Friedrich Maximilian Von Klinger

Klinger, Friedrich Maximilian Von


Born Feb. 17, 1752, in Frankfurt-am-Main; died Feb. 25, 1831, in Dorpat (present-day Tartu). German writer, representative of the Sturm und Drang movement.

Klinger moved to Russia in 1780. His work centers on the rebel’s struggle against social injustice (for example, in the dramas Otto, 1775, and the Suffering Woman, 1775) and on men of unyielding will and strong passions (for example, in the dramas The Twins, 1776, and Confusion, or Sturm und Drang, 1776). In the prologue to the drama Damocles (1788), Klinger attributes the tragedy of his heroes to the disparity between the rebel’s aspirations and the unpreparedness of the people for struggle. Klinger’s sociophilosophical novels, such as Faust: His Life, Deeds, and Descent Into Hell (1791; Russian translation, 1913), are marked by keenly antifeudal satire, a more than skeptical attitude toward the new bourgeois order, and bright flashes of enlightened atheism.


Werke, vols. 1–2. Weimar, 1958.


Smolian, O. A. “Klinger v Rossii.” Uch. zap. Leningradskogo ped. in-ta, 1958, vol. 32, part 2, pages 31–77.
Hering, C. F. M. Klinger: Der Weltmann als Dichter, Berlin, 1966 (Bibliography, pages 377–81).