Ernest Hemingway


Birthday July 21, 1899

Birth Sign Cancer

Birthplace Oak Park, IL

DEATH DATE Jul 2, 1961 (61)

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American modernist author whose most famous works include The Old Man and the Sea, A Farewell to Arms, and For Whom the Bell Tolls. A Nobel Prize-winning author associated with the "Lost Generation," Hemingway became known for both his adventurous lifestyle and his eloquently sparse literary aesthetic.

Before Fame

He was an athletic teenager who participated in boxing, track and field, water polo, and football. Following his high school graduation, he worked briefly as a reporter for The Kansas City Star and subsequently served as an ambulance driver on the Italian front of World War I.


He wrote about his personal travel and war-time experiences in a tough, succinct writing style that he described as the "Iceberg Theory." He believed that only a portion of the deep meaning in his text-- like the tip of an iceberg rising from beneath the water-- was immediately evident to the reader.

Family Life

He married his first wife, Elizabeth Hadley Richardson, in 1921. He left her in 1927 for Pauline Pfeiffer and went on to have two more wives, Martha Gellhorn and Mary Welsh, prior to his 1961 suicide. Altogether he had three sons, named Jack, Gregory and Patrick.

Associated With

He was both an admirer and a drinking buddy of James Joyce.