Rūdolfs Kārlis Leonīds Blaumanis (1862–1908) was a Latvian writer, journalist and playwright. He is considered one of the greatest writers in Latvian history, particularly a master of the literary realism. Rūdolfs Blaumanis was born in Ērgļi, Latvia to a family of servants in the local manor, father Matīss Blaumanis – a cook, and his mother Karlīne – a housemaid. Until 1875, he studied in a private school in Ogre parish and went on to study in a German merchant school until 1881. Blaumanis' first story Wiedergefunden/Found Again was published in 1882 in a German newspaper Zeitung für Stadt und Land. In 1886, his first poem in Latvian Nakts/Night was published. From 1887 until 1889, he lived in his childhood home and wrote several novels both in Latvian and German. In 1889, he moved to Riga and wrote for a newspaper about Latvian cultural affairs. In 1890, his first play Zagļi/Thieves was staged in Riga. For a brief period, he worked in the New Current movement's main newspaper Dienas Lapa where he published satire criticising romanticism. In 1901, he moved to St. Petersburg, where he led a satirical section of the famous Latvian newspaper Pēterburgas avīzes. In 1904, due to the financial and health problems, he returned to Latvia. In this period, he wrote some of his most famous plays. Among Blaumanis' most notable works are his play comedy Skroderdienas Silmačos/The Tailor Days at Silmači (1902), and his dramas Indrāni (1904) and Ugunī/In Fire (published 1905, staged 1906). Blaumanis drama is characterized by sharp conflict caused by contradicting characters and inner struggles. Although Blaumanis was not directly involved in the Revolution of 1905, he supported writers who were. In 1908 his health started to decline, and although with the help of fellow Latvian writers he was able to go to Finland for treatment, his state was already critical and he died on 4 September 1908 in the Punkaharju sanatorium for tubercular patients. He was buried in Ērgļi, and a House-Museum for Rūdolfs Blaumanis was opened in Braki, his childhood home, in 1959. Blaumanis' stories have been adapted for many films and animations.
Tales, short stories and novellas:
Nezāle [The Weeds].1887.
Pērkoņa negaiss [Thunderstorm]. 1887.
Paradīzē [In Paradise]. 1887.
Aizvien lillā [Still Purple]. 1888.
Spijēnos [In Spijēni]. 1888.
Kā vecais Zemītis pašu nelabo redzējis [How Zemītis saw the Devil Himself]. 1889.
Īstā līgaviņa [The Betrothed Bride]. 1890.
Stāsts par cūku, kura runājuse [A Tale about the Talking Pig]. 1895.
Laimes klēpī [On the Lap of Fortune]. 1898.
Purva bridējs [Through the Marshland]. 1898.
Salna pavasarī [Frost in Spring]. 1898.
Nāves ēnā [In the Shadow of Death]. 1899.
Mopsis jeb Nelaime Tērbatas ielā [The Pooch, or the Misfortune on Tērbata Street]. 1900.
Dziru Miķelis [Miķeis from Dziras]. 1901.
Stulbenis [The Stupid]. 1904.
Vecais cenzors [The Old Censor]. 1907.
Mēmais precinieks [The Mute Bridegroom]. 1907.
Kā Jānis mācījies par kalēju [How Janis Learned to be a Carpenter]. 1907.
Koka krusts [Wooden Cross]. 1907.
Velniņi [The Little Devils]
Zagļi [Thieves]. 1891.
Ļaunais gars [The Evil Spirit]. 1892.
Pazudušais dēls [The Lost Son]. 1893.
Maija [Maija]. 1893.
Zelta kupris [The Golden Toad]. 1895.
Trīnes grēki [Trine's Sins]. 1897.
Potivāra nams [Potivaire's House]. 1897.
No saldenās pudeles [From the Sweet Bottle]. 1901.
Skroderdienas Silmačos [The Tailor Days in Silmači]. A. Valtera, J. Rapas un biedru apg. 1902.
Indrāni [The Indrāni Home]. 1904.
Ugunī [In Fire]. 1905.
Sestdienas vakars [Saturday Evening]. 1908.
Tālavas taurētājs [Tālava] 1902
Kā zagšus [By Stealth]
Mana lūgšana [My Prayer]
Šūpuļa dziesma [Lullaby]
Tautasdziesma [Folk Song]
Vēl tu nezini [You do not Know Yet]
Zelta jaunība [Golden Youth]
Ziedonis klāt [Springtime]
Labāko famīliju dzejnieks [The Poet of Best Families]. 1894
Īsa pamācība mīlēšanā [A Short Lesson in Love]1907.
Jocīgi kapu uzraksti [Silly Gravestones]1907.
Janis Rozentāls and Rūdolfs Blaumanis Museum // Association of Memorial Museums of Latvia [EN; LV]
Rūdolfs Blaumanis, about the author // Braki Museum website [EN; LV]
Rūdolfs Blaumanis // Wikipedia [EN;LV]
Rūdolfs Blaumanis // Online Library of Latvian Literature, Letonika.lv [LV]
About Purva Bridējs, the film // Latvijas Filmas [LV; RU]
Velniņi/The Little Devils, animation // Vimeo [LV]
Blaumanis Family Tree // Braki Museum [LV]Reviews
2013, Anna Kuzina, the Annual Latvian Literature Award for best research publication, for Blaumanis tuvplāna/Blaumanis in Close-up (pub. in 2013 by Madris)
2008, Līvija Volkova, the Annual Latvian Literature Award for best research publication, for Blaumaņa zelts/Blaumanis' Gold (pub. in 2008 by Karogs)
In the Shadow of Death
In the Shadow of Death (Nāves ēnā)
Title: In the Shadow of Death
Title*: Nāves ēnā
Paper + Ink, UK
This short story masterpiece tells of several fishermen lost at sea after the ice floe on which they work calves off and drifts away rapidly. One by one, the thirteen men and a boy must deal with the creeping reality that they may not see the mainland.