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Bidding Information
Lot #    13982
Auction End Date    4/25/2006 10:22:00 AM (mm/dd/yyyy)
Title Information
Title (English)    Schiller. Die Worte des Glaubens
Author    [Only Ed.] Dr. J. Loevy
City    Graudenz
Publisher    Gustav Röthes
Publication Date    1905
Collection Information
Independent Item    This listing is an independent item not part of any collection
Description Information
   Only edition. 16 pp., octavo, 199:135 mm., wide margins, light age staining, stamps, plate. A very good copy bound in contemporary half cloth and marbled paper over boards, rubbed.
   Commemorative discourses on the centennial of the poet Friedrich Von Schiller by Dr. J. Loevy. The full title is Schiller. Die Worte des Glaubens. Drei kanzelreden zum Jahrhundert-Gedächtnis des Dichters (Schiller. Words of Faith. Three sermons in memory of the poet on his 100th anniversary). The author, Dr. J. Loevy, is identified as rabbi of the community synagoigue of Graudenz. There is verse entitled Die Worte des Glaubens on the verso fo the title page and then the discourses, delivered on Am ersten tage des Passahfestes April 20th (first day of Passover); Am lesten tage des Passahfestes April 27th (last day of Passover); and Neumondshabbat im Mai (the new moon Shabbat) May 6th, 1905.

Friedrich Von Schiller (17591805) was a German poet, playwright, and philosopher, whose works influenced Hebrew literature and the Haskalah. Schiller had only a few Jewish contacts, although he knew the writings of Moses Mendelssohn and had a high regard for Solomon Maimon. Schiller's stage adaptation of 1801 popularized Lessing's Nathan der Weise. In his own writings there are only a few allusions to Jews. Perhaps the most intriguing of these is Moritz Spiegelberg, a character in his early drama Die Raeuber (1781). Though not explicitly presented as a Jew, Spiegelberg occasionally lapses into a Judeo-German idiom, speaks of Judaizing, and even refers to a project for the reestablishment of a Jewish state. In this portrayal Schiller may have had in mind the ideas diffused at the time in his native Wuerttemberg by followers of Jacob Frank. Although Ludwig Geiger and others denied that the character was a Jew, the Nazis inevitably presented him as one. During the 1920s, Erwin Piscator's Berlin production of Die Raeuber presented Spiegelberg in the guise of Leon Trotsky.

There are echoes of biblical style in Schiller's poems, as in the ode to joy, "An die Freude," and in his dramas. While Schiller praised the "Hebrew nation" as important for universal history" in his treatise Ueber die Sendung Moses (1790), he also adopted the hostile Bible interpretation quoted by Voltaire, claiming that leprosy was the chief cause of the Exodus from Egypt. Translations and imitations of Schiller's poems and plays were published by maskilim in Galicia, and later in Russian Poland, notably by Abraham Ber Gottlober, Micah Joseph Lebensohn, Meir Halevi Letteris, and Solomon Judah Rapoport. Between 1817 and 1957 almost 60 Hebrew versions of works by Schiller by more than 80 translators were published. They include Bialik's translation of the drama Wilhelm Tell. Yiddish parodies of Schiller's poems were extremely popular; Orthodox homes which banned other non-religious literature made an exception in the case of his works. German Jews, too, showed admiration for Schiller. Heine, who parodied "An die Freude" in his "Prinzessin Sabbat," praised Schiller as the poet of freedom and internationalism. Ludwig August Frankl and Leopold Kompert showed their admiration for him in establishing a Schiller Stiftung to propagate his works, and rabbis, including Samson Raphael Hirsch, eulogized him in their sermons. Jews stressed the poet's quest for a physical and spiritual freedom untrammeled by nationalist dogma, his belief in human equality influenced by Rousseau, and his idealism. They identified Schiller with Germany and Germany with Europe, seeing in Schiller's writings the bridge to European culture.

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Listing Classification
20th Century:    Checked
Germany:    Checked
First Editions:    Checked
Language:    German
Manuscript Type
Kind of Judaica