Shmuel Yosef Agnon, first Middle Easterner to receive Nobel Prize in Literature

First Middle East presented the Nobel Prize in Literature was in 1966

Winner from the Middle East was Shmuel Yosef Agnon, (born Shmuel Yosef Halevi Czaczkes). Sadly he had to share the glory with German-Swedish poet Nelly Sachs in 1966. Agnon was the leading figure in modern Hebrew fiction, he was the author of such novels as

  • Hakhnasat kalah (The Bridal Canopy), published in 1919
  • Tmol shilshom (The Day Before Yesterday), published in 1945

Shmuel Yosef Agnon primarily dealt with the conflict between the traditional Jewish life of the European (Jewish villages) and the moral confusions of the modern world.

Additional Information:

  • Shmuel Agnon: Biographical
    Shmuel Yosef Agnon (1888-1970) was born in Buczacz, Eastern Galicia. Raised in a mixed cultural atmosphere, in which Yiddish was the language of the home, and Hebrew the language of the Bible and the Talmud which he studied formally until the age of nine, Agnon also acquired a knowledge of German literature from his mother, and of the teachings of Maimonides and of the Hassidim from his father.
  • Shmuel Agnon: Facts
    Prize motivation: “for his profoundly characteristic narrative art with motifs from the life of the Jewish people”
  • Shmuel Agnon: Bibliography
    Translations into English
  • Shmuel Agnon: Banquet Speech
    Samuel Agnon’s speech at the Nobel Banquet at the City Hall in Stockholm, December 10, 1966
  • Shmuel Agnon: Prize Presentation – Video 2 min
    Watch a video clip of the 1966 Nobel Laureate in Literature, Shmuel Agnon, receiving his Nobel Prize medal and diploma during the Nobel Prize Award Ceremony at the Concert Hall in Stockholm, Sweden, on 10 December 1966.
  • Shmuel Yosef Agnon – Wikipedia
    Shmuel Yosef Agnon (Hebrew: שמואל יוסף עגנון‎‎) (July 17, 1888 – February 17, 1970)[1] was a Nobel Prize laureate writer and was one of the central figures of modern Hebrew fiction. In Hebrew, he is known by the acronym Shai Agnon (ש”י עגנון). In English, his works are published under the name S. Y. Agnon.
  • Shmuel Yosef “Shai” Agnon – Jewish Virtual Library
    Recipient of the 1966 Nobel Prize for Literature, Shmuel Yosef Agnon was born in Galicia in 1888. He immigrated to Jaffa in 1908, but spent 1913 through 1924 in Germany.
  • S.Y. Agnon | Israeli author |
    S.Y. Agnon, in full Shmuel Yosef Agnon, pseudonym of Shmuel Yosef Halevi Czaczkes (born July 17, 1888, Buczacz, Galicia, Austria-Hungary [now Buchach, Ukraine]—died Feb. 17, 1970,
  • Shmuel Yosef Agnon – New World Encyclopedia
    Shmuel Yosef Agnon (July 17, 1888 – February 17, 1970), born Shmuel Yosef Czaczkes, recipient of the 1966 Nobel Prize for Literature, was the first Hebrew writer awarded the prize, which he won jointly with poet Nelly Sachs.
  • Shmuel Yosef Agnon and the Hebrew Literary Tradition – Culture Trip
    Known to many as the definitive exponent of the Jewish literary tradition, Nobel Prize winner Shmuel Yosef Agnon’s oeuvre is permeated with his sense of religious and ethnic identity.
      December 10th 1966, 1919, 1945
      Shmuel Yosef Agnon
      Modern Hebrew Fiction Writter

Shmuel Yosef Agnon


      July 17, 1888, Buchach, Ukraine
      February 17, 1970, Jerusalem, Israel
      Shalom Mordechai Halevy (Father)
      (Mother Unknown)
      Emuna Yaron,
      Shalom Agnon

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