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International Internet Magazine. Baltic States news & analytics Wednesday, 19.06.2019, 04:25

Translator, poet Guntars Godins awarded Estonian-Latvian languages prize

BC, Tallinn, 10.04.2019.Print version

Estonian Foreign Minister Sven Mikser and Latvian Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevics announced this year's winner of the Estonian-Latvian Languages Award in Tallinn on Wednesday, the prize was awarded to translator and poet Guntars Godins.


"This year, the presentation of the Estonian-Latvian Languages Award is slightly more significant and formal than usual. It is a great joy to note that the joint initiative of the foreign ministries of Estonia and Latvia has turned into a dignified tradition, and it is already the tenth year for us to present the award," Mikser said at the ceremony. He added that this year, the shortlist again included very strong candidates whose work and activities have contributed to Estonian and Latvian language cooperation.


"The jury awarded the prize to an extremely experienced Latvian poet and translator who has previously translated nearly 40 literary works from Estonian. As a present for the centenary of Estonia and Latvia, he decided to go through a true trial by fire for a translator and take on the Estonian national epic 'Kalevipoeg'. After nearly four years, 'Kalevdels' was published. Congratulations, Guntars Godins!" Mikser said.


Latvian Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevcs thanked Godins for his remarkable and masterly translation of the Estonian national epic poem, which is an invaluable contribution to strengthening cultural links between Latvia and Estonia.


"Kalevdels", the Latvian translation by Godins was published in November 2018 and is the first complete translation of the epic. Godins has previously won the Estonian-Latvian Languages Award in 2010 and 2013.


The foreign ministries of Estonia and Latvia have jointly presented the award since 2009. The aim of the prize is to raise awareness of Estonian and Latvian languages and recognize the work of Estonian and Latvian translators, linguists and teachers in promoting the languages.


The winner is awarded 3,000, contributed equally by both ministries. Last year, the award was presented to translator Ruta Karma for her translation of Viivi Luik's novel "Varjuteater" ("Shadow Theater").


At the meeting preceding the award ceremony, the foreign ministers affirmed the excellent and close relations of their countries. Mikser added that whereas cooperation in several areas, such as defense, digital affairs, culture and regional affairs is successful, it is in our common interest to further strengthen it.


"In terms of digital cooperation, one of our goals is to further develop cross-border data exchange," Mikser said. He also expressed support to Latvia as this year's coordinator of Baltic cooperation, and recognized Latvia's work during its presidency of the Council of the Baltic Sea States.





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