Born in Tartu in 1941, Jaan Kaplinski studied Romanic languages and linguistics at Tartu University and graduated as French philologist in 1964. He was a poet, essayist, critic and translator from French, English, Spanish, Chinese and Swedish, esp. of the work of Nobel prize winner Tomas Tranströmer, and died 80 years old on 8 August, 2021.
Jaan Kaplinski was one of the authors and initiators of the letter signed by well-known Estonian intellectuals protesting against the authorities in Soviet-Estonia in 1980. He was a member of the independent Estonian parliament from 1992 - 1995.