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100 Poems

Umberto Saba

Translated by Patrick Worsnip

Categories: 20th Century, Italian, Translation
Imprint: Carcanet Classics
Publisher: Carcanet Press
Available as:
Paperback (144 pages)
(Due May 2022)
9781800171930
£12.99 £11.69
  • Description
  • Author
  • Awards
  • Reviews
  • The most extensive selection to be published in the UK of the poetry of one of the greatest Italian writers of the 20th Century.
    Umberto Saba
    Umberto Saba was born Umberto Poli in 1883. He married Carolina Woelfler in 1909, and their only child, Lina (Linuccia) was born the following year. They lived in various places in northern Italy until Saba bought a bookshop in Trieste in 1919. The first edition of his great Canzoniere, 'a ... read more
    Patrick Worsnip
    After reading Classics and Modern Languages at Merton College, Oxford, Patrick Worsnip worked for more than forty years as a correspondent and editor for Reuters news agency, with postings in Italy, Russia, Poland, Iran, Lebanon, the us and the UK. Since retiring in 2012, he has devoted himself to translation from ... read more
    Awards won by Patrick Worsnip Winner, 2018 Poetry Book Society Recommended Translation
    (Poems)
    Praise for Umberto Saba 'Saba's poetry seems like the pure sound of a voice, a voice nearly freed from the bonds of words. The monody is pure feeling, in a musical state. The Language of Italian poetry which has almost always sought transfiguration in plasticity and relief, has rarely known an exception so singular. Saba attains the lied as if without realising it'
    Eugenio Montale
    'The moral physiognomy of Saba is very powerfully alive in his work, and makes him, now and forever, a great author. To this vast, complex, long-suffering personality, his poems bear witness, and from it draw their light....I have the impression that Saba, in our day, has been just discovered, and that the task of evaluating the full scope of his greatness will have to fall to others, when distance will have further clarified the perspectives. Saba will have to wait. Yet how many in Europe, can be as certain in their wait as he?'
    Quarantotti Gambini
    Praise for Patrick Worsnip '[an] excellent volume... it has clearly taken Worsnip a great deal of effort and carful work to write a volume of poetry so joyfully composed and so intellectually stimulating. Don't sit down with this book if you want to be bored.'

    Timothy Foot, The Postmaster and the Merton Record 


    'With the earlier poems Worsnip is happily slangy, and relishes the moments of naughty exuberance... Worsnip is good, indeed probably better than any other English translator so far, at the twinkling'
    Colin Burrow, London Review of Books
     'The translation is play as well as passion and, despite the scholarship of the introduction and the generous notes at the end, the book is characterised by spirit, desire and a briskness of touch that makes the reading of these "personal poems" a valuable pleasure.'
    George Szirtes, PBS Autumn Bulletin 2018
     'Propertius is perhaps the most enigmatic of the great poets from the golden age of Latin literature [...] Patrick Worsnip's vibrant contemporary translation will bring him to a new generation of discerning readers.'
    Peter Heslin, from the Introduction
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