Kossmann, Alfred Karl

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Kossmann, Alfred Karl Gender: M
born on 31 January 1922 at 12:00 (= 12:00 noon )
Place Leiden, Netherlands, 52n10, 4e30
Timezone LST m4e53 (is standard time)
Data source
Quoted BC/BR
Rodden Rating AA
Collector: Koppejan
Astrology data s_su.18.gif s_aqucol.18.gif 10°50' s_mo.18.gif s_piscol.18.gif 18°44 Asc.s_gemcol.18.gif 12°57'

Alfred Karl Kossmann (right, with Wally Elenbaas on the left 1961)
photo: Joop van Bilsen (ANEFO), license cc-by-sa-3.0


Dutch writer, journalist, poet.

Kossmann was partly of Jewish-German descent. His father Friedrich "Frits" Karl Heinrich Kossmann (10 March 1893, Den Haag - 31 March 1969, Rotterdam) became director of the municipal library of Rotterdam. Here his children were raised. His grandfather Leiden Professor Ernst Ferdinand Kossmann (26 September 1861, St. Petersburg - 1945) had been a German teacher of the young queen Wilhelmina. More details can be found in the online Family Archive of Alfred's twin brother, Ernst Heinrich.

E.H. Kossmann (31 January 1922 – 8 November 2003), was a noted Dutch historian. Ernst was professor of Modern History at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands. He wrote "De Lage Landen. Geschiedenis van de Noordelijke en Zuidelijke Nederlanden" (1987, The Low Countries. History of the Southern and Northern Netherlands) together with Jozef Deleu and his wife J.A. Kossmann-Putto. Their two years younger brother Bernhard Kossmann became a violinist.

Unlike his 10 minutes elder twin brother Evert, Alfred did not finish the Erasmus Gymnasium of Rotterdam. Instead, he worked for several years in bookshops and publishing houses. In the Second World War, he was arrested. He was forced to work for two-and-a-half years in Germany, along with his twin brother Ernst. In 1950, Kossmann published a novel, De nederlaag (The defeat), that was based on their experiences during the war. Alfred got the Lucy B. en C.W. van der Hoogtprijs of 1951 for it.

After the war, he worked mainly in publishing houses. As an experienced traveller, he wrote some travel literature.

In 1972 Kossmann had a near death experience after a car incident. He became severely disabled and was unable to travel or to pub loaf in his beloved Jordaan District in Amsterdam like before. He had to accept an apartment in Amsterdam Zuid with elevator. His novel "Laatst ging ik spelevaren" (Of late I went out boating) was based on these experiences. After the accident, he lived on the isle of Aegina, Greece for several years. He died in Amsterdam.

Both the work of Alfred Kossmann, the poet and novelist, and his twin brother's Ernst Kossmann, the historian, were characterised by distance and irony, being a tourist of live, but after 1972 he also described the disintegration of his personality. From 1 September 1995 till 27 March 1998 he wrote every second week a short column on the last page of the NRC paper starting with “De mannen waaruit ik besta” (The men from which I exist). The last column was written 3 months before his death. They were bundled by the linguist and Leiden University professor of Berber Studies Maarten Kossmann (b. 5 February 1966, Zuidlaren) as "Mannen waaruit ik besta".

Link to Wikipedia


  • Death of Significant person 30 May 1945 in Den Haag (Grandfather Ernst Ferdinand Kossmann, born 26 Sept 1861 St. Petersburg)
    chart Placidus Equal_H.
  • Work : Prize 19 February 1961 in Amsterdam (Price for artist resistance (see picture))
    chart Placidus Equal_H.
  • Work : Published/ Exhibited/ Released 1971 (Poetry bundle: Ga weg, ga weg, zei de vogel (Go away, go way, said the bird ))
  • Health : Accident (Non-fatal) 1972 (Described in "Laatst ging ik spelevaren" (Of late I went out boating))
  • Work : Prize 1980 (Constantijn Huygens-prijs)
  • Work : Begin Major Project 1 September 1995 (De mannen waaruit ik besta (The men from which I exist))
    chart Placidus Equal_H.
  • Work : End Major Project 27 March 1998 (De mannen waaruit ik besta (The men from which I exist))
    chart Placidus Equal_H.

Source Notes

Ed Steinbrecher collection: Gauquelin 6/1290

Svi: Koppejan quotes municipal archive time 12 PM (noon) 31 jan 1922 Leiden. Koppejan cooperated with Gauquelin .

In E.H. Kossmann, Familiearchief · dbnl Alfreds twin brother the historian Ernst wrote that Alfred was born 10 minutes after him (p.192).


  • Personal : Birth : Twin, triplet, etc.
  • Vocation : Entertainment : News journalist/ Anchor (Journalist)
  • Vocation : Travel : Other Travel (wrote travel literature)
  • Vocation : Writers : Columnist/ journalist (Journalist)
  • Vocation : Writers : Humor (irony)
  • Vocation : Writers : Poet (Poet, poet)