Guillaume Apollinaire

(26 August 1880 – 9 November 1918 / Rome)

Guillaume Apollinaire
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Wilhelm Albert Włodzimierz Apolinary Kostrowicki, known as Guillaume Apollinaire was a French poet, playwright, short story writer, novelist, and art critic born in Italy to a Polish mother.

Among the foremost poets of the early 20th century, he is credited with coining the word Surrealism and writing one of the earliest works described as surrealist, the play The Breasts of Tiresias (1917, used as the basis for a 1947 opera). Two years after being wounded in World War I, he died in the Spanish flu pandemic of 1918 at age 38.


Born Wilhelm Albert Włodzimierz Apolinary Kostrowicki and raised speaking French, among other languages, he emigrated to ... more »

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Guillaume Apollinaire Quotations

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  • ''I love men, not for what unites them, but for what divides them, and I want to know most of all what gnaws at their hearts.''
    Guillaume Apollinaire (1880-1918), Italian-born French poet, critic. Mercure de France (Paris) no. 33 (April 1, 1911). Anecdotiques (1926).
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  • ''It's raining my soul, it's raining, but it's raining dead eyes.''
    Guillaume Apollinaire (1880-1918), Italian-born French poet, critic. La Nuit d'avril 1915, Calligrammes (1918). On enemy fire.
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  • ''A structure becomes architectural, and not sculptural, when its elements no longer have their justification in nature.''
    Guillaume Apollinaire (1880-1918), Italian-born French poet, critic. "New Painters," The Cubist Painters (1913).
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  • ''The plastic virtues: purity, unity, and truth, keep nature in subjection.''
    Guillaume Apollinaire (1880-1918), Italian-born French poet, critic. "On Painting," The Cubist Painters (1913).
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  • ''To insist on purity is to baptize instinct, to humanize art, and to deify personality.''
    Guillaume Apollinaire (1880-1918), Italian-born French poet, critic. "On Painting," The Cubist Painters (1913).
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Best Poem of Guillaume Apollinaire


Dans la Haute-Rue à Cologne
Elle allait et venait le soir
Offerte à tous en tout mignonne
Puis buvait lasse des trottoirs
Très tard dans les brasseries borgnes

Elle se mettait sur la paille
Pour un maquereau roux et rose
C'était un juif il sentait l'ail
Et l'avait venant de Formose
Tirée d'un bordel de Changaï

Je connais des gens de toutes sortes
Ils n'égalent pas leurs destins
Indécis comme feuilles mortes
Leurs yeux sont des feux mal éteints
Leurs coeurs bougent comme leurs portes

Read the full of Marizibill