De Bezige Bij

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De Bezige Bij
Bezige bij.gif
Parent companyWPG Uitgevers
Country of originNetherlands
Headquarters locationAmsterdam
Key peopleGeert Lubberhuizen [nl]
Robert Ammerlaan [nl]
Hans Nijenhuis [nl][1]
Publication typesBooks
Official website

De Bezige Bij ("the busy bee") is one of the most important literary publishing companies in the Netherlands.[2][3]


The company was founded illegally in 1943, during the German occupation of the Netherlands by Geert Lubberhuizen [nl]; its first publication was a poem by Jan Campert called De Achttien Dooden ("The eighteen dead"), which describes the execution of 15 resistance fighters and three communists. The poem was sold to raise money for Jewish children who were placed with Dutch families; when it was published, in the spring of 1943, Campert had already died in the Neuengamme concentration camp.[3] When the German occupier rounded up students for the Arbeitseinsatz, Lubberhuizen hid in the attic of Maarten Vink, a surgeon, and ran the press from there.[4]

The name is derived from one of Lubberhuizen's aliases, "Bas." After he had signed a note, "Bas (busy)," an English-speaking friend joked, "Bas, busy as a bee can be," which led to the current name.[4][5]

In 1997, De Bezige Bij became part of the Weekbladpersgroep, though it was to keep its editorial independence and its cooperative structure.[6]

Writers and poets[edit]

Writers and poets published by De Bezige Bij include:


  1. ^ "Hans Nijenhuis verruilt NRC voor De Bezige Bij". Brabants Dagblad (in Dutch). 2009-01-22. Retrieved 2009-07-21.
  2. ^ "Anne Franks Het achterhuis werd afgewezen". Trouw (in Dutch). 2004-12-22. Retrieved 2009-07-21.
  3. ^ a b Hubben, Hub. (2004-05-14). "Illegaal was beter dan clandestien". de Volkskrant (in Dutch). Retrieved 2009-07-21.
  4. ^ a b Roegholt, Richter. "Hoe De Bezige Bij ontstond als illegale uitgeverij". De Bezige Bij. Archived from the original on May 17, 2009. Retrieved 2009-07-21.
  5. ^ In 2004, the company published an illustrated history of its activities during the war years; see Hubben, Hub. (2004-05-14). "Illegaal was beter dan clandestien". de Volkskrant (in Dutch). Retrieved 2009-07-21.
  6. ^ "Bezige Bij krijgt onderdak bij Weekbladpers 'maar blijft nog jaren autonoom'". Trouw (in Dutch). 1997-06-28. Retrieved 2009-07-21.
  7. ^ "Schrijvers eren Remco Campert". (in Dutch). 2009-07-16. Retrieved 2009-07-21.
  8. ^ Dirks, Bart (2006-02-07). "Manuscript Het verdriet van België verkocht". de Volkskrant (in Dutch). Retrieved 2009-07-21.
  9. ^ Peters, Arjen (2005-04-19). "Brieven tonen aan: Jan Cremer was zijn tijd ver vooruit". de Volkskrant (in Dutch). Retrieved 2009-07-21.
  10. ^ Truijens, Aleid (2005-04-19). "Ik heb me de tiefus gezocht naar boerenkool". de Volkskrant (in Dutch). Retrieved 2009-07-21.
  11. ^ "Schrijver Louis Ferron overleden". (in Dutch). 2005-08-26. Retrieved 2009-07-21.
  12. ^ "Bezige Bij stelt Mulisch-consulente aan". Brabants Dagblad (in Dutch). 2008-10-16. Retrieved 2009-07-21.
  13. ^ Peters, Arjan (2005-10-14). "Jan Siebelink wint AKO Literatuurprijs". de Volkskrant (in Dutch). Retrieved 2009-07-21.
  14. ^ Fortuin, Arjen (2009-07-12). "Simon Vinkenoog overleden". NRC Handelsblad (in Dutch). Retrieved 2009-07-21.

Secondary literature[edit]

  • Hans Renders (2004). Gevaarlijk drukwerk - Een vrije uitgeverij in oorlogstijd. Amsterdam: De Bezige Bij. p. 255. ISBN 90-234-1430-6.

External links[edit]

Media related to Bezige Bij at Wikimedia Commons