- Category : 1906-births
- Type : GP
- Profile : 2/4 - Hermit / Opportunist
- Definition : Split - Large
- Incarnation Cross : RAX Laws 1
Dutch writer, poet, critic and translator of world literature, who married thrice.
Clara Eggink was the daughter of Hendrik Jan Eggink (1882) and Clara W.M.C. de Laat (1885-1959). Clara was the eldest of three children of a broken family. Her biological father was a businessman, who after losing money in 1907 left his pregnant wife and the one year old Clara to flee to America. Without father they moved to Rotterdam. In 1914 her mother remarried Clara's stepfather Evert Jan Ebbeler, with whom she got a son Stef in 1916.
Clara went to the higher civic school (HBS) for girls, but she was more interested in elder men than in their peer mates. In Delfshaven she met the twenty years older poet J.C. Bloem (1887-1966) who was then her examination teacher (english and french) and felt in love with "the first man who did not bore me" she wrote in her memoirs "Leven met P.C. Bloem".
On 15 Dec 1925 they engaged and on 4 Nov 1926 she married Bloem. Through Bloem she was introduced to literary circles, but his family was opposed to the marriage. Moreover Bloem had an idealistic vision on women, that no woman of flesh and blood could attain. The couple got a son Wim (Rotterdam, 8 Sept 1927), an event that stabilised the relation for a while; but they divorced on 12 Dec 1932. This was not the end or the relation: their would follow many periods that they lived together.
On 16 Sept 1936 till 16 Jan 1939 Clare Eggink was married to journalist and poet Jan Campert (1902-1943). The marriage was childless. Her third marriage at Amsterdam to the jurist and merchant Hans J.G. Ivens, the brother of cineast Joris Ivens (18 November 1898, Nijmegen - 28 juni 1989, Paris), lasted from 6 Nov 1945 till 1949.
In 1957 she found with her houseboat a house in Kalenberg to which she invited her fragile and old first love Bloem. Bloem, now her friend, died here in 1966.
Clara died at age 84 on March 3, 1991 in the anthroposophic rest house in Scheveningen. Before that she lived in the Rosa Spier house for artists in Laren because of a cerebral stroke dating from 1981. She was buried next to the grave of J.C. Bloem in Paaslo.
With around 50 brilliant translations Eggink was an extremely productive translator of modern World Literature into the Dutch language. She translated amongst others John Steinbeck, Ernest Hemingway, Guy de Maupassant, The Brönte sisters, Somerset Maugham, Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Iris Murdoch and Brigid Brophy. She produced poetry all her life, wrote reviews and was several times member of the Jury of the P.C. Hooft Award and other major Dutch literary prizes. She wrote a biography about the Africa explorer Alexandrine Tinne (1960) and wrote autobiographical work like "Leven met P.C. Bloem".