Willem Barnard

BARNARD, Willem (Wilhelmus). b. Rotterdam, 15 August 1920; d. Utrecht, 21 November 2010. Barnard was a Dutch protestant (Netherlands Reformed) theologian, pastor, writer and poet. He published about twenty volumes of poetry under the pseudonym Guillaume van der Graft. As a poet he was strongly influenced by Martinus Nijhoff. After graduating from the Grammar School he studied Dutch Language and Literature at Leiden. However, he stated that ‘I read more contemporary literature than Gothic grammar. And then 1940 came along, ... the quinquennial stranglehold [the occupation of The Netherlands]. I started studying theology, 1940-47’ (letter, 4 December 1973). He refused to sign the declaration...

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