Rainer Maria Rilke

1875 - 1926

Rilke was born in Prague, then part of Austria-Hungary, in 1875 and died in 1926. He travelled widely, and spent a time as the secretary of the sculptor Rodin. Best known as a German-language poet, he also wrote in prose and published in French. While his large and complex output cannot be summed up adequately in a sentence, it was strongly introspective and included examination of how individuals can relate to transcendent issues such as death and the godhead.