A great ambassador of the 30’s Generation

A great ambassador of the 30’s Generation

Terzakis is one of the most influential Greek novelists. He’s placed among the ambassadors of the 30’s Generation that infused an air of rebirth into the Greek literature.

He was born on February 16th, 1907, in Nafplio to the town’s Mayor Dimitrios Terzakis. In 1915, he relocated to Athens together with his family, thanks to his father’s election as a Member of the Parliament.

He studied Law at the University of Athens and received his practice license in 1929. However, he later gave up practicing law to commit himself to literature.

In 1937, he published The Purple City, one of his most famous novels.

In the majority of his works, he portrays the Greek society during the years among 1920-1940, wounded by the Asia Minor Disaster and overwhelmed by a mood of depression and reigning melancholy.

During the same year, he also wrote his first play Emperor Michael, a historical drama.

In 1940, he joined the army and served his country at the Albanian Front.

In 1945, he published his historical novel Princess Isabeau, later acknowledged as his most complete novel and one of the best novels of Greek modern literature.

Angelos Terzakis also wrote for the cinema and in 1954, he wrote and directed his single film Night Adventure, music by Manos Hatzidakis.

Post-war, he worked for the newspapers Kathimerini and To Vima, and also served as the director of the magazine Epohes.

In 1958 he co-authored The Novel of the Four together with writers Karagatsis, Venezis and Myrivilis.

In 1969, he received the Prize of Literary Excellence by the Academy of Athens for his theatrical study The Mystery of Iagos and five years later he was elected member of the Academy to the Class of Letters. He was also honoured twice with the State Award for Literature and the State Award for Theatre.

Angelos Terzakis died on August 3rd, 1979, in Athens.


– In 1940, Terzakis joined the army and served his country at the Albanian Front to the end of the war.

– In 1975, the televised adaptation of his novel The Purple City by Yiannis Kandilas, starring Thanos Kotsopoulos, was broadcasted by the Greek state television.

– Terzakis’s works have been translated in several languages, like English, German, Russian, Swedish and many more. Moreover, his plays have been staged in the United States.