Paljetak Luko, F.C.A.

Deceased Members VI. Department of Literature
Paljetak Luko


  • August 08, 1943, in Dubrovnik


  • May 12, 2024, in Dubrovnik

Paljetak Luko, F.C.A.

Deceased Members VI. Department of Literature

Academic titles:

  • fellow of the Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts
  • doctor of Science


  • Corresponding member – Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts (SASA) (06/07/2001 – 05/12/2024)

Membership in Academy:

  • full member – Department of Literature (01/30/1997 – 05/12/2024)
  • associate member – Department of Literature (12/03/1992 – 01/30/1997)

Luko Paljetak is Croatian writer and translator, born in Dubrovnik on August 19, 1943, deceased on May 12, 2024. He graduated in 1968 from the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences in Zadar and received his Doctorate in 1992 from the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences in Zagreb with a dissertation on the literary work of Ante Cettineo. He worked in Zadar as a playwright and director at the Puppet Theatre, as an assistant professor at the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, and as editor of the Zadarska revija magazine. 

Luko Paljetak was a full member of the Croatian academy of sciences and arts since 1997. He was one of the most prolific contemporary Croatian writers with over 150 books.

Among the literary works for adults stand out Nečastivi iz ruže, Tri farse, Slike s izložbe, Nevenka Arbanas, Pojmovnik Malog čovjeka, Skroviti vrt, Crna kronika, Grenlandski leptiri, and Nevidljiva zastava. He published forty collections of poems, a dozen collections of poems for children, a dozen graphic-poetic maps, two novels, and he also wrote plays (Poslije Hamleta, 1993), radio drama (collected in the book Kazalište u zraku, 2001), fairy tales for children, children’s and puppet plays, haiku poetry, feuilletons, theatre reviews, literary historical studies and essays, studies on puppet theatre (Lutke za kazalište i dušu, 2007) et al. 

Of the literary works for children stand out Miševi i mačke naglavačke, 1973; Maštoglavice, 2015, followed by Slastičar orangutan, Ledomat tata, Roda u drugom stanju, Priče iz male sobe, Lavice na kavici, and Duhovi sa Strahurna. 

He was a prolific translator from English (William Blake, Roald Dahl, Derek Walcott, Oscar Wilde), French (Antoine de Saint-Exupéry), Spanish (Federico García Lorca, Pablo Neruda), Slovenian (France Prešeren), Italian and Russian.   

His most prominent translation work is James Joyce’s second Croatian translation of Ulysses (1991) and renditions of Shakespeare’s Sonnets (1984), Canterbury Tales (1986) by Geoffrey Chaucer and English romantic poets (Antologija pjesništva engleskog romantizma, 1996).  

He received the Vladimir Nazor Lifetime Achievement Award (2012) and Goranov vijenac Award for poetic work (1995).

Luko Paljetak was one of the most important and versatile Croatian writers of all time, and with his poetry, prose and drama for children and adults, as well as translation and editorial work, he forever indebted and changed the course of our literature. Many of his poems have been set to music and today are an unavoidable treasure of Croatian culture.