Nelly Sachs won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1966.
A German Jew born in Berlin, December 10, 1891, Nelly Sachs began writing poetry and plays early. Her early work was not notable, but Swedish writer Selma Lagerlöf exchanged letters with her and encouraged her writing.
In 1940, Lagerlöf helped Nelly Sachs escape to Sweden with her mother, escaping the fate of the rest of her family in Nazi concentration camps. Nelly Sachs eventually took on Swedish nationality.
Nelly Sachs began her life in Sweden by translating Swedish works to German. After the war, when she began writing poetry to memorialize the Jewish experience in the Holocaust, her work began to win critical and public acclaim. Her 1950 radio play Eli is especially noted. She wrote her work in German.
Nelly Sachs was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1966, along with Schmuel Yosef Agnon, an Israeli poet.
She died on May 12, 1970.
Also Known as: Nelly Leonie Sachs, Leonie Sachs