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Salamon, Erno

SALAMON, ERNO

SALAMON, ERNO (1912–1943), Hungarian poet. Born in Gyergyószentmiklós, Transylvania (now Gheorghieni, Romania), Salamon joined the clandestine Communist Party at Cluj. As a journalist of the left, he was persecuted for his political activities, first by the Romanians and, after 1940, when northern Transylvania was annexed to Hungary, by the Hungarians. He was also imprisoned several times. In 1942, Salamon was mobilized into a forced labor unit of the Hungarian army and sent to the eastern front. During the Hungarian retreat, he caught spotted typhus and, delirious with fever, ran amok and was shot to death by Italian soldiers. Salamon is considered one of the outstanding modern Hungarian poets. Although his chief subject was the suffering of the exploited workers, Salamon also wrote daringly expressive love poems.

During his lifetime, he published two collections of verse, Gyönyörú sors ("A Wonderful Fate," 1937), and Szegények küszöbén ("On the Threshold of the Poor," 1938). Others appeared in an anthology published by a group of young Jewish intellectuals, with the support of the Cluj B'nai B'rith, entitled Kelet és Nyugat között. Zsidó fiatalok antológiája ("Between East and West – An Anthology of Young Jews," 1937). Salamon contributed verse to the left-wing press, wrote plays, and translated poems from the Romanian. After World War ii some of his works appeared in an anthology which also contained poems by two other Transylvanian-Jewish poets who died in the Holocaust, Sándor Korvin and Viktor Brassai; and volumes of Salamon's selected poems were published in Bucharest, "Dal utódoknak" (1961, 19672); Összegyüjtött versek (1966); and in Budapest, Mindmáig békétlenül (1966). On the occasion of the 25th anniversary of his death, a statue of Salamon was erected in his birthplace.

bibliography:

P. Pándi, Elsüllyedt irodalom, 2 (1963); Ararát évkönyv, 1 (1939), 119.

[Yehouda Marton]

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