Download Shelley's German Afterlives: 1814-2000 (Nineteenth-Century Major Lives and Letters) PDF

TitleShelley's German Afterlives: 1814-2000 (Nineteenth-Century Major Lives and Letters)
File Size664.8 KB
Total Pages254
Table of Contents
List of Tables
1 Introduction: Immaterial Angel or Material Poet?
	Why Germany?
	Why Shelley?
	Material or Immaterial? History and Theory
	Traces of Shelley’s Ups and Downs
	Chronological and Systematic Stages of Exploration
2 The Textual Condition
	English-Language Reprints: The Vicissitudes of the German Queen Mab
	German Shelley Editions: Some Figures
	Shelleyan Narratives I: Percy Bysshe Shelley
	Shelleyan Narratives II: Mary Shelley
	Four German Shelley Editions
	German Poetry Anthologies
	Shelley in German Anthologies
3 German Readers of Shelley
	The Romantic Reader: Young, Male, Vulnerable, and Alone
	The Poetry Market
	Shelley in Circles
	Radical Readers
	Institutionalized Poetry: Schools and Universities
	The Uses of Reading Shelley
4 The Lives of a Failed Martyr: Shelley and Biography
	Shelley’s Poetry, Shelley’s Personae
	English and German Biographies of Shelley
	Young Germany and the Failed Martyr
	Death, Funeral, Apotheosis
	The Angel: Ariel
5 Lyrical Shelley
	Musical Settings
	Popular Imitations: Geibel
	The George Circle
	Lyrical Shelley and Academia
6 Revolutionary Shelley
	Public Protest: Freiligrath and Herwegh
	Brecht’s Anachronistic Procession
	Protesters’ Lives: Ret Marut alias B. Traven
	Recollection in Tranquility: Hamm
7 Faustian, Mystical, Parricidal: Shelley’s Strong Selves
	Prometheus Unbound, Nietzsche, and Faust
	Shelley as a Mystical Poet: Yeats and Kassner
	The Cenci, Parricide, and Expressionism
Appendix 1 Anthologizing Shelley: A List of Anthologies by Date of Appearance
Appendix 2 German Shelley Editions
Document Text Contents
Page 1

Shelley’s German Afterlives

Susanne Schmid

Page 2

Shelley’s German Afterlives

mailto: [email protected]

Page 127

116 S h e l l e y ’s G e r m a n A f t e r l i v e s

quaint in the German version: “Des Himmels Lüfte süß bewegt” is
reminiscent of a famous poem by Eduard Mörike, “Er ist’s” (“It is
Him”), written in 1829.

Frühling läßt sein blaues Band
Wieder fl attern durch die Lüfte;
Süße, wohlbekannte Düfte
Streifen ahnungsvoll das Land.10

[Spring lets his blue ribbon
Once again fl utter through the air.
Sweet, familiar fragrancies
Are roaming through the land.]

In the English text not the air but the emotions are “sweet.” More-
over, the anonymous translator introduces a male God-the-father
fi gure: “nach dem Spruch des Herrn,” a deviation from Shelley’s
atheism (or pantheism), which would only accept a “law divine.”
Shelley’s abstract setting is turned into a pretty landscape, presided
over by a male God. The German poem follows a traditional notion
of natural and divine order not present in the English text because a
popular German blueprint for nature poetry has imposed its discur-
sive pattern on Shelley.

Another translation is by Strodtmann, published in his 1866
edition of Shelley’s poetry. Strodtmann, a former supporter of the
radical cause of 1848, took account of the poet’s lyrical and political
voice when he selected the poems. His translation of the fi rst stanza
of “Love’s Philosophy” runs:

Quelle eint sich mit dem Strome,
Daß der Strom ins Meer vertauche;
Wind und Wind am blauen Dome
Mischen sich mit sanftem Hauche.
Nichts auf weiter Welt ist einsam,
Jedes folgt und weiht sich hier
Einem Andern allgemeinsam -
Warum denn nicht wir?11

Strodtmann does not aim to continue the Eichendorff tradition,
and the sense of urgency conveyed in the anonymous translation in
Freudvoll und Leidvoll is missing. For example: Strodtmann translates
“mingle” as “einen” (“unite”). The “law divine” is not turned into a
personal God, Strodtmann does not even refer to any sort of divinity,

mailto: [email protected]

Page 128

L y r i c a l S h e l l e y 117

and the holiness of the union is conveyed through the verb “weiht”
(“consecrates”). Strodtmann’s version is far less quaint, less focused
on hierarchies. Such examples show how translations can subtly
change the discursive fi eld in which a poem is situated. It is a general
effect of anthologizing that poems are appropriated and decontextu-
alized, simply through the processes of selecting and ordering. Yet if
they are translated as well, they may be adapted to German discourses,
and may join in or depart from German literary traditions.

Another frequently anthologized popular short poem is “The Indian
Girl’s Song,” also known under the titles “Lines to an Indian Air” and
“The Indian Serenade,” which neatly fi ts into the fi n-de-siècle fashion
of languishing. Although the version “The Indian Girl’s Song” in
Fraistat and Reiman’s Norton Critical Edition (SPP 466–467), which
goes back to Shelley’s fair copy and makes the speaker a woman, is
much to be preferred over variants in older Shelley editions, I have
used an older version because in the nineteenth century, only those
variants were available which leave the gendering open to the reader or
even suggest that the poem has a male speaker. One of the many trans-
lations was produced by George and is part of his aesthetic program,
namely to present a movement of kindred spirits suitable to reawaken
European poetry.12 His Shelley is a precursor of Dante Gabriel Ros-
setti and Algernon Swinburne. This translation, probably written in
his school days and published in Die Fibel in 1901, exemplifi es the
contemporary cult of languishing, which counted George among its
devoted followers. It is one of his early texts and does not yet embody
the hermetic style of his later poems but describes a hermetic scenario:
two lovers in a vague oriental setting that is inaccessible to the ordi-
nary reader, entirely alone, concerned only with themselves:

I arise from dreams of thee
In the fi rst sweet sleep of night.
When the winds are breathing low,
And the stars are burning bright:
I arise from dreams of thee,
And a spirit in my feet
Hath led me—who knows how?
To thy chamber window, Sweet!

The wandering airs they faint
On the dark, the silent stream—
The Champak odours fail
Like sweet thoughts in a dream;
The nightingale’s complaint—

mailto: [email protected]

Page 253

242 I n d e x

“Mutability” (“We are as clouds”),
35, 38, 46

The Necessity of Atheism, 6, 37,
64, 163

“A New National Anthem,” 40
“Ode to Heaven,” 38, 42, 203n74
“Ode to Liberty,” 28, 38, 39
“Ode to the West Wind,” 15, 34, 35,

38, 39, 43, 47, 55, 56, 67, 75,
81, 84, 87, 92, 98, 111, 113,
120, 132, 133, 176, 190n15,
203n74, 213n3, 219n85

“An Ode Written October, 1819,”
35, 38, 39, 46, 57, 58, 59,

Oedipus Tyrannus, 37
“On a Faded Violet,” 44, 120,

“On Death,” 38
“On the Medusa of Leonardo da

Vinci,” 203n74
Original Poetry; By Victor and

Cazire, 37
“Ozymandias,” 35, 38, 39, 44, 46,

81, 176, 219n85, 227n29
“Passage of the Apennines,” 203n74
“The Past,” 41, 203n74
Posthumous Fragments of Margaret

Nicholson, 37, 202n57
Posthumous Poems, 24, 41
Prince Athanase, 222n33
“Prologue in Heaven,” 155, 196n7
Prometheus Unbound, 4, 7, 13, 19,

28, 30, 31, 32, 33, 35, 36, 37,
38, 39, 40, 42, 43, 50, 56, 64,
75, 76, 77, 87, 106, 107, 113,
119, 153–160, 162, 163, 165,
172, 174, 175, 186, 187, 188,
202n60, 219n85, 220n3

Queen Mab, 6, 7, 10, 13, 19,
21–29, 30, 35, 36, 37, 38, 41,
43, 45, 49, 51, 58, 59, 72,
75, 79, 80, 87, 98, 124, 135,
148, 149, 152, 154, 163, 175,
185, 186, 198n18, 198n21,
199n25, 200n36

“Remembrance,” 41, 203n74
The Revolt of Islam, 37, 155,

204n83, 222n33
Rosalind and Helen, 37, 38, 39,

“The Sensitive Plant,” 38, 84, 87,

93, 128, 129, 130
“Similes for Two Political Characters

of 1819,” 40, 203n74
“Song” (“Rarely, rarely”), 203n74
“Song” (also “A Widow Bird”), 35,

61, 109, 219n85
“Song for Tasso,” 203n74
“Song of Proserpine” (also “Hymn

to Proserpine”), 120
“Song to the Men of England”

(also “Men of England”), 34,
35, 40, 43, 46, 48, 59, 114,
133, 135, 136, 140, 142, 174,

“Sonnet from the Italian of
Dante,” 38

“Sonnet: Political Greatness,”

“Sonnet to Byron,” 49
“Stanzas, April 1814,” 38
“Stanzas, Written in Dejection, near

Naples,” 35, 41, 67, 75, 113,
121–124, 203n74, 221n29

“A Summer Evening Churchyard,”
38, 71

“The Sunset,” 41
“Time,” 203n74, 227n29
“That Time Is Dead Forever,” 44
“To–” (“As passion’s trance”),

“To–” (“I fear thy kisses”), 42,

“To–” (“Oh there are spirits of the

air”), 38
“To–” (“One word”), 203n74,

“To a Friend Released from

Prison,” 49
“To a Skylark,” 6, 35, 38, 39, 47,

55, 58, 75, 87, 93, 175

mailto: [email protected]

Page 254

I n d e x 243

“To Constantia, Singing,” 41
“To Death” (“Death! where is thy

victory?”), 49
“To Edward Williams,” 203n74
“To Emilia Viviani,” 203n74
“To Jane: The Invitation,” 41
“To Mary–,” 41, 44, 203n74
“To Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin,”

“To Night” (also “Invocation to

Night”), 35, 71, 75, 120,
176, 203n74

“To the Moon,” 10, 219n85
“To the Queen of my Heart,”

55, 56
“To the Republicans of North

America,” 50
“To William Shelley,” 41, 46,


“To Wordsworth,” 38
“To-morrow,” 203n74, 227n29
The Triumph of Life, 41
Victor and Cazire, 202n57
“A Vision of the Sea,” 38, 42
“The Wandering Jew’s Soliloquy,” 49
“The Waning Moon,” 110, 219n85
“What Men Gain Fairly,” 40
“When the Lamp is Shattered,” 35,

43, 46, 47, 219n85
“A Widow Bird” (also “Song”), 35,

61, 109, 219n85
The Witch of Atlas, 41
“The Woodman and the

Nightingale,” 203n74
“The World’s Wanderers,” 35,

55, 58
“Ye Hasten to the Grave,” 47
Zastrozzi, 4

mailto: [email protected]

Similer Documents