Basque literature

Written Basque literature arose from a rich oral tradition. Witness to this is the infinity of legends, refrains and poems handed down through this tradition.

Bernardo Atxaga & Xabier Lete (2009 - - cc-by-sa)
Bernardo Atxaga & Xabier Lete (2009 - - cc-by-sa)

Written Basque literature arose late in the day if we compare it with literature in the main European languages.

The first book published in Euskara is dated 1545.
Currently more than a thousand titles are published annually in Basque.

Early Basque literature was written by churchmen, they being almost the only persons who could write in the language.

Published works in Basque by lay authors and on all subjects - began to appear in the middle of the XIX century.

Many of these works have been translated into other languages.