1918 Nobel Prize in Literature
"in the field of literature, produced the most outstanding work in an idealistic direction".
LocationStockholm, Sweden
Presented bySwedish Academy
First awarded1901
1918 laureatenone
WebsiteOfficial website
← 1917 · Nobel Prize in Literature · 1919 →

The 1918 Nobel Prize in Literature was withheld the second time since 1914 because the committee's deliberations were still disturbed by the ongoing World War I (1914–1918). The war ended on 11 November 1918, a month after the annual announcement ceremony.[1] Thus, the prize money was allocated to the Special Fund of this prize section.[2]


Despite the ongoing war, numerous literary circles and academics still sent nomination to the Nobel Committee of the Swedish Academy. In total, the academy received 19 nominations for 17 writers.[3]

Five of the nominees were nominated first-time including Knut Hamsun (awarded in 1920), Gustav Frenssen, Alois Jirásek, Maxim Gorky, and Gunnar Gunnarsson. The highest number of nominations were for Finnish author Juhani Aho with 3 nominations. The Italian writer Grazia Deledda (awarded in 1926) was the only female writer nominated.[3]

The authors Henry Brooks Adams, Guillaume Apollinaire, Hubert Howe Bancroft, Olavo Bilac, Neltje Blanchan, Arrigo Boito, Randolph Bourne, William Wilfred Campbell, Ivan Cankar, Hermann Cohen, George Coșbuc, Max Dauthendey, William Hope Hodgson, Margit Kaffka, Harald Kidde, Paul Margueritte, Peter Nansen, Wilfred Owen, Georgi Plekhanov, Dora Sigerson Shorter, Georg Simmel, Carlos Guido Spano, Richard Voss, Frank Wedekind, Julius Wellhausen, Andrew Dickson White, Fanny zu Reventlow, and Anna Radius Zuccari died in 1918 without having been nominated for the prize.

Official list of nominees and their nominators for the prize
No. Nominee Country Genre(s) Nominator(s)
1 Juhani Aho (1861–1921)  Finland novel, short story
2 Henri Bergson (1859–1941)  France philosophy Verner von Heidenstam (1859–1940)
3 Georg Brandes (1842–1927)  Denmark literary criticism, essays Yrjö Hirn (1870–1952)
4 Otokar Březina (1868–1929)  Austria-Hungary
( Czechoslovakia)
poetry, essays Arne Novák (1880–1939)
5 Grazia Deledda (1871–1936)  Italy novel, short story, essays
6 Gustav Frenssen (1863–1945)  Germany novel, drama Bengt Hesselman (1875–1952)
7 Adolf Frey (1855–1920)   Switzerland biography, history, essays Wilhelm Oechsli (1851–1919)
8 Maxim Gorky (1868–1936)  Russia novel, short story, drama, memoir, autobiography, essays, poetry Bengt Hesselman (1875–1952)
9 Bertel Gripenberg (1878–1947)  Finland
poetry, drama, essays Harald Hjärne (1848–1922)
10 Ángel Guimerá Jorge (1845–1924)  Spain drama, poetry Fredrik Wulff (1845–1930)
11 Gunnar Gunnarsson (1889–1975)  Iceland novel, short story, poetry Adolf Noreen (1854–1925)
12 Knut Hamsun (1859–1952)  Norway novel, short story, drama, poetry, essays Harry Fett (1875–1962)
13 Alois Jirásek (1851–1930)  Austria-Hungary
( Czechoslovakia)
novel, drama Czech Academy of Sciences
14 Erik Axel Karlfeldt (1884–1931)  Sweden poetry Frits Läffler (1847–1921)
15 Peter Rosegger (1843–1918)  Austria-Hungary poetry, essays Karl Alfred Melin (1849–1919)
16 Carl Spitteler (1845–1924)   Switzerland poetry, essays
  • Jonas Fränkel (1879–1965)
  • Karl Alfred Melin (1849–1919)
  • Wilhelm Oechsli (1851–1919)
17 William Butler Yeats (1865–1939)  Ireland poetry, drama, essays Per Hallström (1866–1960)


  1. ^ "Nobel literature row: usually it takes a world war to disrupt the prize". The Conversation. 4 May 2018. Retrieved 21 May 2021.
  2. ^ The Nobel Prize in Literature 1918 nobelprize.org
  3. ^ a b Nomination archive – 1918 nobelprize.org