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Milan Rakić

Jovan Dučić (left) and Milan Rakić (right)
[From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia]

Milan Rakić (18 September 1876 - 30 June 1938[1]) (Милан Ракић) was a Serbian poet. He focused on dodecasyllable and hendecasyllable verse, which allowed him to achieve beautiful rhythm and rhyme in his poems. He was quite a perfectionist and therefore only published two collections of poems (1903, 1912). He wrote largely about death and non-existence, keeping the tone sceptical and ironic. His most well-known poems include An Honest Song (Iskrena pesma), A Desperate Song (Očajna pesma), Jefimija, Simonida and At Gazi-Mestan (Na Gazi-Mestanu).

Biography

The poet was born in 1876 in Belgrade. He finished elementary school (grade school) and high school (gymnasium) in Belgrade. In Paris, France he finished law school. After returning from Paris he became a diplomat for the Serbian (and later Yugoslav government) and remains in that job until nearly his death, representing the country abroad. He died in 1938 in Zagreb, Yugoslavia (now Croatia).

Publications

  • Collection of Poems, 1903
  • Collection of Poems, 1912

Reception

Although he wrote very few poems (altogether 64), his poems are considered some of the highest-quality Serbian poetic works. His works follow the school founded by Vojislav Ilić. After Aleksa Šantić and Jovan Dučić, Milan Rakić is generally considered the third greatest Serbian poet of the twentieth century. He is well respected for writing thoughtful patriotic and religious poetry at a time during which romanticism was the style of lyric choice. He is particularly well-known as the poet who perfected the hendecasyllable verse using rich vocabulary and calm imagery. The language of his poems is crystal clear, without obfuscation or unnecessary drama. With Aleksa Šantić, Milan Rakić had brought life back to Serbian patriotic poetry.