Unpolitische Lieder.

Hamburg, Hoffmann and Campe, 1840–1.

Two works (the first in two parts) bound in two vols, 8vo, pp. xii, 204; [2], x, 202; 30; some browning and light foxing; contemporary diced cloth, spines lettered gilt, a little sunned.


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First edition of each work. Hoffmann (1784–1874), self-ennobled ‘von Fallersleben’, was first librarian (1823) and then professor of German language and literature (1830) at the University of Breslau, before his dismissal in 1842 due to the politically sensitive content of the supposedly Unpolitischen Lieder, a collection of poems highlighting rottenness in contemporary German state and society. A second edition of vol. I, replacing 10 earlier poems with 10 new ones, appeared at the same time as vol. II.

Perhaps Hoffmann’s best known poem is Lied der Deutschen (sometimes referred to by its opening line, ‘Deutschland, Deutschland über alles’), the final verse of which still serves as Germany’s national anthem, with its tune taken from Haydn’s Kaiserquartett. Written at the same time as the present work, it was first printed separately, with the music, in 1841, and was then included in Hoffmann’s Deutsche Lieder aus der Schweiz (Zurich & Winterthur, 1842).

Goedeke XIII, 363,35 –.

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