Josef Hirsal

Josef Hiršal

1920, Chomutičky — 2003 Praha

Josef Hiršal was a Czech poet and translator. He collaborated with his colleague and partner, Bohumila Grögerová, and together, they were awarded the Tom Stoppard Prize in 1986 for their work Let let. Hiršal came from a farming family. He received his primary education in Chomutice, where his family moved. After finishing elementary school, he studied at a teacher's institute in Jičín, graduating in 1940. Briefly working as a teacher and then as a forestry manager, he became an editor for the newspaper Svobodné slovo (Free Word) in 1945, followed by editorial roles at the publishing house Orbis. Between 1950 and 1958, he gradually moved through editorial positions at the publishing houses Brázda, Naše vojsko, and Československý spisovatel.

Hiršal was a member of the literary group Ohnice, centered around the poet Kamil Bednář, and published his poems in its eponymous anthology. From 1959 to 1963, he worked as the head of promotion, and in the review Knižní kultura (Literary Culture) as the deputy editor-in-chief. Starting from 1966, he dedicated himself entirely to writing and translation activities.