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Deutschlandfunk Blog … blogs. Brandanschlag auf zwei Bundeswehrfahrzeuge in Petershagen. Brandanschlag auf einen Neubau des Discounters Lidl in Berlin. The year eighteen hundred and forty-eight was a killing frost to aspiring literary talent Poetry and Fiction were outcasts during the fierce struggle for constitutional liberty, and the political crusade enlisted in its service every pen that dared to write. When the crisis was over, Sealsfield might have regained his popularity but for the reverses of his publisher, whose embarass- ments prevented the issuing of new editions of his books.
The author's derogatory and eccentric estimate of the value and uses of his own work, caused him to reject flattering offers for publica- tion that came to him from other quarters. In view of these facts it is easy to understand that Sealsfield's name gradually drifted into obscurity, even during the writer's own life-time.
The discovery at his death, in , of his identity with Carl Postl, the fugitive monk of the " Kreuzherrenstift " at Prague, awakened an interest in the author's mysterious past, but no Digitized by Google 2 F. FausL attempt was made in behalf of his works to re-establish them in popular favor. At the present day Sealsfield-Postl has for the most part been reduced to a mere name, his stories being almost entirely for- gotten.
It would seem as if oblivion were the final judgment of posterity upon the work of Sealsfield, were it not for the fact that other great names have similarly been unjustly dealt with. The subject of the German novel of the nineteenth century has not yet attracted scholars in the same degree as other depart- ments of German literature. Authors have been classified as in GottschalPs Gesch.
In esti- mating the author's place in literature, therefore, we must con- sider him first as an American and then as a German writer, and define his position in both literatures. The English translations of the author's works, being mostly very inferior reproductions of their originals, never gained an extensive circulation in the United States.
Since the study of the German language in this country was not approached with the same enthusiasm fifty years ago as at the present time, it is possible to understand the fact that the German romances of Sealsfield did not fare better than the translations. To one, how- ever, so devoted to the study of German literature as Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, the writings of Sealsfield were by no means unfamiliar. The following entry is to be found in the poet's diary. Longfellow, with Extracts from His foumals and Corres- pondence. Edited by Samuel Longfellow.
His descriptions of the Southwest are very striking. The Creole ball quite life-like, and the passage through the cypress swamp terrible. Though his works never circulated widely in this country, there is still abundant evidence that they became books for authors. Jackson represents the decline of the Indian race west of the Mississippi.
Tokeah and Alessandro, each the last of a noble race, are by slow but in- evitable stages driven to despair and death by the incursions of the white race.
The aged father of Alessandro utters prophetic speeches like the wise chieftain Tokeah. Ramona, the heroine, seems to combine characteristics of Canondah and of the White Rose. Ramona's life of self-sacrifice in the Indian village presents a striking analogy to Canondah's.
They are both ideals of Indian womanhood, and are the ministering angels of their people. Trent, William Gilmore Simms, p. Digitized by Google 4 A. These selections were copied verbatim by the piratical writer, and became pp. Even the divisions into paragraphs remain unchanged. He arranges the material into short chapters, but what precedes page is a bloody tale, with no connection whatever with Sealsfield's famous story.
The feeble eflFort made on pages to combine the two stories is truly ridiculous. Sealsfield's importance in American literature is not, however, based so much upon the stimulus he may have given to other writers, or upon the ntmiber of plagiarisms that it is possible to discover, as upon the literary and historical value of the works themselves, a fact which should become known and recognized.
Had Seakfield, when in New York City in , accepted the offer received from Appleton's for the publication of his complete works in an edition parallel to the German Stuttgart edition, the author would no doubt have long ago been declared worthy of an honorable place in the annals of American literature. The dauntless squatter and sturdy pioneer, the Southern planter and patriarchal slave-holder, the grasping mil- lionaire and his emissaries, the New York dandy and the society belle, the taciturn Yankee sea-captain and the hot-blooded Ken- tuckian, the utilitarian alcalde and the redeemed desperado, these have been endowed with enduring life in Sealsfield's works.
In their richness of historical materials, our author's works surpass by far the sensational romances of his Southern comtemporary, William Gilmore Simms, and when- ever Sealsfield traverses the same ground with another author, he rarely loses by comparison. Cooper's Indians are generally admitted to be less true to nature than Sealsfield's, while the sen- timental semi-savage Natty Bumppo, cannot engage our sympa- thy in the same way as the realistic and vigorous Nathan Strong, the squatter-regulator.
We cannot overlook the fact, however, that in weaving a plot and in rounding off a story Cooper shows greater artistic skill. Digitized by Google 6 A. Sealsfield has a keen eye for national characteristics, and intro- duces in all of his stories one or more foreigners, who generally become martyrs to his wit His local American hits and imita- tions of dialect add further picturesqueness to a style which is naturally racy and vivacious.
He is uniformly successful in his descriptions of nature in her grandest forms and higher moods, e. The artist is, however, lost in the contemplation of the details of his picture and rarely perceives analogies to human life. His account of the St Jacinto Prairie Cabin Book is nevertheless considered one of the masterpieces of German descriptive prose. Through his selection of interesting materials, and the constant succession of stirring incidents, the author in all his books attains a wonderful power of fascination, holding the reader spellbound to the end, an art which no doubt he derived in great measure from Walter Scott.
As in the case of Cooper and Bret Harte, so Sealsfield's produc- tivity allowed him little opportunity for psychological analysis, and similarly many of his creations are mere puppets or silhou- ettes. This is especially true of the author's female characters, which, with the exception of Dougaldine, the society belle, and Rachel, the squatter's wife, are either ideal importations from fairy land, or bacchanalians that haunt the dreams of an ancho- rite. The significance of these creations cannot be over- estimated when we bear in mind that American men of letters had at that time hardly begun to assert their national inde- pendence.
It is a difficult task in the case of a writer of such marked individuality as Charles Sealsfield, to discover what models were influential in the development of his art. Sealsfield was a pio- neer in letters, the founder of a new school of German romance writers. For this very reason, German critics have been accus- tomed to isolate him, to view him apart from his contemporaries, to dismiss him with the name, " der grosse Unbekannte," as one who had brought something exotic and mysterious from foreign lands, where unquestionably the trees and mountains rise higher, the rivers run wider, and the cataracts roar louder than in less favored Germany.
But Sealsfield cannot be understood when viewed apart from the age in which he lived ; he is truly a pro- duct of his time, sharing its prejudices, swept on by its swift currents. The years of our author's early manhood were spent as a priest in the city of Prague. There he lived in an atmosphere of cul- ture, and in the circles of the nobility, to which he had ready access, there stirred a breath of freedom in opposition to the tyrannical sway of Mettemich.
Up to his flight in , Carl Postl was kept in touch with all new liberal movements in European politics and literature. Faust new young German journalistic movement Descriptions of travel, daintily serving up liberal views in a half-concealed manner were frequently the device used by the new authors to get their writings to pass censorship. Sealsfield's Austria As It Is was in every respect a work of this class, a journalistic eflfort, a bomb hurled at political oppression, yet seemingly only a book of travel.
The author did not remain long, however, in the service of "das junge Deutschland. The inspiration for these came not from "Jungdeutschland," but from the success achieved by Walter Scott, Cooper and Irving. The following passage from Kert- beny's " Erinnerungen an Sealsfield" will illustrate this point: Dort ventilirt man in dieser Form alle Fragen des reellen und socialen Lebens, und die Masse des Volks, das fast nur Journale und Romane liest, zieht seine gesammten Bildungsstoffe beinahe blos aus diesen beiden Vermittlem.
Dies Genre aber heisst: Never a close student of litera- ture, he did not become thoroughly acquainted with the different Digitized by Google Charles Sealsfield. Indeed, he betrays at times a marked bias toward German models. What he especially admired in the English novel was the influential position it held in regard to culture and education, and his ambition was fixed upon raising German fiction to the same level. The author held up a wonderful kaleidoscope, showing ever varying pictures of the titanic strug- gle for liberty of young but mighty nations, and he presented them to the gaze of the enslaved of all countries, but especially as ideals of attainment for the dismembered fragments of the Ger- man people.
With roots in the same soil as "Jungdeutschland," the school of Exotic Romance, refused to interpret liberty as license, and battled against the vicious principles of its contem- porary. Sealsfield's works were written with an ethical purpose, as is expressed in an introduction to his complete works, Vol. Besides this, there are marked diflEerences in treatment, that have been best expressed in Gotschall's formula: Domingo, and the hatred of the contending white and black races. In depicting this race-struggle, he follows the model of Sealsfield's Virey u. In-so-far, he is the only true follower of Sealsfield.
Again, he is generally very happy in descriptions of natural scenery, and rivals the art of his master through his portrayals of the fjords and f jelds of Norway, a country which he has visited repeatedly, and whose social and political history he has studied carefully cf. Miigge's stories are better calculated to appeal to the popular taste than Sealsfield's ; they are less sketchy, and are carried to a satisfactory conclusion.
One of the most popular of Mugge's novels, Afraja , borrows a number of characters from Sealsfield's works. As in Der Legitime u. The old Finnish chieftain Afraja and his daughter Gula were clearly suggested by the Indian chief Tokeah and his daughter Canondah. The Danish pioneer and fisherman Helgestad is an exact reproduction of Sealsfield's Nathan Strong, the squatter-regulator, with the single exception that Helgestad turns out to be a villain, and ends disastrously.
Singularly enough in this story Miigge also imitated to a cer- tain extent Sealsfield's peculiar German style, his use of words, his " Sprache der Personen" discussed at length in my disserta- tion already referred to. We find Helgestad uttering such speeches as the following: FausL paper of which he was one of the founders in , but few of his articles found therein have any bearing upon the German historical novel. It is therefore impossible at the present moment to find any trace of a confession that Miigge admired the works of Sealsfield and was inspired by them ; though the internal evidence brought forward above points strongly in this direction.
The only statement found which in some way might indicate dependence upon others is the following, an extract from the preface to the second edition of his novels The part borrowed occurs at page , Zweites Buch, i. A plagiarism in an important work of this kind shows what an extensive influence Sealsfield exerted over all contem- poraries who wrote on American subjects. The remaining names of the school of the exotic romance are very numerous, but the most prominent are: Strubberg pseudonym Armand and Otto Ruppius.
The school of the exotic romance has had its uses as an educational factor in Germany ; it has also assisted in preparing the way for political liberty, by harboring in an artistic form radical expressions of opinion which would otherwise not have passed censorship. But its great service performed for German literature was the impetus it gave to realism.
The founder of the school himself has called realism the characteristic of the new type of novel. We find in Treitschke's Deutsche Geschichte im igten Jahr- hundert vol.
His writings represent the drift of the times toward Digitized by Google 14 A. Even the writers of the school with ideals less lofty represented the same tendency. If their tales of wild adven- ture do not appear realistic to Americans, they have appeared so at least to the European mind. Even at the present day, credu- lous foreigners will imagine they have witnessed a truthful picture of American life, when a band of trained Indians and performing cowboys have been exhibited before them.
The exotic romance therefore represents realism, and in the history of German fiction should be regarded as a stepping-stone, making possible the transition from the novel of the romanti- cists, to the Zeitroman of Gutzkow, Freytay and Spielhagen. It has already been shown in what respects Sealsfield remained in touch with German romanticism, it is possible to prove that he stood still closer to the realistic novel of Gutzkow. The lat- ter in his novel, Die Ritter vom Geiste , and in his later work, Der Zauberer von Rom , claims to have invented a new species of novel.
This is described in the preface to the first edition of Der Ritter vom Geiste , as follows: Sonst aber — lebenslange Strecken liegen ja zwischen einer That und ihren Folgen! Und Ihr verbandet das alles so rasch? Ihr warft das, was dazwischen lag, sorglos beiseite? Der alte Roman that das. Und doch liegt das ganze Leben dazwischen, die zeit, die Wahr- heit, die Wirklichkeit, die Wiederspiegelung, die Reflexion aller Digitized by Google Charles Sealsfield. Nein, der neue Roman ist der Roman des Nebeneinander. Da liegt die ganze weit!
Leider ist es eine polemische. Ein solcher Versuch, die zerstreuten Lichtstrahlen des Lebens in einen Brennpunkt zu sammeln, das ist die Geschichte, die ich Dir, lieber Leser, hier aufgerollt habe. Whatever Gutzkow may claim in regard to his Roman des Nebeneinander the idea was certainly not original with him. There are brought before the reader's gaze numerous race elements and castes struggling simultaneously each in its own way ; the reader views them as if a cross-section were made, as in a mine or a vessel, and hundreds of chambers were visible each with its own life.
His Stories of American Life were constructed in a Similar way, as will be seen from the following letter which the author wrote to H. Brockhaus, in , for the tenth edition of the Conversa- tionslexikon: He had possibly read it before this, however, and kept it in mind, wishing to claim priority for his own type of novel, which was certainly conceived as early as , when Der Virey was published. The fact that Gutzkow's Zeitroman has exactly the same plan of con- struction as Sealsfield's Exotischer Romatty though this has en- tirely escaped notice, is very important.
It magnifies the service rendered by the Exotic Romance in the history of German fiction, and adds new lustre to the genius of the founder of the school. The realistic novel of Freytag and Spielhagen necessarily re- quired forerunners like Gutzkow and Sealsfield. This plan of novel was especially popular because it suited so well the spirit of the times.
It attempted to present the truth by an exhaus- tive method, the world was to be viewed from all its bearings, — social, political and religious ; the whole of human life was to be pictured at one and the same instant in all of its complexities. The other momentarily attractive feature of the new plan was its hostility toward existing models. The individual was no longer of sufficient interest, a whole people now became the hero of a romance. Of what importance were the trials and doubts of one man, compared with the struggles and development of a whole race.
The revolutionary war which in politics swept over every little German state and city, had thus invaded German literature, had forced upon German fiction a new type, though not a lasting one. The old regime was, temporarily at least. Digitized by Google i8 A. In this treacherous work Sealsfield and Gutzkow unconsciously joined hands, and it is interesting to note that men of so widely different temperaments were by the presence of the times forced at: Unser Festspiel befindet sich auf Bl.
Die andern in demselben Bande enthaltenen Hand- schriften scheinen auf verschiedene Abschreiber schliessen zu lassen. Seitdem ich mich jedoch eingehender Digitized by Google 20 Theairum Cruets. Eine andere Frage ist die, ob der Verfasser ein Katholik oder ein Protestant gewesen. In einer Reihe von geistlichen Schauspielen ist der katholische Glaube durch verschiedene allegorische Personen vertreten wie z.
Digitized by Google R G. Jahrhundert, als die Ent- wicklung der Osterspiele ihren Abschluss gefunden, f Die Entwickelung derselben vollzog sich wie bei den Oster- f eiern und Osterspielen: Dass unserem Festspiel in der Maihinger Handschrift ein zweites Festspiel folgt, scheint mir von Bedeutung zu sein und nicht ganz ohne Wert bei der Frage, ob der Verfasser katho- lisch oder protestantisch gewesen.
Das zweite Festspiel handelt von den drei Weisen aus dem Morgenland und dem bethle- hemitischen Kindermord, ein Thema, das sich unter Protestanten und Katholiken gleicher Beliebtheit erfreute. Dazu kommt noch, dass beide Festspiele in das siebenzehnte Jahrhundert fallen und beide den gleichen Dialect verraten.
Der kirchliche Character ist beibehalten und dogmatische Richtigkeit its vor- wiegend. Der Mehrzahl nach sind die dialectischen Eigenheiten bayrisch. Ich bin auch weit entfernt, vollen Anspruch auf die Richtigkeit meiner Vermutung zu machen. Der deutsche Protestantismus hat sich allerdings nicht von vornherein entschieden gegen die Dramatisierung und Auffuh- rung biblischer Stoffe ausgesprochen.
Die Passionsspiele wollen ja nicht ein einzelnes Ereignis aus dem lieben Christi darstellen, schliessen sich deshalb auch nicht an ein bestimmtes kirchliches Fest an, sondern sie wollen alle wichtigen Ereignisse aus dem Leben und Wirken Christi in dramatischer Form zur Anschau- ung bringen. Rein, Vier geistliche Spiele des 17, Jahrhunderts. Ich weiss schier nimmer wo ich bin.
Mein lieber Gsell wie steht die Sach? Was wird drauss werden hindennach? Ist es denn kommen noch darzue? Das man mein Meister creuzigen thue? O wehe o wehe, was hab Ich than. Das Ich mein Herrn verrathen han. Ich muess bekhennen, Er ist gucth, Er ist yhe ein unschuldiges Bluet, Der Geytz hatt mich genommen ein, Yetzt thuen die Juden lachen mein. Ich will dich nit, gehe hin von mier.
Ist dier das gellt verleidet schon. So will ich nichts mit zue schaffen han. Das Werdens wissen zbrauchen schon, Gehe hin, mein Junge und stells Ihn zue. Verfluecht se'y der tag und die Nacht, So mich hatt in die Wellt gebracht, Ja ich sag es nochmal guet rund, Verfluecht scy die yhenige stund. Digitized by Google 26 Theatrum Cruets. Wass neues Ich dannoch fangen an? Kain Trost auff Erden ich mer hab Wo Ich hinkhom, bin ich schab ab. So wirst ein Trost empfinden gschwind. Wie ist mier nur an yezt zuhand.
Ich kan nit bleiben muess davon. Das nit dein Seel verlorn war. Ey Ich will mich selbst ertrenckhen Oder an negsten Baum henckhen. Belobt Im Himmel und aufT Erd. Eingenommen so vil schlag und straich? Ach mein Herz thuet mir zerspringen. Ach gebt mir doch ein threuen rath, Inn diser meiner hechsten noth. Joannes, ach wie bangt unss so sehr. Digitized by Google 32 TTteatrum Cruets. Wie mues Ich Ihr dass zaigen an? Ach es sollte bald geschehen Will sy Ihn noch Lebendig sehen.
Sollt du zum Tod verurthailt sein? Wie wirdt sye sein Jnn solicher noth, Sye ist ohn daz schier halber tod. Digitized by Google F. Egrediendo in publicum cu m comitaiUy dicii. Ach Gott Vatter, nun sey dirs clagt, Was thraurig Bottschaft wird mir gsagt. Soll Ich gerathen dein forthin? Soll denn lesum verlieren Ich? Was nembt Ihr Juden hie in Sinn? Unschuldiges Bluet zue Richter hin? Auff dise weyss zue danckhen ab? Digitized by Google 34 ThecUrum Cruets. Weil Er dem Khayser griffen ein. Nun Leyd doch lesus ohne schuld. Ach liebster Sohn, ach sag mier nur.
Wo ist doch solliche Creatur? Und mir armen Dienerin vertraut, Die wilde Thier seind khomen drein. Ist das die widergelltung dein? Das du Ihm nimmst das Leben sein? Denn diss ist meines Vatters will. Erinnre dich weh Muetter mein. Der Frucht, so wirdt ervolg sein, Digitized by Google F. Leyd mit GeduUt dess schmerzens Zwang. Weyl Jch Kan nimmer helffen dier?
Dass Ich Jnn sollichem Kampf bestehe? Und nit zu tausent mal zergehe? O Muetter, Die Craffi Gottes dich sterkhen thuet. Und schaff hiemit die Ewige rhue. So wallt es nun der liebe Gott, Mit dir gehe ich biss in den Tod. Ich mag kaum gehen, muss wainen nur, Warlich mir geth wass selzambs vor, Christus der Trost und armer Haupt Soll Er werden des Lebens beraubt. Wer wirdt nun in dem Hause mein, Digitized by Google p. Zuetragen diss Creuz Ihr mich zwingt, Ist unot, das Ihr also dringt.
Mich freid es eher von herzen, Ihr Juden thut solches ausschlagen. Und ich wills mit Kreiden tragen. Digitized by Google 40 Theairum Cruets. Drauff wend Er sich zu Christo und sagt: Mein Sohn, sey unerschrockhen nur, Und furcht dier auch vor khainer gfar, Das Creuz Ich dier aufigeben will.
Bin yhr zu schwach. Ach Gott was sich Ich do vor mier? Soll dier sein alle hilfT versagt. Ich dankh Dir, Liebe Dochter mein, Umb sollich herzlich mitleid dein, Das soll werden vergollt dier, Und allen denen, glaubs sicher mir. Denn diss mein Leyden zherzen geth. Und soUiches auch Betrachten steht. Digitized by Google 42 Theatrum Cruets. Wo ist hin khommen unser Gsez? Das unss bevolchen also guet, Nit zu vergiiessen Unschuldigs Bluet.
Wie menigklich ein sollichs weist. Das eizo gleich in diser stund. Digitized by Google p. Du hast es aber geschlagen auss, O Jamer, noth, o grosser grauss. Nun zvech Jch yez auss dier davon, Dass mein hab Ich mit Fleiss gethon. Denn Seegen, den Ich dier gebracht. Das soll auch in dem Herzen mein. Mit meines Herrn glidem all. Du Schlissel zu des Himmelsport, Bewahr unss Christo hie und dort.
Und sey gelobt in Ewighheit Amen. In the 83d chapter of Bk. I, we have a circumstantial account of a court festival or Christmas carnival which lasted twelve days, the particular performance with which we are here concerned taking place on the ninth day, which corresponded to our New Year. It was quite natural that this passage should attract atten- tion, for it was seen at a glance that, apart from a palpable inter- polation regarding Hesekiah, with its allusion to the Psalms, and the closing sentence, the above text contained but few genuine Greek words.
That the passage was a complete enigma to the Digitized by Google 46 Carman Gothicum. Everything about the description seemed un- mistakably to point to a Gothic chant or hymn in a Greek transliteration and presumably of hoary antiquity. And right interesting was the information which they elicited from the alleged Gothic text The ceremony in question we learned was connected with the Germanic Youl or Julfest, even the cry " Tul, Tul," which the anonymous narrator alleges was uttered by the Gothic singers, being a simple corrup- tion of YouL For more than a generation Germanists complacently accepted the general conclusions which the consummate scholars above mentioned had reached.
The next scholar to discuss the Carmen Gothicum was R. Digitized by Google Alfred Gudeman. Gaudeas bonas vicinas, Hagia heia. Gaudete saecli boni dies in certis certo Hagia heia. Bona amore inspicientes episkuantes-MS. Nana, deus, deus heia. Nana, daemonici daimonio iubili. And yet, in spite of the extremely corrupt state of our text, a closer approximation to the original seems still to be possible. Take another instance, imirxuavrst;. It corresponds to our " O Lord.
The epanalepsis, " O Lord, O Lord" is of course quite appropriate in invocation hymns, such as the Carmen Goihicum seems to have been, and it is found frequently both in the Old and the New Testament. If Nana is a divinity, as has been confidently assumed, then Tul cannot well have been one too, for such a close collocation of deities would be quite out of place and intrinsically improbable.
But be this as it may, the above examination will, I hope, have at least made it clear that there is nothing in the extant text to warrant the assumption of a new Gothic deity named Tul. I pass on to a brief discussion of a number of other readings and their interpretation. That the original was composed in some rhythm is, of course, very probable. I think there lurks in ytydttia the word " jejuna," y being habitually used in transliterating Latin j. It means on this " fast day," and would thus in a measure corres- pond to die vaciva and die sabbate. In the next hemistich, I read: We have already seen how improbable these identifications are.
There can be no doubt that the line is very much mutilated. Iber seems, indeed, to represent Eber, which would thus be the only Gothic word in the entire text, unless, what is not at all impossible, we assume that it was corrupted out of aper. So the very ancient Carmen Arvale intersperses shouts of " triumpe, triumpe" with frantic appeals for aid. At vos exiguo pecori, furesque lu- pique I parcite: The second word is equally tantalizing. This is improbable on many grounds. Gaudete saecli boni dies?
Bona amore Hiaxiavrtt;, 3. Die sabbate, deus, deus. Die vacivo, deus, deus. Tu ieiuno die vincito deus deus. Tu illo bello vincito deus deus. Tu illo die vincito , deus deus. Iber, Iber, iam tu in parvo grege, retroi, deus deus. Rejoice in good neighborhood, hail! Rejoice ye in the good days of the age as among certain things. At the festival hour let the trumpet sound. Lovingly hold sheltering hand over our possessions. O boar, boar, already thou art in the small herd! Cause him to retreat, O Lord, O Lord! The paradoxical title of this article is justified by the fact that no German poet of the present century, who never saw America, has found more genuine sympathy among both Ger- man and English people on this side of the Atlantic than the exiled Ferdinand Freiligrath.
The poet's long residence in Eng- land, too, brought him into a kind of native cultural kinship with English-speaking lovers of liberty both in Britain and in Greater Britain. Indeed, Freiligrath's sojourn in England forms naturally the introductory chapter of the present paper. As if forecasting his future exile among the English, the poet, even while an apprentice in business turned eagerly to the study of the English language. The immediate motive of this study was prompted by his desire to be sent as clerk to his uncle Her- mann in Scotland, whither the Wizzard of the North, Walter Scott, had attracted the young German by the magic of his stories and of his song.
In the poet's thirteenth year early in his uncle, who was in business in Edinburgh, wrote to Wilhelm Freiligrath for an account of Ferdinand's education, inclination and personal characteristics, with a view to adopting him as his son. Although he studied also French and Italian, which were essential to the equipment of a well-schooled busi- ness man, he seems to have had a peculiar fondness for his Eng- lish.
Digitized by Google M. In addition to his persistent labors in translating English poems, Freiligrath early conceived the plan of establishing some regular medium of literary communication between England and Ger- many, and he found others who encouraged his efforts. The enterprise was never carried out farther than the pros- pectus number, greatly to the disappointment and discomfiture of Freiligrath. England, realized in the founding of Hallberger's Illustrated English Magazine. In the year, William Howitt gave a characterization of our poet, which reads now, after the conflict of , more as prophecy than as criticism.
If Howitt had himself written this estimate of Freiligrath after the Glaubensbekenntniss had become revolution, he could not have given a more faithful picture of the essential quality of the poet's genius. They stand amongst those of his contemporaries with bold and prominent effect, and make you feel that he needs nothing but the recurrence of a more stirring period, the stormy dawn of a more eventful day, to spring forth into a greatness equal to the occasion. The originality and fire of genius in him is prodigious.
You feel that there lies in his bosom a well-spring of them, that only re- quires the jar of a social earthquake to send them spouting up like geysers into the glittering air. X VoL 21 , p. And then such snow and ice! In England the Glaubensbekenntniss found speedy response. As if freedom were not the living breath of all true poetry, or as if there could be found a champion more fit than the poet himself to defend the dignity and the existence of his noble art" This article quotes in English translation also the " The Lion's Ride. Digitized by Google 58 FreiUgraih in America.
In one point of view, we honor him all the more for the price he has paid for what he feels, and we feel with him, to be above all price. In this article, which is at once a tribute to the poet's genius and also a wel- come extended to him in this public way by his English friend, Howitt recalls the attention of the English public to the poet Freiligrath who is at this time a sojourner in London: From the impregnable citadel of British freedom, from amid the throng of free men who fear no tyrant's deadly hand, no blighting touch of censor or slave he will send forth his heart in his poems to his countrymen all over the world.
From this day forwards Digitized by Google M. To us the term revolutionary poem seems an anomaly ; spiritual, not physical force is the heaven- sanctioned agency for the regeneration of mankind. In the latter year, when the revolu- tionary disturbance broke out in Germany, he returned with joyful expectation of participating in the triimiph of the " Free- dom and Right," heralded in his poem of The delightful prospect of the return of the exiles to their Fatherland which floated before the mind of Freiligrath finds expression in the last hasty letter of his correspondence with Georg Seidensticker — " Sie kommen doch auch wieder.
Of this second sojourn in London we have many interesting accounts both in his letters and in the writings of those who knew him at this time. Of Freiligrath's life in England, Dr. William Barry has given the English-speaking public the following summary: He suflFered and beheld suffering all round ; in England in spite of its free government, in London in spite of its untold riches.
He became more of a republican and socialist than ever, but with advancing years his style softened to a clear affectionate manner of speech, nervous and delicate, entirely free from the blaze of color that announced his arrival among the poets. His convictions did not alter, but he no longer felt bound to deliver them.
He came to love England and has written much and gracefully on the incidents of his family life amongst us. Into London society he did not intrude himself ; on the contrary,. Freiligrath lived for the most part amongst his countrymen and was loved by them as he deserved. In America his renown in- creased greatly, for the causes that drove him into exile were and are still in action, leading to that immense migration of Germans across the Atlantic that grows with the growth of military institutions and industrial serfdom at home.
The emigrants naturally honored him as their poet, as one that had fought and suffered to keep them in the old cities by Elbe and Rhine. Andrew Johnson and Mr. Of the Germans in London at the time, who were close friends of the poet, were Dr. Deutsch, the Orientalist of the British Museum, Dr.
But the most congenial of all his German friends was Karl Blind. Freiligrath's attention was directed naturally at a very early period toward America, the refuge of thousands of German exiles for conscience and liberty's sake. His life in Amsterdam brought him into direct contact both with people and with pub- lications from America. It was this world-mart of Northern Europe which furnished the young poet with the materials for his early poems. Here he felt the throbbing heart of humanity pulsating in the commerce of many lands.
As early as the Auswanderer portrayed the vicissitudes of the emigrating German, who was then finding his weary way under the spell of Duden's book to the banks of the Missouri: This poetical joust between the " Trompeter of the Revolu- tion " in Germany and the great " Birdcatcher " in America was published in Philadelphia, the year the Glaubensbekenntniss ap- peared.
It is of such interest, as shedding light upon Freili- grath's views of America at that time and upon the reception these views met at the hands of some Americans as to justify reprinting both poems here. Reichtest Indianergreisen Deine Pfeife, deinen Krug: Du noch konntest es! Und der Indier Hangematten Schweben nieder vom Gezweig. Digitized by Google 64 Freiligratk in America. Zieht der Hammerwerke Rauch. Alles glatt und fashionable! Doch wo — Tiefe, Frische Kraft F.
Deine Lieder Fliegen weit. Digitized by Google Freiligrath in America. Doch der Weisze kann vergessen. Sah ein knab ich auf zur Eiche: Kann die Wuth den Weg ihr sperren? Da wo Klapperschlangen lagen. Und singst es dir? Wilest du dasz sie femer leben. Willst du hier Unsterblichkeit: On the steam- boat I saw the first beautiful woman I have seen in Germany.
I scaled two ancient ruins, and sitting alone amid solitary walls indulged myself in a little romance. I likewise made the ac- quaintance of a poet— one of the best of the young poets of Ger- many. His name is Freiligrath. I found him writing in a very pleasant room overlooking the Rhine I wonder how many times I shall use that phrase before I return home and near him, writing a letter, his wife. They are exceedingly agreeable.
FoUen with long, thick, black hair and a moustache and beard flowing into each other like the Mosel and the Rhine, — and behold Ferdinand Freiligrath! His poetry is fresh and vir- The next year, , William Howitt's book, which had given the English people a clear characterization of Freiligrath in , was re-published in America under the title: Thus the poet by the year was no longer a stranger to American readers, who were better able to appreciate his political sentiments than the Englishman upon whose ears they fell.
With the publication of the Glaubensbekenntniss in Freiligrath soon felt forced to revive his early dream erf visiting foreign lands ; this time, however, not for pleasure, as he had hoped in his early reading of books of travel, but for shelter from hostility at home. Andrews Norton, June 12, S.
Digitized by Google 70 Freiligrath in America. He has left us in a letter an account of this offer: Daran ist zu Deiner Beruhigung, wenn Dich der Artikel etwa alarmirt haben sollte, nur dies wahr: The true state of Freiligrath's mind, however, is revealed in a letter written to his mother and family from Brussels, Nov. This letter shows clearly that he had at this time no notion of taking up his residence in the new world, but rather intended to keep, as nearly as possible, to the borders of his native land.
Having outlined his purpose of settling "in irgend einem traulichen Ufereckchen der Maas," perhaps at Huy, he adds: During his "Wanderjahre" in Germany after , his thought still turned toward America. J But as the candidates for the place were all friends of Long- fellow, he was unable to make special eflFort for any one.
Besides, as he says in the letter, the authorities were likely to prefer an American. What might have been the result to American let- ters with Ferdinand Freiligrath as Professor of German Litera- ture in Harvard University is a matter of very interesting speculation. From this time Freiligrath seems to have settled down to his old plan of living in England.
His purpose of visiting America was kept alive in his later years by the emigration of his two surviving sons, Wolfgang and Percy, to America. In fact the other son Otto, who died young, had only been dissuaded from coming to Montreal by the earnest entreaties of his father. From the first meeting at St Goar in till the last years of Freiligrath's life the bond of sympathy between the two poets continued strong in spite of the vicissitudes of the years. The eflForts of Longfellow to secure a position in America for Freiligrath were rewarded richly by the latter's German translations of the American poet's poems.
The Ger- man Hiawatha became almost as popular as the American original and contributed greatly to the fame of Longfellow beyond the Atlantic. The last thoughts of the German poet after his return from exile turned to his American friend. In his Trinkspruch he closes with this reference to the American poet: Dem Pfade Heil, den du betreten! Hoch die Poeten, Die deutschen, in Amerika! Then among his very last words in a letter to Karl Elze he pays this farewell tribute to Longfellow, which are the most fitting expressions of the tender ties which unite the two great lands, Germania and America: The Masque of Pandora and other poems.
The library of Preiligrath came into the coUection of J. The correspondence between Dr. Seidensticker and Ferdinand Freiligrath is one of interest and importance as shedding new light upon the history of the period. It will be in place here to review the facts relating to the political con- ditions which occasioned the letters printed below. This brief survey will furnish abundant reasons for the bond of sympathy existing between Dr. Seidensticker and the poet Freiligrath. In the political disturbances leading up to the outbreak of , Seidensticker plays a significant role and represents the revolutionary issues of in their relation to those of forty- eight, thus forming a transition from the early political fugitives to America, Beck, FoUen and Lieber, who came in the twenties, to the great army of forty-eighters of whom Seidensticker was a forerunner.
Seidensticker's part in the revolution of Hannover began with January, While the situation under George FV. Seiden- sticker and the other participants of this " revolt " were taken prisoners and subjected to penal investigations. Though strenuous efforts were made to transport him to America as secretly as possible, many friends greeted him on the way to embarkation. Sddensticker's arrival in America was anxiously awaited and he was greeted at his landing in New York by representatives of the city and a large number of sympathizing citizens. Es war fast zu viel Licht nach so langer Finstemiss.
Schmoele, who had six years before proffered his hospitality to Seidensticker, now made good his promise. In the fall of this year, Mr. He began at once to solicit contributions for the paper from friends in Germany. It was at this time that he opened a cor- respondence with Ferdinand Freiligrath, who was then sojourn- ing in London. Freiligrath's well-known revolutionary attitude was sufficient guarantee of his willingness to contribute to German papers in America, which sympathized with the cause of liberty in the Fatherland.
This reply to Seidensticker's first letter leaves no doubt on this question: Under date of January, , Gustav v. Struve writes from Mannheim to Seidensticker, intimating the receipt of a letter from Oppermann in Hoya ; he asks him for contributions and ex- changes with America ; Struve expresses his willingness to send his paper Deutscher Zuschauer and also larger works of " pub- licistischen Inhalts ": He says that an exchange of ideas would not only be of interest to the emigrants but to all Germans who are open to republican views. Morwitz, the father of Mr. X Unfinished letter in MS.
Digitized by Google Clara Seidensticker. He quarrelled with the ultra- montane party who had ruled him and the country for years ; he ordered the university to be closed and the students to leave for not showing proper respect to the " Countess of Landsfeldt. Digitized by Google 78 Letters of Freiltgrath. February of the year brought the " glorreiche Revolution," mentioned in letter 6, stirring the republican spirits in Germany again and urging them to make another attempt to break the omnipotency of their monarchical governments. In Austria, Prince Mettemich "Mettemich zum Teufel," letter 7 , president of the ministerial council, whose principle had been to defend majesty at any price against the attacks of the new party, was forced to resign his office and take refuge in England.
The contributions mentioned in No. This was soon to be followed by similar demonstrations in other States. In Hannover the revolution forced from old Ernst Augustus the reinstatement of political fugitives. The friends in Germany, as well as many of the exiles them- selves, hoped and expected that those who had been expatriated would return. Hence Freiligrath's pathetic appeal in his last hasty epistle to Seidensticker: Digitized by Google Clara Sddensiicker.
Erlauben Sie mir aber, dass ich Ihnen einen wackem u. Ich kann Ihnen keinen prompteren und in jeder Hinsicht gewissenhafteren Mann empfehlen, u. Eine Probe davon liegt schon jetzt bei. Als Spaltenfutter wird Ihnen der- gleichen immer willkommen sein. Mit aufrichtigster Hochachtung und innigster Theilnahme, wahrhaft ergeben der Ihrige, F. Digitized by Google Clara SeidensHcker. Zwei Gedichte von Hoffmann von Fallersleben. Ich bin Sklave meines Berufs nicht um zu lukriren sondern um mich und die Meinen ehrlich durchzubringen, d.
Und dann steuere ich Ihnen gewiss! Eichthal, wenn ich bitten darf! Heinzen ist jetzt im Waadtland. Mit aufrichtiger Hochachtung, treu und ergeben der Ihrige, F. Digitized by Google 82 Letters of Freiligrath. Juni, V7- Verehrter Herr und Freund: Agent genannt ncuhJtalHger u. Eine Liste der Eingeladenen schick' ich Ihnen, wie sich von selbst versteht, seiner Zeit ein. Deswegen weil die diesmalige Kiste schon gestern nach Liverpool abging erhalten Sie die erste Zeitungssendung erst mit folgendem Steamer Entschuldigen Sie meine Eile, u.
Herzlich der Ihre, F. Digitized by Google 84 Letters of Freiligrath. Verehrter Herr und Freund: Auf meinen Brief vom 3. Mein Zeitungs packet vom Hoffentlich geht es Ihnen wohl in der neuen Heimath! Das ist wenigstens der herzliche Wunsch. Ihre beiden Briefe vom 8. Herr Gott, welche Ereignisse — diese glorreiche Revolution zu Paris und ihre jetzt schon vor u. Herrlichkeit des Volkes noch nicht erlebt in der Geschichte!
Ihre Zuschrift vom August d. Ich fand, ein neues Packet bringend, trotz aller Er- mahnungen oft noch das alte vor, u. Nicht in England gedruckte Zeitungen kann ich hier nicht unter Kreuzband zur Post geben. Zeitungen alle Pariser Nachrichten bis dahin enthaltend, auch schon einige deutsche Notizen von Wichtigkeit diesmal ausnahmsweise direct in einem Packetchen p. Die Londoner deutsche Ztg. Der Anfang ist schon mit den letzen Posten gemacht worden. Es ist eine wunderbare Zeit! Hoffentlich haben Sie das Zeitungspacket welches ich mit vorigem Steamer an Sie abschickte, erhalten. Aber dieses Berliner Blut will mir nicht aus dem Kopf!
Ich kann mir nicht denken, dass es nur in " majorem Priderici gloriam " vergossen sein sollte! Anliegend auch noch eine Kleinigkeit, dis vor dem eintreffen der Berliner u. Ach, was sind jetzt Verse, neben den Ungeheuern Ereignissen! Nur zwei Worte heute. In Deutschland wird sich Alles machen. Immer von ganzem Herzen, Ihr, F.
By Kuno Francke, Ph. From the German Department of Harvard University comes a work of lasting value on German literature, history and civilization as cor- related and interdependent. The merit of Francke' s work, apart from its inner value, lies in the fact that the author turns energetically once for all against the spirit of slavish imitation of German literary historians. Francke' s work itself in its annotations is a tacit condemnation of the meagerness and poverty of contemporaneous literary German scholarship which prevails in this country in spite of a great activity in more or less elementary text-book editions, made up without any spe- cial original effort from the convenient commentaries of German scholars.
Francke has quoted scarcely a dozen American scholars whom he deemed worthy of serving him as sources ; of historians he has quoted none. Of course it is to be doubted whether he might not have derived some benefit for the comparatively weaker parts of his standard work by consulting some other American sources which he ignored; for instance, the breadth and depth of the Walthari Legend and some phases of Reformation literature. It is true that not all of the best critics and thinkers acknowledge this interdependence between social forces and literature to such an extent as Francke does.
Grillparzer, who undoubtedly was an artistic force of first rank, for instance, says: Taine shows that the work of an author is not a mere fancy of imagination, not a capri- cious result of a hot inner struggle, but a reflection of the prevailing customs and cultural conditions, an expression of an intellectual status of a nation at a given period.
From this we infer that out of the literary monuments it can be proven how the people centuries ago felt and thought. Undoubtedly Goethe felt deeply the sig- nificance of Frederick the Great for German literature. The highly aristocratic renaissance period in England produced Ben Johnson, once a mason's apprentice, and immortal Shakespeare, a glove-maker's son; the classical era, Sheridan and Swift, who sprang fi-om abject poverty ; and, on the other hand, the new extreme democracy, the sons of high nobility: Therefore Goethe's Golden Tree of Life is in many places of Francke' s otherwise so admirable work, preferable to the gray theory of the latter.
It is an ungrateful task to criticize a book which the more excellent it be, the more idiosyncracies it may betray. Kestner's epigram con- fronts the critic still: Doch manche Critici, die bleiben ewig Jungen. He judges from the point of view of his highest political ideals, his "Weltanschauung," and his conception of the world is a deep sentiment and a warm heart for the suffering of the great masses, the poor and lowly. Further, Francke has not lost himself in specialization.
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I certainly least of all would dare to censure even the exaggerated modem special- ization and empirical detail-investigation. It is easy for a man who plunges into a little domain of research to exhaust it and to enter a little deeper than his predecessors. But so much is sure that the historian and the historian of literature is lost when he is but a specialist and detail investigator, inasmuch as he always centers his attention upon the single detail, never acquires a survey, a comprehen- sive view, and thus deprives himself of the possibility of understanding the great logical connection of facts.
Francke is certainly a universalist, a cosmopolitan, who tries to under- stand the Germanic world in its great content, in its continuity and philosophical evolution ; he seeks to inherently explain the fate of the German nation, to construe a whole from the fragmentary historical and literary heritage of German thinkers ; he seeks the life-principle, the higher unity of the manifold.
So far, so good. But to do this he would have to be an accomplished connoisseur of men and things, Digitized by Google 92 Reviews. German men and things withal ; he would have to survey with an intuitive spirit, with universal knowledge the peaks and valleys of German life under all conditions and in all ages. He would have to compress, as it were, like a great artist the inexhaustible sea of details, reflect the life of the great nation in a mirror and represent it after the discovery of all the causes which produce German life as expressed in its literature.
Has Francke fully succeeded in this task? Here is the strength and the weakness of his book. To this social, or perhaps rather socialistic, conviction of his he subordinates, rightly or wrongly, everything. Digitized by Google Francke. His theories constitute part and parcel of his intellectual and moral make-up and political conviction. He states clearly that through industrialism the modem world has been ground into a mass of inor- ganic atoms, that the very essence of modern society is a merciless struggle for material existence, and that the masses are crowded together in a few colossal workshops managed for private benefit ; he speaks of the splitting up of the national body into the toiling many and the enjoying few.