The German Verse Epic in the Nineteenth and Twentieth by H. J. Schueler (auth.)

By H. J. Schueler (auth.)

The nearly whole overlook of the verse epic as a style nonetheless necessary of significant dialogue and earnest research is all too obvious in German literary feedback. the single try and view the style in its evolution during the centuries is Heinrich Maiworm's priceless yet inevitably a bit of perfunctory ancient survey of the German epic which seemed within the moment quantity of Deutsche Philologie im Auf,iss. there's as but, although, no literary research of the German verse epic within the 19th and 20th centuries, a interval that is of specific curiosity to this type of learn and certainly an important to the style itself, because it used to be in this interval that the unconventional claimed its ultimate and it sounds as if irrevocable victory over its predecessor, a sort which had as soon as been hallowed yet was once now declared a lifeless style. it's not the inability of adequate fabric that may clarify this overlook, for by way of sheer volume and, we think, now not volume by myself, there's adequate fabric for a couple of research. The major goal of this paintings, then, is to try, if to not fill this conspicuous hole, at the least to start narrowing it a little, and in so doing to figure out in how a ways the ongoing lifestyles of this vacuum in German literary appreciation is actually justified.

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To make things worse, the whole work is heavily tinged with the author's rather unpalatable pro-German sentiments. (" ... doch uniiberwindlichJ 1st der deutsche Geist I Fortleben soll er in uns stets I" p. 48). The only really positive feature of the little epic is Saar's vivid portrayal of his characters. The close association with Goethe's work, which is manifested not only by the title of the poem, but also by such means as the actual incorporation of some of Goethe's lines into the text (Dorothea reads Goethe's work at the festival) and the repetition of such well-known incidents as the slip of the foot (Saar's Dorothea sprains her foot while dancing), while intended to lend an air of authority and literary tradition to the work, ultimately produces an almost parodistic effect (see Appendix).

I97) as the Prior puts it in one of his "Lehrspriiche", expressing sentiments similar to those of the pagan Druid. Here Fritz Martini's view that Dreizehnlinden again shows that the "Verserzahlung" was the form "in der sich ungefahrdet ein Optimismus erhielt, der sich der 1 See: Van Poppel, "Die Nachwirkung Scheffels in Webers Dreizehnlinden", Neophilolo- gus, X (1925), pp. 19-31. 2 Weber, Friedrich Wilhelm, Dl'eizehnlinden, Epische Dichtung, Leipzig, H. Fikentscher Verlag, (not dated), 242. 34 THE FLIGHT FROM REALITY Gute Gottes in dieser schonen Welt versichert wusste" 1 seems somewhat justified.

1957, p. 9ff. ). But Hackelberend's rebellious and insolent mood finally wins out and, standing before a crucifix, he declares his willingness to defy Christ himself single-handedly: Und ob Millionen zu dir beten, Ich Einzige'r, ich stehe hier; Versuch' es, mich in Staub zu treten, Ich nehm' ihn auf, den Kampf mit dir! (p. 109) What little action there is consists mainly of the recounting of Hackelberend's wild hunts. As a "Waidmannsmar" - the sub-title of Der wilde Jager - Wolff's tale certainly leaves little to be desired, but of epic qualities there is no evidence.

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