Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson

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Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson
Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson in 1909
Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson in 1909
BornBjørnstjerne Martinius Bjørnson
(1832-12-08)8 December 1832
Kvikne, Norway
Died26 April 1910(1910-04-26) (aged 77)
Paris, France
OccupationPoet, novelist, playwright, lyricist
Notable awardsNobel Prize in Literature
SpouseKaroline Reimers
ChildrenBjørn Bjørnson, Bergljot Ibsen, Erling Bjørnson
RelativesPeder Bjørnson (father), Elise Nordraak (mother)


Bjørnstjerne Martinius Bjørnson (born 8 December 1832 in Kvikne, Norway - died 26 April 1910 in Paris, France) was a Norwegian playwright, author and poet who won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1903.

His father was a Lutheran minister, but Bjørnson rejected organized religion. He married Karoline Reimers, a famous stage actress, and their son Bjørn also had great success as a stage actor, and appeared in a few early silent films. Their daughter, Bergljot, married Henrik Ibsen's son Sigurd.

He attended grammar school, Heltbergs Studentfabrikk in Oslo, with Henrik Ibsen, but dropped out of a course at the University of Oslo. By his early twenties he was writing literature reviews for the Norwegian newspaper, Morgenbladet. At 25 he wrote his first produced play, Mellem Slagene (Between the Battles). His Paul Lange og Tora Parsberg was a statement for political tolerance, and På Guds veie ("In God's Way") for religious tolerance. He is best known internationally for his tales of peasant life in Norway. His novel, Synnöve Solbakken, has been filmed three times. Bjørnson also worked as a stage director, and later served as editor of another paper, Aftenbladet, where he wrote fiery liberal editorials and passionately defended Alfred Dreyfus. His poem, "Yes, We Love This Land", is the Norwegian national anthem.

The cause of his death is unknown.

Books[change | change source]

  • Synnöve Solbakken (1857, novel)
  • En glad Gut (A Happy Boy) (1860, novel)
  • Sigurd Slembe (Sigurd the Bad) (1862, epic poem)
  • Fiskerjenten (The Fisher Maiden) (1868, novel)
  • Digte og sange (Poems and Songs) (1870, poems)
  • Arnljot Gelline (1870, epic poem)
  • Magnhild (1877, novel)
  • The Bridal March, and Other Stories (1882, short stories)
  • Captain Mansana, and Other Stories (1882, short stories)
  • The Fisher Maiden (1882, novel)
  • Railroad and Churchyard (1882, novel)
  • Det flager i byen og på havnen (The Heritage of the Kurts) (1884, novel)
  • På Guds veje (In God's Way) (1889, novel)
  • Geografi og Kærlighed (Geography and Love) (1889, novel)
  • Three Comedies (1925, collected plays, published posthumously)
  • Three Dramas (1925, collected plays, published posthumously)

Plays[change | change source]

  • Mellem Slagene (Between the Battles) (1857)
  • Halte-Hulda (Lame Hulda) (1858)
  • Kong Sverre (King Sverre) (1861)
  • De Nygifte (The Newly Married) (1865)
  • Arne: A Sketch of Norwegian Country Life (1866)
  • The Happy Boy: A Tale of Norwegian Peasant Life (1870)
  • En fallit (A Bankruptcy) (1874)
  • Redaktøren (The Editor) (1874)
  • Kongen (The King) (1877)
  • Kaptejn Mansana (Captain Mansana) (1878)
  • Det nye System (The New System) (1879)
  • Leonarda (1879)
  • The Wedding-March (1882)
  • En Handske (A Gauntlet) (1883)
  • Over Ævne (Beyond Powers) (1889)
  • Over Ævne II (Beyond Powers II) (1895)
  • Laboremus (1901)
  • På Storhove (At Storhove) (1902)
  • Daglannet (Dag's Farm) (1904)