Jeremias Gotthelf

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Gotthelf, Jeremias


(pseudonym of Albrecht Bitzius). Born Oct. 4, 1797, in the canton of Bern; died there Oct. 22, 1854. Swiss author who wrote in German.

Gotthelf was the son of a pastor and a pastor himself. He acquired fame through his first novel, The Peasants’ Mirror, or the Life Story of Jeremias Gotthelf (1836). His novel The Joys and Sorrows of a Schoolmaster (vols. 1–2, 1838–39) deals with the pressing problems of mass education. In the novels Uli the Farm Servant (1841) and Uli the Tenant Farmer (1849) and the short stories Swiss Pictures and Legends (1842—46) and The Wanderings of Apprentice Jakob Through Switzerland (1846–47), Gotthelf describes the wretched conditions of the peasantry and artisans. However, the descriptions of the Utopian ideal of a well-to-do peasant community in Cheese-making in Weifreit (1850) and the idealization of the Swiss past in Black Spider (1842) and Elsie, the Strange Maiden (1843) are also characteristic of Gotthelf.


Sämlliche Werke, vols. 1–24. Erlenbach-Zürich, 1911–32.


Literatura Shveitsarii Ocherki. Moscow, 1969.
Baumgartner, P. Jeremias Gotthelfs Zeitgeist und Bernergeist.Bern [1945].
Muschg, W. Jeremias Gotthelf: Eine Einf ü hrung in seine Werke (2nded.). Bern-Munich, 1960.
Muschg, W. Gotthelf. . . Munich [1967].


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in classic literature ?
They have much the same quality of simple and sincerely moralized realism that I found afterwards in the work of the early Swiss realist, Jeremias Gotthelf, and very likely it was this that captivated my judgment.
Switzerland; the country of Albert Einstein, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Jeremias Gotthelf, Max Frisch, Roger Federer, orphan girl Heidi, cosmopolitan Geneva, Lausanne cathedrals, Valais wines, Red Cross, World Economic Forum, International Olympic Committee, dozens of Nobel laureates, and mountain high life; should be more mature and transparent, Zed pointed out.
Then he considers arachnids, invertebrates, and lepidoptera in such works as Jeremias Gotthelf's 1842 Die schwarze Spinne and tragedy and Zarathustra in Nietzsche; avian and serpentine in Richard Wagner's Lohengrin (1845-48), the Leda myth in Goethe's Faust II (1832), and other works; myriad arboreal, mammalian, feline, and lupine transformations such as Herbert Eulenberg's 1913 Katinka, die Fliege and of course Hermann Hesse's 1927 Der Steppenwolf among others; melusinas, nymphs, water sprites, and undinas in Hans Christian Anderson's Den lille havfrue (1837), Thomas Mann's mermaids, and others; and Christoph Ransmayr's 1988 Die Letzte Welt.