Nicodemus Frischlin: Band IV,1: Deutsche Dichtungen und Entwürfe

Edited by Fabian Mauch and Claus Zittel.
Umschlagfoto – nicht vorhanden
256 p.
ISBN 978-3-7728-2804-1
March 2025
Single price:
ca. € 248.–

Frischlin’s German poetry occupies a special position in his oeuvre. Frischlin wrote the majority of his texts in Latin, the humanist language of education of his time; he regarded German, on the other hand, as a lowly language of the people and saw its use primarily as a concession to a supposedly uneducated audience. For Frischlin, this included not only the common people, but also the majority of the nobility. Against this background, it is no coincidence that ›Fraw Wendelgard‹ (1580), Frischlin’s only German-language drama published during his lifetime and also one of his best-known works in which he took up historical material, was aimed at a courtly audience. In addition to ›Wendelgard‹, Frischlin also wrote drafts for three biblical comedies (›Hochzeit zu Kana‹, ›Joseph‹, ›Ruth‹), which, based on earlier plans, were written during his imprisonment at Hohenurach Castle (1590), but remained unfinished and only appeared in print several hundred years later.

Frischlin’s last vernacular work, ›Vom Leben/ Raisen/ Wanderschafften vnd zustaͤnd Des Grossen S. Christoffels‹ (1591), was not published until after his death and although his sole authorship of the text is not entirely certain, it is generally regarded as Frischlin’s work. As a rhymed satire on the ills of the world, ›S. Christoffel‹ is still an entertaining and amusing read today. In addition to the poetic writings in the narrower sense, the volume also contains the ›Kurtze Abfertigunge‹ (1589), a polemic directed against the Melanchthon supporter Sebastian Gobler, in which Frischlin took sides with his friend, the theologian Polykarp Leyser. In striking contrast to Frischlin’s own disdain for his vernacular productions, it was precisely these that contributed significantly to his rediscovery in the 19th century and gave rise to a renewed interest in his work.

With the critical edition of the ›German Poems and Drafts‹ in Volume IV,1 of the ›Complete Works‹, these are thus extended by a body of writings that is of central importance both for the understanding of Frischlin’s oeuvre as a whole and its reception.

© frommann-holzboog Verlag e.K. 2024