Johann Peter Hebel

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Hebel, Johann Peter


Born May 10, 1760, in Basel; died Sept. 22, 1826, in Schwetzingen, Baden. German writer.

Hebel graduated from the faculty of theology of the University of Erlangen in 1780. In the collection Alemannic Poems (1803) he depicted the hard life of peasants and soldiers and the idyllic aspects of everyday rural life. Between 1808 and 1815, Hebel published popular calendars, which contained the short stories and anecdotes that are collected in The Treasury of a Rhineland Family Friend.

Hebel reworked folktales and ordinary events from contemporary life to create the genre of the brief humorous story. This form was further developed by such writers as B. Brecht and E. Stritmatter. In Russia, V. A. Zhukovskii translated some of Hebel’s works, and L. N. Tolstoy took an interest in the writer.


Gesammelte Werke, vols. 1–2. Edited by E. Meckel. Berlin, 1958.
In Russian Translation:
In Nemetskie poety v biografiiakh i obraztsakh. Edited by N. V. Gerbel’. St. Petersburg, 1877.
References in periodicals archive ?
Yet Middleton traces a long genealogy for the form, from Apuleius and Attar, through Thomas Traherne, Pascal, and Johann Peter Hebel, to Nietzsche, Kafka, and Benjamin, Shuntaro Tanikawa, Slawomir Mrozek, and Rosmarie Waldrop.
But it is a real pleasure to watch this powerful new advocate skilfully pleading the strange case of Johann Peter Hebel.
Inspired by the Scots dialect poems of Robert Burns and the Swabian-Swiss writings of Johann Peter Hebel, Groth explored the potentials of his native Dithmarschen dialect as a vehicle of lyrical expression.