Dutch – Vondel Prize

The Vondel Prize is a biennial award of €5000 for translation into English of full length Dutch language works of literary merit and general interest.

Named after the most prominent Dutch poet and playwright of the 17th century, Joost van den Vondel, the prize was first awarded in 1996 and is sponsored by the Foundation for the Production and Translation of Dutch Literature.

The winner of the 2019 Vondel Prize was Michele Hutchison for a translation of Stage Four by Sander Kollaard (Amazon Crossing)


The Saif Ghobash Banipal Prize is currently closed for entries. It will reopen for the 2022 round in September 2021.

  • No unsolicited submissions are accepted.
  • Awards are given once every two years.
  • The next prize will run in 2021 and will be presented in 2022.
  • Entries must be translations from the Dutch into English.

For any queries relating to the prize please contact prizes@societyofauthors.org

2019 (presented 2020)

  • Winner: Michele Hutchison for a translation of Stage Four by Sander Kollaard (Amazon Crossing)
  • Runner-up: David Doherty for a translation of Monte Carlo by Peter Terrin (MacLehose Press)
  • Shortlisted: Antoinette Fawcett for a translation of Bird Cottage by Eva Meijer (Pushkin Press)
    • Nancy Forest-Flier for a translation of The Story of Shit by Midas Dekkers (Text Publishing)

2017 (presented 2018)

  • Winner: David McKay for his translation of War and Turpentine by Stefan Hertmans (Harvill Secker).
  • Commended: David Doherty for his translations of The Dutch Maiden by Marente de Moor and You Have To Love by Jaap Robben (World Editions).

2015 (presented in 2016)

  • Winners: Donald Gardner for his translation of In Those Days by Remco Campert (Shoestring Press)
    • Laura Watkinson for her translation of The Letter for the King by Tonke Dragt (Pushkin Press). 
  • Commended:  Sam Garrett for his translation of Tirza by Arnon Grunber (Open Letter)

2013

  • Winner: David Colmer for The Misfortunates by Dimitri Verhulst (Portobello)
  • Commended: Ina Rilke for The Black Lake by Hella S. Haasse (Portobello)
    • Johanna W. Prins and Johanna H. Prins for Mother Number Zero by Marjolijn Hof (House of Anansi)

2011

  • Winner: Paul Vincent for My Little War by Louis Paul Boon (Dalkey Archive Press)
  • Runner-up: David Colmer for The Portrait by Willem Jan Otten (Scribe Publications)

2009

  • Winner:  Sam Garrett for Ararat: In Search of the Mythical Mountain by Frank Westerman (Harvill Secker)
  • Runner-up: Francis Jones for What It Is: Selected Poems by Esther Jansma (Bloodaxe Books)

2007

  • Winner: Susan Massotty for My Father’s Notebook by Kader Abdolah (Canongate)
  • Runner-up: Sherry Marx-Macdonald for Daalder’s Chocolates by Philibert Schogt (Thunder’s Mouth Press)

2005

  • Winner: Diane Webb for Colors Demonic & Devine: Shades of Meaning in the Middle Ages & After by Herman Pleij (Columbia University Press).

2003

  • Winner: Sam Garrett for The Rider by Tim Krabbe (Bloomsbury)
  • Runner-up: Susan Massotty for All Souls’ Day by Cees Nooteboom (Picador)

2001

  • Winner: Hester Velmans for A Heart of Stone by Renate Dorrestein (Doubleday)
  • Highly commended: Paul Vincent for Metaphors of Memory by Douwe Draaisma (Cambridge University Press)
    • Stacey Knecht for Desire by Hugo Claus (Viking)
    • Sherry Marx-Macdonald for Darwin’s Dreampond by Tijs Goldschmidt (MIT Press)

1999

  • Winners: Ina Rilke for Roads to Santiago by Cees Noteboom (Harvill/Harcourt Brace) and The Virtuoso by Margriet de Moor (Picador)
  • Highly commended: Sam Garrett for The Gates of Damascus by Lieve Joris (Lonely Planet) and Mali Blues by Lieve Joris (Lonely Planet)

1996

  • Winner: Stacey Knecht for The Great Longing by Marcel Möring (Flamingo)
  • Highly commended: Noel Clark for Lucifer by Joost van den Vondel (Absolute Press)

Sponsors: