Kanstantsin Mihaylavich Mitskievich|
November 3 [O.S. October 22] 1882
Akinchytsy, now part of Stoŭbtsy, Belarus
August 13, 1956|
Minsk, Byelorussian SSR, USSR
|Occupation||Poet and writer|
Yakub Kolas (also Jakub Kołas, Belarusian: Яку́б Ко́лас, November 3 [O.S. October 22] 1882 – August 13, 1956), real name Kanstancin Mickievič (Міцке́віч Канстанці́н Міха́йлавіч) was a Belarusian writer, People's Poet of the Byelorussian SSR (1926), and member (1928) and vice-president (from 1929) of the Belarusian Academy of Sciences.
In his works, Yakub Kolas was known for his sympathy towards the ordinary Belarusian peasantry. This was evident in his pen name 'Kolas', meaning 'ear of grain' in Belarusian. He wrote collections of poems Songs of Captivity (1908) and Songs of Grief (Belarusian: Песьні-жальбы, 1910), poems A New Land (Belarusian: Новая зямля, 1923) and Simon the Musician (Belarusian: Сымон-музыка, 1925), stories, and plays. His poem The Fisherman's Hut (Belarusian: Рыбакова хата, 1947) is about the fight after unification of Belarus with the Soviet state. His trilogy At a Crossroads (1954) is about the pre-Revolutionary life of the Belarusian peasantry and the democratic intelligentsia. He was awarded the Stalin Prize in 1946 and 1949. In honor of Yakub Kolas, a square and a street in the center of Minsk bear his name.
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