Pandelis Prevelakis

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Pandelis Prevelakis (Greek: Παντελής Πρεβελάκης, sometimes transliterated Panteles Prevelakes or Panteles Prevelaces; 18 February 1909 – 15 March 1986) was a Greek novelist, poet, dramatist and essayist—one of the leading Greek prose writers of the "Generation of the '30s". Most of his works are set in Crete.

Biography[edit]

He was born in Rethymno, in Crete, on 18 February 1909. He studied philology in Paris and Thessalonice.

From about 1930 he was a friend and agent of the novelist and poet Nikos Kazantzakis, and eventually wrote a biography of him.

In 1938 he brought out what is probably his best-known work,The Tale of a Town or The Chronicle of a Town (Το χρονικό μιας Πολιτείας, 1937), a nostalgic depiction of Rethymno from 1898-1924.

From 1939 to 1975 he was a professor of art history in the Academy of Arts, Athens. In 1939 he brought out a historical story, The Death of the Medici.

After World War II appeared his Wretched Crete: a chronicle of the rising of 1866 (1945); which was followed by the trilogy, The Cretan (1948-1950) (revised edition 1965), which refers to events between 1866 and 1910 and introduces historical characters such as Venizelos. In 1959 he brought out The Sun of Death, in which a boy comes to terms with human mortality.

He also wrote four plays, all based on historical themes.

Prevelakes died in Athens in March 1986. His grave is in Rethymno, in a churchyard near the top of the hill on Kazantzakis Street. There is a statue of him in front of Rethymno's City Hall.

Translations[edit]

  • Le soleil de la mort (1997)
  • The Cretan, tr. A. Rick, P. Mackridge (1991)
  • The Tale of a Town, tr. K. Johnstone (1976)

References[edit]

  • Antonis Dekavalles (Αντώνης Δεκαβάλλες), Εισαγωγή στο λογοτεχνικό έργο του Παντελή Πρεβελάκη, Κέδρος, 1985. (Greek)