-Williams and Kofi Nyidevu Awoonor. He was among those killed in the September 2013 attack at Westgate shopping mall in Nairobi, Kenya.

1935 – Zulfikar Ghose, Pakistani writer, novelist, poet, editor, sports journalist, nonfiction author, and essayist; he is currently based in the United States.

1941 – Mahmoud Darwish, Palestinian poet and political activist.

1943 – André Téchiné, French screenwriter and filmmaker who is among the most accomplished post-New Wave French film directors.

1946 – Poojya Maate Mahadevi, Indian author, poet, mystic, spiritual leader, and scholar who was the first female Jagadguru, spiritual head of the Indian Lingayat community.

1948 – Krishna Bhusan Bal, Nepali poet who was celebrated for his ability to simplify poetry for its readers at a time when poets were inclined to grandiloquence.

1950 – Charles Krauthammer, Pulitzer Prize-winning U.S. journalist, columnist, and physician.

1951 – Marit Tusvik, Norwegian writer, poet, playwright, and children’s author.

1952 – Ágnes Rapai, award-winning Hungarian poet, novelist, writer, playwright, and translator.

1952 – Khalid Iqbal Yasir, Pakistani writer, journalist, poet, linguist, literary critic, songwriter, and lyricist.

1953 – Ridley Pearson, bestselling U.S. author of thrillers for adults and adventure books for children.

1960 – Yurii Andrukhovych, Ukrainian writer, poet, essayist, and translator.

1961 – Masahiko Shimada, Japanese writer, poet, novelist, and university teacher.

1962 – Seyhan Erözçelik, Turkish poet, publisher, essayist, and translator who brought a modern approach to classical Ottoman rhyme.

1963 – Ashraf Dali, award-winning Egyptian poet, journalist, novelist, travel writer, and children’s writer.

1970 – Lisa Lutz, award-winning U.S. novelist, screenwriter, and detective fiction author.

1978 – Gaute Heivoll, award-winning Norwegian poet, novelist, playwright, children’s author, and short-story writer.

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