Wilhelm Hauff

Wilhelm Hauff (29 November 1802 – 18 November 1827) was a Württembergian poet and novelist.

Wilhelm Hauff
Behringer - Wilhelm Hauff 1826
Born29 November 1802
Stuttgart, Württemberg
Died18 November 1827 (aged 24)
OccupationPoet, novelist
GenrePoetry, fiction

Early life

Hauff was born in Stuttgart, the son of August Friedrich Hauff, a secretary in the Württemberg ministry of foreign affairs, and Hedwig Wilhelmine Elsaesser Hauff. He was the second of four children.

Young Hauff lost his father when he was seven years old, and his early education was practically self-gained in the library of his maternal grandfather at Tübingen, where his mother had moved after the death of her husband. In 1818 he was sent to the Klosterschule at Blaubeuren, and in 1820 began to study at the University of Tübingen. In four years he completed his philosophical and theological studies at the Tübinger Stift.


On leaving the university, Hauff became tutor to the children of the Württemberg minister of war, General Baron Ernst Eugen von Hugel (1774–1849), and for them wrote his Märchen (fairy tales), which he published in his Märchen almanach auf das Jahr 1826 (Fairytale Almanac of 1826). Some of these stories are very popular in German-speaking countries to this day, such as Der kleine Muck (The Story of Little Muck), Kalif Storch (Caliph Stork) and Die Geschichte von dem Gespensterschiff (The Tale of the Ghost Ship)—all set in the Orient; as well as Der Zwerg Nase (Little Longnose), Das kalte Herz (The Cold Heart or The Marble Heart) and Das Wirtshaus im Spessart (The Spessart Inn), set in Germany.

While there, he also wrote the first part of the Mitteilungen aus den Memoiren des Satan (1826; Memoirs of Beelzebub) and Der Mann im Mond (1825; The Man in the Moon). The latter, a parody of the sentimental and sensual novels of Heinrich Clauren (the pseudonym of Carl Gottlieb Samuel Heun, 1771–1854), became in the course of composition, a close imitation of that author's style and was actually published under his name. As a result, Clauren brought and won an action for damages against Hauff, whereupon Hauff followed up the attack in his witty and sarcastic Kontroverspredigt über H. Clauren und den Mann im Mond (1826) and attained his original object: the moral annihilation of the mawkish and unhealthy literature with which Clauren was flooding the country.

Wilhelm hauff family grave in stuttgart
Wilhelm Hauff's grave stone in Stuttgart, Germany.

Meanwhile, inspired by Sir Walter Scott's novels, Hauff wrote the historical romance Lichtenstein: Romantische Sage aus der wuerttembergischen Geschichte (1826; Lichtenstein: Romantic Saga from the History of Württemberg), which became hugely popular in Germany and especially in Swabia, treating as it did the most interesting period in the history of that country, the reign of Duke Ulrich (1487–1550). This novel was the inspiration for Duke Ulrich's heir, Duke Wilhelm of Urach, to rebuild the castle, which had fallen into disrepair, in accordance with Hauff's description.

While on a journey to France, the Netherlands, and northern Germany he wrote the second part of the Memoiren des Satan and some short novels, among them the charming Die Bettlerin vom Pont des Arts (1826; The True Lover's Fortune; or, the Beggar of the Pont des Arts) and his masterpiece, the novella Phantasien im Bremer Ratskeller (1827; The Wine-Ghosts of Bremen). He also published some short poems, which have passed into Volkslieder, among them "Morgenrot, Morgenrot, leuchtest mir zum frühen Tod?" ("Dawn's light, you are lighting my way to early death") and "Steh ich in finstrer Mitternacht" ("I stand in the darkest midnight"). The novella Jud Süß was published in 1827.

In January 1827, Hauff undertook the editorship of the Stuttgart Morgenblatt and in the following month married his cousin Luise Hauff, but his happiness was prematurely cut short by his death from (typhoid[1]) fever on 18 November 1827.


His Sämtliche Werke (Collected works), with a biography, edited by Gustav Schwab were published in 3 volumes 1830–1834, and 5 volumes (18th ed.) in 1882. They were also published by Felix Bobertag 1891–1897. A selection from his works was published by M. Mendheim (3 vols, 1891).

Wilhelm-Hauff Lichtenstein
Memorial near Lichtenstein


Considering his brief life, Hauff was an extraordinarily prolific writer. The freshness and originality of his talent, his inventiveness, and his genial humour have won him a high place among the southern German prose writers of the early nineteenth century.

See also

  • Little Longnose, a 2003 Russian animated feature based on one of his stories.
  • Geschichte vom kleinen Muck, a 1953 film.
  • Das kalte Herz, (The Heart of Stone), feature film, 1950, East Germany, director Paul Verhoeven.
  • Сказка, рассказанная ночью, Soviet feature film based on the stories The Marble Heart and The Spessart Inn, USSR, 1981.
  • Халиф - аист, Soviet animation, based on one of the stories, 1981.

Further reading

  •  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainChisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Hauff, Wilhelm" . Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.. This work in turn cites:
    • Julius Klaiber, Wilhelm Hauff, ein Lebensbild (1881)
    • Max Mendheim, Hauffs Leben und Werke (1894)
    • Hans Hofmann, W. Hauff (1902)


  1. ^ Horst R. Thieme, Mathematics in Population Biology (2003)

External links

1826 in poetry

Nationality words link to articles with information on the nation's poetry or literature (for instance, Irish or France).

1827 in literature

This article presents lists of the literary events and publications in 1827.

Die Geschichte vom kleinen Muck

Die Geschichte vom Kleinen Muck (English: The Story of Little Muck) is a 1953 feature film directed by Wolfgang Staudte, adapted from the 19th century fairy tale, Little Muck, written by Wilhelm Hauff.

Dwarf Nose

Dwarf Nose is a fairy tale by Wilhelm Hauff, which was published in a collection of fairytales in 1826.

Georg Mühlberg

Georg Mühlberg (5 February 1863 – 1 January 1925) was a German painter, draftsman and illustrator.

Mühlberg illustrated especially children's literature, including fables (Hey Paul, 100 Fables for Children), fairy tales and magazines. Several images depict scenes of student life. He produced a popular postcard series on fairy tales such as The Wishing-Table and The Seven Swabians, the historical novel by Wilhelm Hauff The Piper of Hardt, and novels by E. Marlitt including The Owl House, The secret of the old maid, Gold Else, and Countess Gisela.

Heart of Stone (1924 film)

Heart of Stone (German: Das kalte Herz) is a 1924 German silent film directed by Fred Sauer and starring Fritz Schulz, Grete Reinwald and Frida Richard. The film is based on a fairy tale by Wilhelm Hauff.

The film's sets were designed by the art director Siegfried Wroblewsky.

Heart of Stone (1950 film)

Heart of Stone (German: Das kalte Herz) is an East German fantasy film directed by Paul Verhoeven. The first East German film made in Agfacolor, it was released in 1950. The film is based on the fairy tale of the same name originally published by Wilhelm Hauff in 1826.

Heart of Stone (German fairy tale)

Heart of Stone (German: Das kalte Herz, literally "The Cold Heart") is a fairy tale written by Wilhelm Hauff. It was published in 1827 in a collection of fairy tales that take place within the narrative of The Spessart Inn. It formed the basis for the East German film Heart of Stone, released in 1950.

Jud Süß

Jud Süß or Jew Süss may refer to:

Joseph Süß Oppenheimer (1698–1738), German-Jewish financier

Jud Süß (Hauff novel), an 1827 novella by Wilhelm Hauff

Jud Süß (Feuchtwanger novel), a 1925 novel by Lion Feuchtwanger

Jew Süss (1934 film), a British film based on Lion Feuchtwanger's 1925 novel, starring Conrad Veidt

Jud Süß (1940 film), a German film by Veit Harlan

Jew Suss: Rise and Fall, a 2010 German film that depicts events behind 1940 production

Jud Süß (Kornfeld play), a 1930 play Paul Kornfeld

Jud Süß (Hauff novel)

Jud Süß is a novella by Wilhelm Hauff based on the historical Jewish banker and financial planner Joseph Süß Oppenheimer. In Hauff's novella Joseph Süß Oppenheimer believes he is a Jew. His unfair business practices result in the betrayal of an innocent girl. Consequently, he is arrested and sentenced to be hanged. While he waits to be executed, he discovers that he is not Jewish, but he prefers to face his sentence rather than turning his back on the community he grew up in.

Kosmos (publisher)

Franckh-Kosmos Verlags-GmbH & Co. is a media publishing house based in Stuttgart, Germany, founded in 1822 by Johann Friedrich Franckh. In the nineteenth century the company published the fairy tales of Wilhelm Hauff as well as works by Wilhelm Waiblinger and Eduard Mörike.

The "Friends of Nature Club" (Gesellschaft der Naturfreunde) was set up in 1903 in response to booming public interest in science and technology, and by 1912 100,000 members were receiving its monthly magazine "Cosmos" (Kosmos). The company moved into publishing books on popular science topics under the brands Franckh’sche Verlagshandlung and KOSMOS, including successful non-fiction guidebooks by Hanns Günther and Heinz Richter. Children's fiction and Kosmos-branded science experimentation kits were introduced in the 1920s.

Kosmos's current output includes non-fiction, children's books, science kits and German-style board games. Many of their games are translated into English and published by Thames & Kosmos. Their line of experiment kits and science kits is distributed in North America and the United Kingdom by Thames & Kosmos.

Le vaisseau fantôme

Le vaisseau fantôme ("The Phantom Ship") is an opera in two acts and three tableaux by Pierre-Louis Dietsch to a French libretto by Paul Foucher and Bénédict-Henry Révoil, based on Captain Marryat's novel The Phantom Ship, Sir Walter Scott's The Pirate, as well as tales by Heinrich Heine, James Fenimore Cooper, and Wilhelm Hauff. It was premiered on 9 November 1842 by the Paris Opera at the Salle Le Peletier and received 12 performances.

Lichtenstein (novel)

Lichtenstein is a historical novel by Wilhelm Hauff, first published in 1826, the year before his early death. Set in and around Württemberg, it is considered his greatest literary success next to his fairy-tales, and, together with the work of the almost forgotten Benedikte Naubert, represents the beginning of historical novel-writing in Germany.Hauff follows Sir Walter Scott (and Naubert) by allowing an invented figure in a real family, Georg Sturmfeder, to witness the events during the struggle of Ulrich von Württemberg against the Swabian League under Georg, Truchsess von Waldburg-Zeil, who plays the part of foil to the positively depicted Georg von Frundsberg. Hauff idealises Ulrich as a wronged man, who, in his moment of need, is restored to his rights through the efforts of his people, symbolised by the character of the Piper of Hardt. The historical Ulrich is remembered largely for his exorbitant taxes on meat, wine and fruit, which provoked the Armer Konrad peasant uprising of 1514, quelled only with the help of his enemy the Steward of Waldburg-Zeil.Lichtenstein was a romantic and patriotic German's tribute to the work of Sir Walter Scott. No foreign author was more popular than Scott in the Germany of the early 19th century. His novels, translated in full, were so generally read, that it was said that the soil of old Scotland was more familiar to Germans than their native land. Yet the hills of Scotland, Hauff said, were not of a richer green than the German Harz, the waves of the Tweed were no bluer than those of the Danube, Scotch men were no braver, Scotch women no lovelier than the old Swabians and Saxons. Lichtenstein, modelled after the Waverley Novels, was a direct protest against the novel with a foreign historical background, and was an attempt to recreate the romance of a bit of Swabian history; as Scott had done for the country of Ivanhoe and Waverley.The great success of the book prompted the rebuilding of Lichtenstein Castle in 1840–1842. The 1846 opera of the same name by Peter Josef von Lindpaintner is based on this novel.

Lichtenstein Castle (Württemberg)

Lichtenstein Castle (Schloss Lichtenstein) is a privately owned tourist attraction built in Gothic Revival style and located in the Swabian Jura of southern Germany. It was designed by Carl Alexander Heideloff and has been described as the "fairy tale castle of Württemberg." It overlooks the Echaz valley near Honau, Reutlingen in the state of Baden-Württemberg. The modern castle was inspired by the novel Lichtenstein (1826) by Wilhelm Hauff and was built in 1840–1842. The ruins of the medieval castle that inspired the novel are a few hundred meters away. The name Lichtenstein translates as "shining stone."


The Lindach is a small river in the central foothills of the Swabian Alb, which rises below the Reussenstein Castle in the Neidlingen valley and flows into the Lauter in Kirchheim unter Teck. It runs through the towns of Neidlingen, Weilheim an der Teck and the Jesingen district of Kirchheim unter Teck.

The source chambers are located at the top of the ridge. The karst water flows mainly from the eastern bay and after a few metres above the tuff overhang of the Neidlingen waterfall. A legend recorded by Wilhelm Hauff maintains that the source was formed when a giant tried to leap from one side of the valley to the other and slipped. The Lindach then gushed from the hole he made in the rock.

The upper Lindach valley (also known as Neidlinger valley) is a popular tourist area. The ruins of Reussenstein Castle are well-known, as is the waterfall near the source of the Lindach. In the vicinity of the river, we find the Randecker Maar crater and the Limburg mountain. A bit further afield, we find the source of the Fils river, the Teck castle and Lenningen valley.

The landscape of the lower Lindach valley is less attractive, but the old town of Kirchheim is picturesque, especially the nearby town of Holzmaden with its well-known Primeval World Museum Hauff, which contains one of the most important collections of fossils in southern Germany.

Little Longnose

Little Longnose (Russian: Ка́рлик Нос, Karlik Nos) is a Russian traditionally animated feature film directed by Ilya Maximov, made by Melnitsa Animation Studio. It opened in Russia on March 20, 2003, and had 375,000 admissions during its theatrical run. A computer game based on the film was produced by Melnitsa, K-D Labs, and 1C.

Little Muck (German fairy tale)

The story of Little Muck is a fairy tale written by Wilhelm Hauff. It was published in 1826 in a collection of fairy tales and tells the story of an outsider called Little Muck.

The Spessart Inn

The Spessart Inn (German: Das Wirtshaus im Spessart) is a 1958 West German musical comedy film directed by Kurt Hoffmann. It starred Liselotte Pulver and Carlos Thompson.

The Spessart Inn (1923 film)

The Spessart Inn (German:Das Wirtshaus im Spessart) is a 1923 German silent film directed by Adolf Wenter. In 1958 it was remade as a musical film of the same title.

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