Stephen Vincent Benét


Stephen Vincent Benét

Stephen Vincent Benét (July 22, 1898 – March 13, 1943) was an American author, poet, short story writer and novelist. He is best known for his book-length narrative poem of the American Civil War, "John Brown's Body" (1928), for which he won a Pulitzer Prize in 1929, and for two short stories, "The Devil and Daniel Webster" and "By the Waters of Babylon".

Life and career

Benet's fantasy short story "The Devil and Daniel Webster" won an O. Henry Award, and he furnished the material for "Scratch", a one-act opera by Douglas Moore. The story was filmed in 1941 and shown originally under the title "All That Money Can Buy". Benét also wrote a sequel, "Daniel Webster and the Sea Serpent", in which real-life historic figure Webster encounters the Leviathan of biblical legend.

Benét was born into an Army family in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. He spent most of his boyhood in Benicia, California. At the age of about ten, Benét was sent to the Hitchcock Military Academy. A graduate of The Albany Academy in Albany, New York and Yale University, where he was a member of Wolf's Head Society and the power behind the Yale Lit, according to Thornton Wilder. Benet published his book at age 17. He was awarded a M.A. in English upon submission of his third volume of poetry in lieu of a thesis. [The New Encyclopedia Britannica, Vol. 12, Micropaedia, 15th edition, Encyclopedia Britannica Inc. c. 1989]

Benét died of a heart attack in New York City at the age of 44. He was awarded a posthumous Pulitzer Prize in 1944 for "Western Star", an unfinished narrative poem on the settling of America.

It was a line of Benet's poetry that gave the title to Dee Brown's famous history of the destruction of Native American tribes by the United States: "Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee".

He also adapted the Roman myth of the rape of the Sabine Women into the story "The Sobbin' Women", which in turn was adapted into the movie musical "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers".

"John Brown's Body" was staged on Broadway in 1953, in a three-person dramatic reading featuring Tyrone Power, Judith Anderson and Raymond Massey, and directed by Charles Laughton.

Benet's brother, William Rose Benét (1886–1950), was a poet, anthologist and critic who is largely remembered for his desk reference, "Benet's Reader's Encyclopedia" (1948).

Selected works


* "Five Men and Pompey", 1915
* "The Drug-Shop, or, Endymion in Edmonstoun" (Yale University Prize Poem), 1917 [cite book
title=The Drug-shop, Or Endymion in Edmonstoun
author=Stephen Vincent Benét, Nathan Wallach
year=1917
publisher=Yale University Press
isbn=
url=http://books.google.com/books?id=eyMWGQAACAAJ
]
* "Young Adventure", 1918 ( [http://books.google.com/books?id=pxsxAAAAIAAJ full text] )
* "Heavens and Earth", 1920
* "The Beginnings of Wisdom", 1921
* "Young People's Pride", 1922
* "Jean Huguenot", 1923
* "The Ballad of William Sycamore", 1923
* "King David", 1923
* "Nerves", 1924 (with John Farrar)
* "That Awful Mrs. Eaton", 1924 (with John Farrar)
* "Tiger Joy", 1925
* "Spanish Bayonet", 1926
* "John Brown's Body", 1928
* "The Barefoot Saint", 1929
* "The Litter of Rose Leaves", 1930
* "Abraham Lincoln", 1930 (screenplay with Gerrit Lloyd)
* "Ballads and Poems", 1915-1930, 1931
* "A Book of Americans", 1933 (with Rosemary Carr Benét)
* "James Shore's Daughter", 1934
* "The Burning City", 1936 (includes 'Litany for Dictatorships')
* "The Magic of Poetry and the Poet's Art", 1936
* "By the Waters of Babylon", 1937
* "The Headless Horseman", 1937
* "Thirteen O'Clock", 1937
* "Johnny Pye and the Fool Killer", 1938
* "Tales Before Midnight", 1939
* "The Ballad of the Duke's Mercy", 1939
* "Nightmare at Noon," 1940
* "Elementals", 1940-41 (broadcast)
* "Freedom's Hard-Bought Thing", 1941 (broadcast)
* "Listen to the People", 1941
* "A Summons to the Free", 1941
* "Cheers for Miss Bishop", 1941 (screenplay with Adelaide Heilbron, Sheridan Gibney)
* "They Burned the Books", 1942
* "Selected Works", 1942 (2 vols.)
* "Short Stories", 1942
* "Nightmare at Noon", 1942 (in The Treasury Star Parade, ed. by William A. Bacher)
* "A Child is Born", 1942 (broadcast)
* "They Burned the Books", 1942 (broadcast)

These works were published posthumously:

* "Western Star", 1943 (unfinished)
* "Twenty Five Short Stories", 1943
* "America", 1944
* "O'Halloran's Luck and Other Short Stories", 1944
* "We Stand United", 1945 (radio scripts)
* "The Bishop's Beggar", 1946
* "The Last Circle", 1946
* "Selected Stories", 1947
* "From the Earth to the Moon", 1958

References

*cite book | last=Bleiler | first=Everett | authorlink=Everett F. Bleiler | title=The Checklist of Fantastic Literature | location=Chicago | publisher=Shasta Publishers | pages=46-47 | date=1948
*cite book |last=Fenton |first=Charles A. |authorlink= |coauthors= |others= |title=Stephen Vincent Benét: The Life and Times of an American Man of Letters, 1898-1943 |year=1958 repr. 1978 |publisher=Greenwood Press |location=Westport, Conn. |isbn=0313202001

External links

*gutenberg author|id=Stephen_Vincent_Benét|name=Stephen Vincent Benét
* [http://gutenberg.net.au/plusfifty-a-m.html#benet ebooks of works by Stephen Vincent Benét] at [http://gutenberg.net.au Project Gutenberg Australia]
* [http://www.fountainhill.org/history.asp Borough of Fountain Hill Official Web Site]
* (public domain in Canada)


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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Stephen Vincent Benet — Stephen Vincent Benét (* 22. Juli 1898 in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania; † 13. März 1943 in New York) war ein amerikanischer Schriftsteller. Leben und Werk Benét stammte aus einer Familie von Militärs, die seit Generationen aktiven Heeresdienst… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Stephen Vincent Benét — Le jeune Stephen V. Benét au collège de Yale Activités Poète …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Stephen Vincent Benét — Stephen Vincent Benét, 1919 Stephen Vincent Benét (* 22. Juli 1898 in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania; † 13. März 1943 in New York) war ein amerikanischer Schriftsteller …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Stephen Vincent Benét — (22 de julio de 1898 – 13 de marzo de 1943) fue un escritor, poeta y novelista estadounidense. Es muy conocido por su poema sobre la Guerra Civil Estadounidense, John Brown s Body, publicado en 1928. Ganó un Premio Pulitzer por dicha obra en 1929 …   Wikipedia Español

  • Stephen Vincent Benet — Stephen Vincent Benét Stephen Vincent Benét (22 juillet 1898 13 mars 1943) était un auteur, un poète, un nouvelliste et un romancier américain. Il est surtout connu pour son poème narratif de la guerre civile américaine, John Browns Body, publié… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Stephen Vincent Benet — noun United States poet; brother of William Rose Benet (1898 1943) • Syn: ↑Benet • Instance Hypernyms: ↑poet * * * Stephen Vincent Benét [Stephen Vincent Bent] …   Useful english dictionary

  • Stephen Vincent Benét — ➡ Benét * * * …   Universalium

  • Stephen Vincent Benet House — Infobox nrhp | name =Stephen Vincent Benet House nrhp type = nhl caption = location= 2500 Walton Way, Augusta, Georgia locmapin = Georgia area = built =1911 architect= Unknown architecture= Georgian designated= November 11, 1971cite… …   Wikipedia

  • Benét, Stephen Vincent — born July 22, 1898, Bethlehem, Pa., U.S. died March 13, 1943, New York, N.Y. U.S. poet, novelist, and short story writer. Benét is best known for John Brown s Body (1928, Pulitzer Prize), a long narrative poem on the American Civil War. A Book of …   Universalium

  • Benét, Stephen Vincent —  (1898–1943) American writer, brother of William Rose Benét (1886–1950), also a writer …   Bryson’s dictionary for writers and editors


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