Kallas, Aino

Kallas, Aino Image 1

Aino Kallas 1922

The Finnish-Estonian writer Aino Kallas (born Aino Krohn, 1878–1956) can still be seen as one of the most international Finnish writers. After marrying Estonian scholar and cultural activist Oskar Kallas in 1900, she moved to St. Petersburg, then to Tartu in Estonia, and later to London, where her husband acted as an ambassador in the years 1922–1934. It was during her years in London that Aino Kallas published her major novels: Barbara von Tisenhusen (1923), The Rector of Reigi (1926) and The Wolf’s Bride (1928), which form a trilogy entitled Eros, the Slayer. Although she wrote in Finnish, Kallas took her subject matter from Estonian history.
During World War II she was forced to leave Estonia and settle in Stockholm. After her husband’s death she wanted to return to her native land, but it was only three years prior to her death that she was finally given Finnish citizenship again.
Aino Kallas was awarded the Finnish State Prize for Literature in 1907, 1920, 1926, 1928 and 1942.
Tauno Pylkkänen’s opera based on Kallas’ novel The Wolf’s Bride won the Prix Italia 1950.