[en] The results of an extensive spectroscopic campaign on the eclipsing binary WR22 are presented. A new radial velocity curve is deduced for the WN7 component, allowing us to improve the parameters of the orbit, formerly determined on the basis of photographic spectra. The high signal-to-noise ratio of our data also allows the detection of some weak absorption lines which, for the first time, can definitely be attributed to the companion. A study of their radial velocities gives a mass ratio of m_WR_/m_O_=2.78 leading to a minimum mass of 72M[SUB]sun[/SUB]_ for the WN7 star. The companion can be classified as a "late O" (O6.5-O8.5) star with a luminosity ratio of the system q=L_WR_^y^/L_O_^y^ at 5500A of about 8. The exceptionally high mass of the WN7 star and its high hydrogen mass-fraction suggest that WR22 is at the beginning of its Wolf-Rayet evolution. As a matter of fact, with such a high mass, WR22 most probably is still a hydrogen burning object. Therefore, the WN7 component is much closer to a main sequence O star with a "Wolf-Rayet clothing" than to the other members of the Wolf-Rayet family, which are rather highly evolved He-burning descendants of massive progenitors.