Saba, Umberto

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Saba, Umberto


(real surname Poli). Born Mar. 9, 1883, in Trieste; died Aug. 25, 1957, in Gorizia. Italian poet.

In his first few collections of poems, for example, With My Eyes (1912), Saba developed the traditions of G. Pascoli by subtly evoking nature. Beginning in 1921, Saba’s poems were collected and published as The Songbook (II canzoniere). Subsequent collections were also published under this title.

The depth and power of Saba’s poetic vision are evident in his collections Words (1934) and Last Works (1944). Here the melancholy, contemplative quality of the poetry of hermetism, with which Saba was associated, is combined with the rich melody of rhythmic blank verse. Saba’s poetic expression is marked by clarity of thought and form, as well as by sympathy for human suffering. In the collections Mediterranean (1947) and Almost a Short Story (1951), Saba exposed the evils of war and Nazism and poeticized labor. He called for an end to human alienation. Saba’s works have been widely translated.


II canzoniere (1900–54), 6th ed. [Turin, 1965.]
Prose. [Milan, 1964.]
Parole, Ultime cose, Méditerranée, Uccelli, Quasi un racconto. [Milan, 1966.]
In Russian translation:
In Iz ital’ianskikh poetov. Moscow, 1958.
In Ital’ianskaia lirika: XX vek. Moscow, 1968.
“Stikhi.” In Inostrannaia literatura, 1974, no. 4.


Portinari, F. Umberto Saba. [Milan, 1963.]
Cecchi, O. L’ aspro reino. Milan, 1967.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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