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Giograhfie von Friedrich von Schiller

Friedrich von Schiller (1759-1805)

Leading German 18th-century dramatist, poet, and literary theorist. Schiller's mature plays examine the inward freedom of the soul; his first play The Robbers (1781) was a landmark in German theatrical history and spoke of the ideas of liberty. According to Schiller, a play is not a means to enjoyment; it is the very thing enjoyed. Aesthetic education is necessary, he argued, not only for the proper balance of the individual soul, but for the harmonious development of society.

Leis auf den Zehen kommt's geschlichen
Die Stille liebt es und die Nacht;
Mit schnellen Füssen ist's entwichen,
Wo des Verräters Auge wacht.
(from 'Das Geheimnis')
Friedrich Schiller was born in Marbach, Württemberg, of Lutheran parents. His father, Johannes Kaspar Schiller, was an officer and surgeon. Elisabeth Dorothea, Schiller's mother, was a pious, serious-minded woman. The Duke Karl Eugen (Charles II), who had control over his subjects' children, ordered Schiller attend the military academy instead of studying theology. In 1773 he left home and spent miserable years under strict discipline, which only strengthened his longing for freedom. The Duke himself controlled the school, and had the pupils to compose flattering speeches to him. "I see before me the father of my parents," wrote also Schiller, "whose gifts I cannot recompense. I see him, and he takes my breath away." Schiller studied first law and entered then the newly created medical department. In 1780 he was dismissed from the academy after writing a controversial essay on religion, On Relation Between Man's Animal and Spiritual Nature. At the age of 21 he was forced to join his father's regiment.

Despite his father's efforts, Schiller continued to write. His first drama, DIE RÄUBER, was published in 1781, and performed next year in Mannheim. The play about a noble outlaw, Karl Moor, who has rejected his the values of his father, gained with its revolutionary app...

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