A sad loss

Markas Zingeris, a writer, a publicist passed away yesterday at the age of 77

Markas Zingeris graduated as a journalist from Vilnius University and taught philosophy at Kaunas higher education institutions. After refusing to join the Communist Party, he was dismissed from his job and expelled from his postgraduate studies in philosophy. He worked at Kaunas Museum, the Academy of Agriculture, the International Commission for Historical Justice, etc., and from 2005 to 2019, he was the director of Vilna Gaon Museum of Jewish History.

M. Zingeris’ books include “Namas iš kedro” (“House of Cedar”) (1984), “Vakaras vaikystėje” (“An Evening in Childhood”) (1989), “Šitiek saulėlydžių” (“Such an Abundance of Sunsets”) (1993), “Aplink fontaną, arba Mažasis Paryžius” (“Around the Fountain or Little Paris”) (1998), “Iliuzionas” (“The Illusion”) (2000), and “Grojimas dviese” (Playing in Two Pieces) (2002), “Sezonas su šokėja” (A Season with a Dancer) (2005), “Rudens ir pavasario pasikalbėjimas” (The Autumn and Spring Conversation) (2009), “Aš sėdėjau Stalinui ant kelių” (I Sat on Stalin’s Lap) (2017). His works have been translated into English, Swedish, French, German, Italian, Hungarian, and Polish.

President Gitanas Nausėda, Prime Minister Ingrida Šimonytė, Speaker of the Seimas Viktorija Čmilytė-Nielsen, and Minister of Culture Simonas Kairys expressed their condolences for the death of Markas Zingeris. “Lithuanian society and the wider cultural community have lost an intellectual writer who was demanding of himself and the text, both written and read. As a long-time director of Vilna Gaon Museum of Jewish History, a publicist, and an active member of the society, M. Zingeris was a wise, talented, and important personality connecting Lithuanian and Jewish cultures,” the Head of State said in his condolence message published on Thursday.
In her condolences, Prime Minister Ingrida Šimonytė stressed that “Markas Zingeris, a bright cultural personality, a talented master of words and an original observer of the world around us, passed away.” “The paradoxes of everyday life, encoded in his works, are an important legacy for future generations seeking wisdom. As head of Vilna Gaon Museum of Jewish History, he laid many roads to memory and helped us understand the painful lessons of history. My heartfelt condolences extend to the family, relatives, and friends. All those who had the good fortune to know this intellectual,” said the Head of Government in her condolences.
In the words of the Minister of Culture, Simonas Kairys, the writer’s work combined “a profound insight into the paradoxes of human life, the absurdities of the world, and at the same time, a kind of playfulness, smile, and irony.” “The writer revived the memory with sensitivity and subtlety not only through his books but also through his leadership of Vilna Gaon Museum of Jewish History, to which he dedicated many years of his life. My sincere condolences go to the deceased’s relatives and the entire cultural and artistic community,” said the Minister of Culture in his message of condolence.
“We have lost an outstanding personality, a talented writer, and a long-standing Vilna Gaon State Museum director. My heartfelt condolences go out to my colleague Emanuelis Zingeris for the death of his brother and his family, relatives, and the entire cultural community,” said V.Čmilytė-Nielsen in her condolences.

Members of the International Commission and the Secretariat extend their sincere condolences to the family of Markas Zingeris and the deceased’s brother, the Chairman of the Commission, Emanuelis Zingeris.