Seferis, George

Seferis, George sĕfĕrˈēs [key] (Giorgos Sefiriades), 1900–1971, Greek poet. Educated at the Univ. of Paris, he returned to Greece, where he had a distinguished career as a diplomat, including service as ambassador to the United Nations (1956–57) and Great Britain (1957–62). His poetry is surrealistic and highly symbolic—at times cryptic—invoking classical Greek themes. Many of his poems explore the 20th-century Greek consciousness and way of life. His volumes of poetry include Strophé (1931) and Mithistoríma (1935, tr. 1960). He also produced a volume of essays on Greek poets and poetry, Dokimés (1944; tr. On the Greek Style, 1960). Seferis won the 1963 Nobel Prize in literature, the first Greek to do so.

See his Collected Poems, 1924–55 (1967); Three Secret Poems (tr. 1969); A Poet's Journal (tr. 1974).

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