Tõnu Õnnepalu
Tõnu Õnnepalu also known by the pen name
Pen name
A pen name, nom de plume, or literary double, is a pseudonym adopted by an author. A pen name may be used to make the author's name more distinctive, to disguise his or her gender, to distance an author from some or all of his or her works, to protect the author from retribution for his or her...

s Emil Tode and Anton Nigov, is an Estonian
Estonians are a Finnic people closely related to the Finns and inhabiting, primarily, the country of Estonia. They speak a Finnic language known as Estonian...

A poet is a person who writes poetry. A poet's work can be literal, meaning that his work is derived from a specific event, or metaphorical, meaning that his work can take on many meanings and forms. Poets have existed since antiquity, in nearly all languages, and have produced works that vary...

 and author.

Õnnepalu was born in Tallinn
Tallinn is the capital and largest city of Estonia. It occupies an area of with a population of 414,940. It is situated on the northern coast of the country, on the banks of the Gulf of Finland, south of Helsinki, east of Stockholm and west of Saint Petersburg. Tallinn's Old Town is in the list...

 and studied biology
Biology is a natural science concerned with the study of life and living organisms, including their structure, function, growth, origin, evolution, distribution, and taxonomy. Biology is a vast subject containing many subdivisions, topics, and disciplines...

 at the University of Tartu
University of Tartu
The University of Tartu is a classical university in the city of Tartu, Estonia. University of Tartu is the national university of Estonia; it is the biggest and highest-ranked university in Estonia...

 from 1980 to 1985. He began his writing career as a poet in 1985 and has published three collections of his works. In 1993 he garnered international attention when his novel Piiririik (English translation: "Border State") was published under his pen name 'Emil Tode'. The book was translated into 14 languages and became the most translated Estonian book of the 1990s. That year, he received the annual literary award given by the Baltic Assembly
Baltic Assembly
The Baltic Assembly is an international organisation which aims to promote co-operation between the parliaments of the Republics of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. It attempts to find a common position in relation to many international issues, including economic, political and cultural issues...

. Õnnepalu's work often explores topics such as homosexuality, isolation and betrayal.

In 1992, his poem "Inquiétude du Fini" was performed as a choral piece, with notable Estonian composer Erkki-Sven Tüür
Erkki-Sven Tüür
Erkki-Sven Tüür is an Estonian composer.Tüür was born in Kärdla on the Estonian island of Hiiumaa. He studied flute and percussion at the Tallinn Music School from 1976 to 1980 and composition with Jaan Rääts at the Tallinn Academy of Music and privately with Lepo Sumera from 1980 to 1984...

 acting as conductor.

In addition to writing novels, Tõnu Õnnepalu has translated works into Estonian
Estonian language
Estonian is the official language of Estonia, spoken by about 1.1 million people in Estonia and tens of thousands in various émigré communities...

 from the French language
French language
French is a Romance language spoken as a first language in France, the Romandy region in Switzerland, Wallonia and Brussels in Belgium, Monaco, the regions of Quebec and Acadia in Canada, and by various communities elsewhere. Second-language speakers of French are distributed throughout many parts...

 by such authors as François Mauriac
François Mauriac
François Mauriac was a French author; member of the Académie française ; laureate of the Nobel Prize in Literature . He was awarded the Grand Cross of the Légion d'honneur .-Biography:...

, Charles Baudelaire
Charles Baudelaire
Charles Baudelaire was a French poet who produced notable work as an essayist, art critic, and pioneering translator of Edgar Allan Poe. His most famous work, Les Fleurs du mal expresses the changing nature of beauty in modern, industrializing Paris during the nineteenth century...

 and Marcel Proust
Marcel Proust
Valentin Louis Georges Eugène Marcel Proust was a French novelist, critic, and essayist best known for his monumental À la recherche du temps perdu...

 and has written for such English language publications as the Poetry Society
Poetry Society
The Poetry Society is a membership organisation, open to all, whose stated aim is "to promote the study, use and enjoyment of poetry".The Society was founded in London in February 1909 as the Poetry Recital Society, becoming the Poetry Society in 1912...

. Tõnu Õnnepalu is also a member of the Board of Governors of the Eesti Maaülikool (Estonian University of Life Sciences
Estonian University of Life Sciences
The Estonian University of Life Sciences , located in Tartu, Estonia, is the former Estonian Agricultural University, which was established in 1951 and renamed and restructured in November 2005....

) in Tartu
Tartu is the second largest city of Estonia. In contrast to Estonia's political and financial capital Tallinn, Tartu is often considered the intellectual and cultural hub, especially since it is home to Estonia's oldest and most renowned university. Situated 186 km southeast of Tallinn, the...



  • Piiririik ("Border State", as Emil Tode)
    • Published by Tuum, 1993.

  • Hind ("The Price", as Emil Tode)
    • Published by Tuum, 1995.

  • Mõõt ("The Measure", as Emil Tode)
    • Published by Tuum, 1996.

  • Printsess ("Princess", as Emil Tode)
    • Published by Täht, 1997.

  • Harjutused ("Practicing", as Anton Nigov)
    • Published by Eesti Keele Sihtasutus, 2002.

  • Raadio ("Radio", as Emil Tode)
    • Published by Eesti Keele Sihtasutus, 2002.

  • Paradiis ("Paradise", as Tõnu Õnnepalu)
    • Published by Varrak, 2009.

Collections of poetry

  • Jõeäärne maja, 1985
  • Ithaka, 1988
  • Sel maal, 1990
  • Mõõt, 1996
  • Enne heinaaega ja hiljem, 2005
  • Kevad ja suvi ja, 2009

External links

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