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George Topîrceanu

Photograph of Topîrceanu
Born March 21, 1886(1886-03-21)
Died May 7, 1937 (aged 51)
Pen name Gh. Dăianu, G. Struma
Occupation poet, journalist, short story writer, literary critic, novelist, translator, civil servant
Nationality Romanian
Writing period 1906–1937
Genres lyric poetry, parody, satire, memoir, travel literature, nature writing, sketch story, children's literature
Literary movement Sămănătorul

George Topîrceanu or Topârceanu (Romanian pronunciation: [ˈd​͡ʒe̯ord​͡ʒe topɨrˈt​͡ʃe̯anu], also known as Gh. Dăianu and G. Struma; March 21, 1886May 7, 1937) was a Romanian poet, short story writer, and humorist, also known as a journalist, critic, memoirist and civil servant. Most of his poetic works are ballads, which he depict a wide range of sentiments and moods: from satirical undertones in Balada chiriaşului grăbit ("Ballad of the Hasty Lodger") and Balada popii din Rudeni ("Ballad of the Priest from Rudeni"), to a tragicomic fable in Balada unui greier mic ("Ballad of a Small Cricket"), and to the meditative Balada morţii ("Ballad of Death") and Balada munţilor ("Ballad of the Mountains"). In many of these, as well as in the series Rapsodii de vară ("Summer Rhapsodies") and Rapsodii de toamnă ("Autumn Rhapsodies"), Topîrceanu combines poetic intent with nature writing.

Topîrceanu also authored an incomplete novel, depicting the descent of Venerable Sisoes from Heaven into the modern world, and titled Minunile Sfântului Sisoe ("Saint Sisoes' Miracles").



Born in the Bucharest area of Cotroceni, Topîrceanu was the son of Ion and Paraschiva, both of whom originated from the area around Sibiu, in Austro-Hungarian-ruled Transylvania. His father trained as a skinner but moved between jobs, while his mother worked as a carpet weaver.[1] George was the couple's second child, but had another three siblings from Paraschiva's earlier marriage.[2] One of his half-brothers, Ion Mateescu, became a sculptor.[3]

The future poet completed his primary education in Bucharest and in Şuici, Argeş County, where his parents had set up temporary residence.[4] In 1898, he moved back to Bucharest, enrolling at the Matei Basarab High School, where one of his teachers was Constantin Banu, later known as editor of Flacăra magazine; in 1901, he was admitted into the boarding school of the Saint Sava National College.[5] Before his June 1906 graduation, he had debuted as a satirist and poet, having his contributions published in various Bucharest magazines.[6] During his baccalaureate examination, Topîrceanu met and befriended his generation colleague Alice Călugăru, who was later a celebrated poetess in her adoptive France (in 1912, he dedicated her the poem Broaştele, "The Frogs").[7]

Also in 1906, George Topîrceanu enrolled at the University of Bucharest's Faculty of Law, without ever graduating.[8] Instead, he began work as a tutor for the Arhireul Calist primary school, and, for a few months in 1907, was drafted for peacetime service in the Romanian Land Forces, being subsequently employed as a copyist by the Romanian Orthodox Church administration.[9] Topîrceanu began collaborating on Viaţa Literară şi Artistică, a journal led by poet George Coşbuc, and enrolled in the University's Faculty of Letters, where he attended the lectures given by literary critic Mihail Dragomirescu.[10] He was also a collaborator of Revista Noastră, which Constanţa Hodoş published as a supplement of the traditionalist magazine Sămănătorul, and later recounted that this had been his only contact with the Bucharest literary milieu.[11] He published sporadically for Sămănătorul and Neamul Românesc, both of which were led by historian Nicolae Iorga, but soon parted with the group and became very reserved in his attitudes toward it.[12]

In 1909, inspired by his office career, Topîrceanu wrote his debut poem, Răspunsul micilor funcţionari ("The Reply of Minor Civil Servants"), which was also the first of his contributions to Viaţa Românească.[13] As he later indicated, the poem was a parody or a pastiche, mimicking the style of poets Dimitrie Anghel and Ştefan Octavian Iosif, who, at the time, were publishing a magazine under the common signature A. Mirea.[14] Also according to Topîrceanu's recollections, he had sent Răspunsul... to Anghel, hoping to have it published, and it was the recipient who decided in favor of forwarding it to Viaţa Românească.[15]

The following year, he was affiliated with Viaţa Socială, a magazine headed by socialist militant N. D. Cocea, and published the first in his series of humorous ballads, including Balada chiriaşului grăbit and Balada popii din Rudeni, as well as a cycle titled Nopţi ("Nights"), of which the poem Singuri ("Alone") was one.[16] The former, an instant success, was inspired by the poet being on permanent move between rooms and apartments; it is known that he lived on many streets, but only three of his addresses are known more or less precisely.[17] Also in 1910, he witnessed the passage of Halley's Comet, which served as a pretext for his piece Răspunsul cometei ("The Comet's Answer"), signed G. Dăianu in its original version.[18] He was by then regularly exchanging letters with critic and journalist Garabet Ibrăileanu, who, as publisher of Viaţa Românească, asked Topîrceanu to join him on the editorial staff in Iaşi.[19]

In autumn 1911, the poet decided to follow up on Ibrăileanu's request, leaving Bucharest and becoming the undersecretary and theater chronicler of Viaţa Românească, as well as co-founder, with Mihai Sevastos, of the magazine Teatrul.[20] According to one account, he had originally intended to stay in the city for just a few days.[21] Following that date, the poet considered himself adopted by the historical region of Moldavia, of which Iaşi is the main center.[22] He carried on with his habit of changing residence, and, by the time of his death, he had had no less that nine successive addresses in Iaşi.[23]

In February 1912, he married Victoria Iuga, who had been his mistress for a while, and who bore him a son, Gheorghe, on April 1 of that year.[24] He was in correspondence with Alice Călugăru, but later admitted to have destroyed his record of her address in Paris "because of some stupid disagreement, which I regret to this day."[25]

Upon the outbreak of the Second Balkan War in 1913, Topîrceanu was conscripted and sent on the Bulgarian front. His diary of the time mentions the hasty retreat of Romanian troops, and the panic provoked by a raging cholera epidemic.[26] Upon his return, he contributed literary pieces to Banu's Flacăra, among which was the anti-war poem Singur ("Alone").[27] In 1914 and 1915, he was attending literary soirées in the company of his friend, Mihail Sadoveanu, and again attempted to complete his studies by enrolling at the University of Iaşi Faculty of Philosophy.[28] He also met epigramist Cincinat Pavelescu, and recalled being impressed by his spontaneity and gallant dedications to his female acquaintences, in return for which, Topîrceanu reported, he received their kisses on his bald head.[29] Convoked to Putna County during a military drill of summer 1915, he completed the original version of his well-known poem Rapsodii de vară.[30]

In 1916, the year Romania entered World War I on the Entente Powers's side, he published his first volumes of collected poetry: Balade vesele ("Cheerful Ballads") and Parodii originale ("Original Parodies", second edition 1921; third edition 1927; fourth edition 1932).[31] He was at the time collaborating with Petre Locusteanu on the short-lived journal Ziarul Meu.[32]

Again drafted during the same year, Topîrceanu saw action in the Battle of Turtucaia, during which a heavy defeat was the Bulgarian Kingdom inflicted a heavy defeat upon the Bulgarians.

The poet returned home in early 1918.[33] At the time, Bucharest and southern Romania were occupied by the Central Powers, and its government, relocated in Iaşi, was suing for peace (see Romanian Campaign, Treaty of Bucharest). It was in Bucharest that Topîrceanu reunited with Constantin Stere, who had worked for Viaţa Românească and had since made the controversial choice to collaborate with the Central Powers, publishing the magazine Lumina. Topîrceanu himself contributed to Lumina, publishing both Balada morţii and memoirs of the preceding years (later collected as Amintiri din luptele de la Turtucaia, "Recollections from the Turtucaia Battles").[34]

In late 1918, as the war ended with the Entente's victory, he was back in Iaşi and, with Sadoveanu, edited the magazine Însemnări Literare, which aimed to reclaim the legacy of the then-suspended Viaţa Românească.[35] It was there that he published his Balada munţilor and Rapsodii de toamnă.[36] He occasionally using the pen name G. Struma, which was probably inspired by the Struma River, near which he had been held for part of his captivity.[37]

In 1920, the year when Viaţa Românească was again in print, he became one of the magazine's editors, and published a revised version of his earlier volume of ballads (Strofe alese. Balade vesele şi triste, "Selected Verses. Cheerful and Sad Ballads"; second edition 1928).[38] He also published another memoir, titled În gheara lor ("In Their Claws"), and, in 1921, a translation of William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream (as Visul unei nopţi de vară).[39]

He had by then separated with Victoria Iuga, and had affairs with two women writers, Otilia Cazimir, who had just debuted with Viaţa Românească, and Lucia Mantu, who was also a schoolteacher.[21] Topîrceanu eventually left Mantu for Otilia Cazimir, but reportedly never forgot her.[21]

Beginning in 1923, Topîrceanu diversified his activity as a journalist, editing the literary supplement of Sadoveanu's Lumea magazine, and, together with Cazimir, the satirical paper Lumea Umoristică.[40] An outstanding marksman, he accompanied Sadoveanu and poet Demostene Botez on hunting trips, but, according to Botez, was prone to meditative moods, and often spared his animal victims.[41] Botez noted: "this was not out of mercy, but because the aesthetic interest always surpassed the hunter's [interest]."[42] He was also an avid collector of hunting items, as well as of technical innovations, particularly those in the field of stereoscopy.[43]

In 1926, in recognition for his entire activity, George Topîrceanu was awarded the National Poetry Prize.[44] The following year, he held the first in a series of humorous conferences, with a text on 19th century physician Robert Koch and the effects of Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Bacilul lui Koch, "Koch's Bacillus").[45] In 1928, he began his collaboration with Tudor Arghezi's Bilete de Papagal, as well as with the Bucharest-based Adevărul Literar şi Artistic, while publishing the first edition of his Migdale Amare ("Bitter Almonds").[46] He was inspector of Moldavian theaters by Iuliu Maniu's National Peasants' Party cabinet (1930).[47]

In 1931, he printed Scrisori fără adresă ("Unaddressed Letters"), a volume of short prose.[48] The same year, Topîrceanu began collaborating with Sadoveanu on a set of textbooks for Romanian primary schools, introducing his Balada unui greier mic, a take on Jean de La Fontaine's The Cricket and the Ant.[49] He conferenced again in 1933 and 1935 respectively, this time on autobiographical subjects that underlined his artistic credo: Cum am devenit moldovean? ("How Did I Become a Moldavian?") and Cum am devenit ieşean? ("How Did I Become an Inhabitant of Iaşi?").[50] In between the two, he began publishing the first sections of his Minunile Sfântului Sisoe as a feuilleton of Revista Fundaţiilor Regale.[51] In 1936, he issued another volume of wartime memoirs, titled Pirin-Planina, began collaborating on the magazine Însemnări Ieşene, and was elected a corresponding member of the Romanian Academy.[52]

Topîrceanu had by then fallen terminally ill with liver cancer.[53] He died in Iaşi in early 1937.[54]

Literary contributions



Traditional criticism describes George Topîrceanu as a talented poet, but one lacking in lyricism. Thus, Garabet Ibrăileanu reproaches the poet not having had the willingness to render "those unclear echoes [...] that allow the reader to dream freely".[55] According to his friend and commentator Alexandru Philippide, for all their apparent spontaneity and their musicality, Topîrceanu's poems were the product of "bitter labors and thoughtful arrangement" (an account later backed by Otilia Cazimir).[56] In addition to writing ballads and a few epigrams, he employed more rigid forms of poetry, such as the sonnet and the quatrain.[57]

As an original and relatively isolated contributor to the literature of Romania, Topîrceanu adopted an undefined style. While, through their reliance on observation and first-hand experience, his works often adhere to literary realism,[58] critics such as Mihai Ralea tend to describe his work as a late manifestation of Neo-Classicism.[59] It was also noted that some of his descriptive poems show the influence of 19th century Classicist and Romantic authors, including Vasile Alecsandri and Duiliu Zamfirescu.[60] A noted influence on both his choice of subjects and the technical aspects of his poetry was George Coşbuc, and some of his early pieces closely resemble the latter author's contributions.[61] Topîrceanu recorded his admiration for Coşbuc, as well as their recounting their meetings, and described the older poet as "a poet who brought the balance and serenity of ancient Classicism into a living opus."[62]

Through his presence on the Viaţa Românească staff, Topîrceanu stood for the left-wing ruralist trend known as Poporanism. The contrast between this affiliation and Topîrceanu's more urbane approach was evidenced early on by the socialist critic N. D. Cocea, who stated: "[If Topîrceanu's chronicles] have none of the characteristics of literary Poporanism, they have instead loads of talent."[63]

At odds with various currents of the day, Topîrceanu carried out long and bitter polemics with some of their main exponents. In one article of 1912, he presented one of his own quatrains as a good example of new poetry, but, probably as a jibe at his contemporaries, did not indicate who its author was.[64] Among his staunchest adversaries were the modernists and Symbolists, in particular critic and Sburătorul editor Eugen Lovinescu, whom Topîrceanu repeatedly ridiculed in his articles and poetry.[65] Similar attacks were aimed at other modernist figures, including critic Ovid Densusianu and novelist Camil Petrescu (a polemic about national specificity in art, sparked between the poet and Petrescu, prolonged itself over several years, and witnessed personal attacks on both sides).[66]

Likewise, Topîrceanu was amused by the pastoral style recommended by Sămănătorul and other traditionalist circles, as well as by patriotic literature of Romantic nationalist tradition.[67] While he admired traditionalist poet and Sămănătorul contributor Octavian Goga, he was an adversary of Goga's collaborator Octavian Tăslăoanu, whose work he constantly derided.[68] He also targeted the militarist poet Mircea D. Rădulescu, to whom he once suggested writing only after having walked ten kilometers with a standard haversack on his back.[69] Sămănătorul was equally dismissive of the young poet, and its editors Alexandru Vlahuţă and Nicolae Iorga occasionally responded to Topîrceanu's comments with as much sarcasm.[70] Conservative critics such as Gheorghe Bogdan-Duică and Mihail Dragomirescu also rejected Topîrceanu's works, based on the claim that they were inconsistent, and Bogdan-Duică made the poet indignant after questioning the decision to grant him the 1926 Prize.[71]

Despite his stated rejection of the main literary schools, Topîrceanu was heavily influenced by the humorous writings of Dimitrie Anghel and Ştefan Octavian Iosif, who were each associated with both Symbolism and Sămănătorul.[72] He also treasured various pieces by the Symbolist poets Ion Minulescu, Mihail Codreanu and I. M. Raşcu, in those cases where it seemed to him that they had not shunned the more traditional guidelines.[73]

Main poems

A number of Topîrceanu's poetry pieces take their inspiration from folklore, which he deemed "the grand and only reservoir of creative forces".[74] The three-verse poem Cântec ("Song"), was based on a Bulgarian song the poet had heard during his wartime captivity, and is probably an unwitting translation from poet Lyuben Karavelov.[75] Considered by Ibrăileanu "one of the best" among his writings,[76] Balada morţii borrows from traditional Romanian songs, and, with its subdued vision of a solitary death on the Topolog Valley, is one of the few purely lyrical poems ever written by Topîrceanu.[77] Its published variant begins with the lyrics:

Cobora pe Topolog
Dintre munţi, la vale...
Şi la umbra unui stog
A căzut din cale

În ce vară? În ce an?
Anii trec ca apa...
Era un drumeţ sărman
Muncitor cu sapa[78]

He was following the Topolog
From the mountains, downhill...
And in the shadow of a stack
He fell off his path

In which summer? In which year?
Years pass like water...
He was a poor traveler
Working with his spade

This interest in depicting the life of simple folk is also present in Balada popii din Rudeni. There, Topîrceanu alternates nature writing, showing a wintertime stillness that Călinescu has likens to dioramas,[79] with the register of satire, portraying a provincial priest with a drinking problem. This contrast was celebrated by the modernist poet Ion Barbu, who argued that, in contrast with the "brutalities and hokum" of traditionalist poets, Topîrceanu had managed to render "the real source of [local] spirituality: humor and the love for humble things."[80] Balada popii... and Balada morţii are similar in style with Noapte de iarnă, where a male character, confronted with the harshness of winter, contemplates his own solitude.[81]

During one of his conferences, the author indicated that Balada chiriaşului grăbit, his most popular work, was the direct result of his experience.[82] Its final lines, which the poet confessed to have used in a dialog with his landlady before realizing they were lyrics,[83] read:

Rămâi sănătoasă, cucoană,
Că-mi iau geamantanul şi plec![84]

Stay healthy, my lady,
For I'm taking my suitcase and leaving!

His poems with everyday subjects include Noapte de mai, which depicts the reverie and anger of a cobbler compelled to work night and day sitting on a "barbaric trivet", and imagining what his life would be like if he were a socialite.[85]

The parodist

Long before his Parodii originale, Topîrceanu often used motifs inspired by other writers. They include Jean de La Fontaine for Balada unui greier mic, as well as Antoine François Prévost and his Manon Lescaut for the 1912 Manon şi Des Grieux ("Manon and Des Grieux").[86] Another piece, the 1920 Infernul ("Inferno"), is a parody of Dante Aligheri's Renaissance opus Divine Comedy, where Topîrceanu casts himself in Dante's role as a visitor of Hell, and turns Dante (portrayed as un om cu nasul dezolat şi mare, "a man with a desolate and large nose") into an equivalent of his Virgil.[87] The poem mixes parody with Dantesque satire aimed at two of Topîrceanu's contemporaries, critics Eugen Lovinescu and Gheorghe Bogdan-Duică, both of whom the poet depicts as eternally damned.[88]

With Parodii..., Topîrceanu mixed literary exercise and ironic comments. Many of them also feature anti-modernist and anti-Symbolist comments: his version of Alfred de Musset's Nights, which has for its theme the contrast between Romantic imagery and cruel reality, alludes to the aestheticism cultivated by Symbolists such al Al. T. Stamatiad.[89] He dedicates a series of parodies to Symbolists who cultivate exoticism and urban themes: Ion Minulescu (with romanzas about cars and gramophones, as well as the "rain over the city" leitmotif present in his work and that of his colleagues), Adrian Maniu (with a poem about the circus, arbitrarily arranged in accordance with Maniu's own style) and N. Davidescu (notably, with a retake of Davidescu's Prodigal Son theme).[90]

Other writings in the volume are dedicated to criticism of traditionalist poetry, nationalism and ruralism. One of them has for its subject Romania's national hero Michael the Brave, as depicted in the Romantic nationalist works of Dimitrie Bolintineanu. The poem attacks not just Bolintineanu's style, but also the poems of Mircea D. Rădulescu and patriotic didacticism in general.[91] Similarly, in a poem which mimicked the style of Theodor Speranţia, he satirizes the latter's inclination toward antisemitism,[92] and in a piece imitating I. U. Soricu's ruralist idylls, persiflages the traditionalists' abuses of rhetoric.[93] Rădulescu's descriptive style, which he once likened to that of "an anthropomorphous monkey", forms the theme of a separate parody, titled Nocturnă ("Nocturne").[94]

In one of his best known parodies, the 1921 Vara la ţară ("Summer in the Country"), George Topîrceanu closely imitates and subtly mocks the pastoral poetry of 19th century author Alexandru Depărăţeanu.[95] Adopting what Călinescu describes as "the path of the grotesque and joviality",[96] the poet makes a point of denouncing villages as uncomfortable, tiresome and primitive places.[97] Part of it shows peasants objecting to the compulsory spraying of agricultural lime:

Când se ia câte-o măsură
Pe agentul sanitar
Şi-l întreabă, fără noimă:
Ce-ai cu noi, mă?
Pentru ce să dăm cu var?...[98]

Whenever measures are enforced
People curse
The sanitary agent
And ask him, willy-nilly:
Say, what have you got against us?
Why should we be spraying lime?...

The parody of Homer's Odyssey, which rests on George Murnu's Romanian-language translation,

Towards the end, it veers into a jab at Minister of Culture Alexandru Lepedatu's decision to grant Murnu the National Poetry Prize for his version of the Iliad, which Topîrceanu considered to be entirely Homer's work.[99] The verse, alluding to a stereotype of the Romanian Kingdom as an "eminently agricultural" nation, is described by George Călinescu as one instance where the poet versifies "whatever should fall into his hands".[100] It reads:

Lucruri expuse pe larg în traducerea d-lui Murnu,
Harnicul nostru tălmaci care-a tradus Iliada, -
Carte ce fu mintenaş premiată cu premiul cel mare,
Pentru că suntem un stat eminamente agricol...[101]

Things dealt with in detail in the translation of Mr. Murnu,
Our industrious interpreter who translated the Iliad, —
One book that was instantly awarded the grand prize,
For ours is an eminently agricultural state...

While most in the Parodii... series are biting in tone, many others still are in effect pastiches. Here, George Topîrceanu's irony either targets unrelated subjects or is not at all present. His parody from George Coşbuc, Ţiganii ("The Gypsies"), was in effect a homage to his fellow writer.[102] Similarly, several poems are sonnets imitating the Symbolist and Parnassian poet Mihail Codreanu, and compliment his verdict that the latter was one of Romania's greatest sonneters.[103] Three epigrams, which disguise themselves as messages to and from Cincinat Pavelescu, are joking references to Pavelescu's baldness, but also highlight his value as a poet. Speaking for Pavelescu, the last of these pieces reads:

Talentul vostru-n adevăr
S-a mărginit numai la păr
Dar toată strălucirea mea
Nu stă-n chelie, ci subt ea![104]

Your talent, truth be told,
Is restricted to your hair
While all my brightness
Is not in my baldness, but in what's below it!

These pieces are similar with Topîrceanu's pastiches of A. Mirea, where, using Mirea's style as a guise, he actually deals with issues in his everyday life. Aside from Răspunsul micilor funcţionari, which shows him looking back on his bureaucratic career, they reference his dispute with an unnamed "fossil" (which has been identified as either Nicolae Iorga or Alexandru Vlahuţă), include a monologue addressed to his own bust, or attest his fascination with silent films.[105] A particular case is Răspunsul cometei (written in 1910; rewritten in 1927), where Halley's Comet speaks to humankind, making satirical references to Topîrceanu's adversaries (Gheorghe Bogdan-Duică, Mihail Dragomirescu, Ovid Densusianu and Camil Petrescu) and ending with an anti-war message.[106] George Topîrceanu's Parodii... also pastiched his close friends Otilia Cazimir and Demostene Botez, and, in one instance, claiming to imitate the poem of "a talented beginner", they actually republish an old poem he had dedicated to Victoria Iuga before their marriage.[107]

Two other poems borrow the characteristic style of poet Octavian Goga. Like their models, these make use of dialectal Romanian peculiarities and archaisms, for example spelling odihnă ("rest") as hodină, vostru ("yours") as vost, and inverting [o rază] vă binecuvântează ("[a ray] is blessing you") to read bine-vă-cuvântă.[108] With the second of these two pieces, Topîrceanu celebrates the end of Goga's collaboration with Octavian Tăslăoanu, writing a condemnation of the latter from Goga's perspective.[109]


Of all his poems, Balada chiriaşului grăbit was probably the most notorious. An instant success with the public, it became so read and quoted that Topîrceanu became irritated.[110] During the 1910s, it became a popular romanza and the pretext of a revue show.[111] Likewise, Noapte de mai is reported to have been a favorite of the socialist groups and the labor movement, being recited at workers' clubs alongside the works of Ion Păun-Pincio and Dumitru Theodor Neculuţă.[112] As a compliment, Demostene Botez wrote a variation on Balada chiriaşului grăbit, titled Tribulaţiile unui chiriaş ("The Tribulations of a Lodger") and, later, a poem titled Scrisoare ("Letter"), in which he addressed and pastiched Topîrceanu using fragments from several of his poems.[113]

Neither Otilia Cazimir nor Lucia Mantu married after their lover's death.[21] Cazimir, who treasured his memory, referred to him in the poem Martie ("March"):

E-atâta primavară-n noi, iubite!
Şi-n toţi fiorii care tremure-n natură,
Şi-n zâmbetul ce-ţi flutură pe gură
Se-mbraţisează visurile noastre tăinuite[21]

There's so much spring within us, lover!
And in each thrill that trembles throughout nature
And in the smile that flutters on your lips
Our secret dreams are embracing

The writer's temporary residence in Nămăieşti is nowadays the George Topîrceanu Mamorial House.[114] His brother Ion Mateescu made a gypsum bust of him, which Cazimir indicates was the subject for one of the Parodii originale, and so disliked by the poet that he smashed its to bits.[115]

are a compelling mixture of humor and delicate lyricism. Topîrceanu's favorite device is to switch, without warning, from biting sarcasm to genuine sentiment and vice versa, often with beguiling ease. In his own words he aimed to: "through jest, render tears all too clear".

Topîrceanu's most celebrated pieces, such as Balada unui greier mic ("The Ballad of a Tiny Cricket") and Rapsodii de toamnă ("Fall Rhapsodies") can be enjoyed for their flowing verse, on an infantile level, as well as appreciated for carefully constructed metaphors, incisive humor and contemplative ambiance. Other, more muscular and less lyrical pieces such as Acceleratul ("The Bullet Train") and Cioara ("The Crow"), display his command of the Romanian language, with cascading similes and emphatic rhythms.


In addition to his many satirical pieces, almost all first published as articles, Topîrceanu left an unfinished novella, Minunile Sfântului Sisoe ("Venerable Sisoes' Miraculous Works").


  1. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XIX
  2. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XIX
  3. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.325
  4. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XIX
  5. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XIX
  6. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XIX
  7. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.295
  8. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XIX
  9. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XIX
  10. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XIX
  11. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.307
  12. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.325
  13. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XX
  14. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.323
  15. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.323
  16. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XX, 307
  17. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.303
  18. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.327-330
  19. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XX
  20. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XX-XXI
  21. ^ a b c d e (Romanian) Oana Bugeac, "Iubirea lui Topîrceanu", in Ieşeanul, May 10, 2005
  22. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXII
  23. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.303
  24. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XX, 343
  25. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.295
  26. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXI
  27. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.292
  28. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXI, 339-341
  29. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.340-341
  30. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.292-293
  31. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXI, XXII
  32. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.320-321
  33. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXI
  34. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXI
  35. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXI, 290-291
  36. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXI
  37. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.285-286
  38. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXI, XXII
  39. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXI
  40. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXI, 295
  41. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXI-XXII
  42. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXII
  43. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXII
  44. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXII, 314, 329
  45. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXII
  46. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXII, 348-349
  47. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXII
  48. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXII
  49. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.297-298
  50. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXII
  51. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXII
  52. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXII
  53. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXII
  54. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.XXII
  55. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.287
  56. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.296, 297
  57. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.299-301, 335-337
  58. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.289
  59. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.287
  60. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.288, 289, 343
  61. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.321
  62. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.321
  63. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.305
  64. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.301
  65. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.295, 309, 312, 333
  66. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.328-329, 333
  67. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.317, 319-320
  68. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.331-332
  69. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.319
  70. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.325
  71. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.328-329
  72. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.323-325
  73. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.333-334, 335-337
  74. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.287
  75. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.286
  76. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.287
  77. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.286
  78. ^ Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.6
  79. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.289
  80. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.289
  81. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.306
  82. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.301-303
  83. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.303
  84. ^ Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.37
  85. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.304-305
  86. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.301
  87. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.309-311
  88. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.309
  89. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.315-317
  90. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.333-335, 341-342
  91. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.319-320, 338
  92. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.323
  93. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.338
  94. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.337
  95. ^ Călinescu, p.828; Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.317-318
  96. ^ Călinescu, p.828
  97. ^ Călinescu, p.828; Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.317-318
  98. ^ Călinescu, p.828; Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.66
  99. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.314
  100. ^ Călinescu, p.829
  101. ^ Călinescu, p.829; Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.62
  102. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.320-322
  103. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.335-337
  104. ^ Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.94
  105. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.325-327, 330-331
  106. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.327-330
  107. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.343-347
  108. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.331
  109. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.331-332
  110. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.303
  111. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.303
  112. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.304-305
  113. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.303, 347
  114. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.305
  115. ^ Săndulescu, in Topîrceanu (1983 I), p.325-327


  • George Topîrceanu, Scrieri, Vols. I-II (preface, chronological table and notes by Al. Săndulescu), Editura Minerva, Bucharest, 1983. OCLC 10998949


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