George Szirtes

George Szirtes (pronEng|ˈsɪrtɛʃ), born May 9th 1948, is a Hungarian-born poet, writing in English, as well as a translator from the Hungarian language into English. He has lived in the United Kingdom for most of his life.


He was born Budapest, and came to England as a refugee in 1956. He was brought up in London and studied Fine Art in London and Leeds.

His poems began appearing in national magazines in 1973 and his first book, "The Slant Door", was published in 1979. It won the Faber Memorial Prize the following year.

He won the 2004 T. S. Eliot Prize, for his collection "Reel".

Szirtes lives in Wymondham, Norfolk, and teaches at the University of East Anglia.



*"Poetry Introduction 4" with Craig Raine, Alan Hollinghurst, Alistair Elliott, Anne Cluysenaar and Cal Clothier (Faber, 1978)
*The Slant Door (Secker & Warburg, 1979)
*November and May (Secker & Warburg, 1981)
*Short Wave (Secker & Warburg, 1984)
*The Photographer in Winter (Secker & Warburg, 1986)
*Metro (OUP, 1988)
*Bridge Passages (OUP, 1991)
*Blind Field (OUP September 1994)
*Selected Poems (OUP, 1996)
*The Red All Over Riddle Book (Faber, for children, 1997)
*Portrait of my Father in an English Landscape (OUP, 1998)
*The Budapest File (Bloodaxe, 2000)
*An English Apocalypse (Bloodaxe, 2001)
*A Modern Bestiary with artist Ana Maria Pacheco (Pratt Contemporary Art 2004)
*Reel, poems (Bloodaxe 2004)


*The Poetry Quartets 6, with Moniza Alvi, Michael Donaghy and Anne Stevenson (Bloodaxe / British Council 2001)
*George Szirtes (Poetry Archive, 2006)
*First We Take Manhattan with Leonard Cohen (1988)


*Imre Madách: The Tragedy of Man, verse play (Corvina / Puski 1989)
*Sándor Csoóri: Barbarian Prayer. Selected Poems. (part translator, Corvina 1989)
*István Vas: Through the Smoke. Selected Poems. (editor and part translator, Corvina, 1989)
*Dezsö Kosztolányi: Anna Édes. Novel. (Quartet, 1991)
*Ottó Orbán: The Blood of the Walsungs. Selected Poems. (editor and majority translator, Bloodaxe, 1993)
*Zsuzsa Rakovszky: New Life. Selected Poems. (editor and translator, OUP March, 1994)
*The Colonnade of Teeth: Twentieth Century Hungarian Poetry (anthology, co-editor and translator, Bloodaxe 1996)
*The Lost Rider: Hungarian Poetry 16-20th Century, an anthology, editor and chief translator (Corvina, 1998)
*Gyula Krúdy: The Adventures of Sindbad short stories (CEUP, 1999)
*László Krasznahorkai: The Melancholy of Resistance (Quartet, 1999)
*The Night of Akhenaton: Selected Poems of Ágnes Nemes Nagy (editor-translator, Bloodaxe 2003)
*Sándor Márai: Conversation in Bolzano (Knopf / Random House, 2004)
*László Krasznahorkai: War and War (New Directions, 2005)

As editor

*The Collected Poems of Freda Downie (editor, Bloodaxe 1995)
*New Writing 10, Anthology of new writing co-edited with Penelope Lively (Picador 2001)
*An Island of Sound: Hungarian fiction and poetry at the point of change (co-editor) Harvill 2004

External links

* [ George Szirtes]
* [ Contemporary Writers]
* [ Writers Artists]
* [ Article in "Hungarian Quarterly"]
* [ Article by Szirtes' on hidden Jewish roots in "Habitus: A Diaspora Journal"]
* [ Two Poems]

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