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Mihai Eminescu is the Romanian national poet, with an overwhelming personality. As a poet he managed to synthesize national and international resources, with a rich imagination and a creative fantesy, through philosophical ascension and through a cosmic and mythological vision on man. Beside poetry, he experienced in the field of drama, but all his plays are just projects. He also wrote short stories, mostly in fantastic manner, which were shadowed by his poetry, and it is only nowadays that they regained their true recognition.

"Only the poet

Like birds that fly

Above the waves

Can go beyond the boundlessness of time."

Mihai Eminescu - Only the poet...

"Mihai Eminescu is one of the most splendid persons that humanity das ever produced. We strongly believe that if he had lived, healthily, another twenty years, he would have been considered, without anybody being able to deny it, one of the greatest creators of poetry in the entire world. [...] But Eminescu is more than just a genial poet. He is the first who had given a style to the Romanian soul, and the first one who made the fusion with the occidental culture."

Translated from Ibrăileanu, Garabet (1971). Preface to Mihai Eminescu - Poems. Bucuresti: S. Ciornei

"Eminescu's mind works with the idea of the origins of the world, of the infinite, of the creation, that is with the highest concepts created by the human reason. Among them, the idea of eternity is the most important one. There is, in his entire poetry, a considering of the things from a very high position, and from very far, from a view point that shames any narrowness of the mind, any limited egoism. His great intellectual superiority is the one that explains the so overwhelming prestige of his works."

Translated from Vianu, Tudor (1957). Critical Notebooks. Bucuresti: E.S.P.L.A.

"With Mihai Eminescu we have in the European literature the last great romantic poet, keeping in his existence and in his works the characteristic contour of the romantic artists' drama. Forever aspiring to a higher level of life, superior both ethically and esthetically, searching with pathos for the truth and consistently refusing to compromise, Eminescu was always in conflict with the world of his times because of his non-conformism, of his sincerity in the acts of his life, and of the height of his thinking, doubled by a thirst of absolute knowledge."

Translated from Dumitrescu-Busulenga, Zoe (1973). Humanistic Values and Equivalences. Bucuresti: Ed. Eminescu

All texts translated by © Gustav Demeter