Guillaume Apollinaire

(1880-1918)

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Photo of Apollinaire in 1917

The illegitimate son of a Polish mother and an unknown father, Apollinaire became the extroverted leader of the modernist movement. His reputation was assured by the 1913 publication of Alcools with its striking opening lines : À la fin tu es las de ce monde ancien / Bergère ô tour Eiffel le troupeau de tes ponts bêle ce matin (In the end you are tired of this ancient world / Sherpherdess O Eiffel Tower the flock of bridges bleats this morning).

Click here to read Apollinaire’s poem, «Le pont Mirabeau».