Authors: Paul Heyse

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

German short-story writer, novelist, and playwright

Author Works

Short Fiction:

Der Jungbrunnen, 1850

Hermen, 1854

Novellen, 1855

Four Phases of Love, 1857

Neue Novellen, 1858

Vier neue Novellen, 1859

Neue Novellen, 1862

Meraner Novellen, 1864

Fünf neue Novellen, 1866

Moralische Novellen, 1869

The Dead Lake, and Other Tales, 1870

Ein neues Novellenbuch, 1871

Neue Novellen, 1875

Das Ding an sich, und andere Novellen, 1879

Frau von F., und römische Novellen, 1881

Novellen, 1882

Troubadour-Novellen, 1882

Unvergessbare Worte, und andere Novellen, 1883

Himmliche und irdische Liebe, 1886

Villa Falconieri, und andere Novellen, 1887

Novellen: Auswahl fürs Haus, 1890

Weinachtsgeschichten, 1891

Aus den Vorbergen, 1893

In der Geisterstunde, und andere Spukgeschichten, 1894

Melusine, und andere Novellen, 1895

Das Räthsel des Lebens, und andere Charakterbilder, 1897

Der Sohn seines Vaters, und andere Novellen, 1898

Novellen vom Gardasee, 1901

Victoria Regia, und andere Novellen, 1906

Menschen und Schicksale: Charakterbilder, 1908

Helldunkles Leben, 1909

Letzte Novellen, 1914

Long Fiction:

Die Blinden, 1855 (novella; Blind, 1867)

L’Arrabbiata, 1855 (novella; English translation, 1857)

Marion, 1855 (novella; English translation, 1857)

Die Braut von Cypern, 1856 (novella)

Das Mädchen von Treppi, 1858 (novella; The Maiden of Treppi, 1874)

Andrea Delfin, 1859 (novella; English translation, 1864)

Anfang und Ende, 1859 (novella; Beginning and End, 1870) Die Stickerin von Treviso, 1868 (novella; The Embroideress of Treviso, 1874)

Der verlorene Sohn, 1869 (novella; The Lost Son, 1874)

Kinder der Welt, 1873 (Children of the World, 1883)

Im Paradiese, 1875 (In Paradise, 1878)

Der Roman der Stiftsdame, 1887 (The Romance of the Canoness, 1887)

Merlin, 1892

Marienkind, 1892

Über allen Gipfeln, 1895

Abenteuer eines Blaustrumpfchens, 1896 (novella; Adventures of a Little Blue-Stocking, 1896)

Der Schutzengel, 1900 (novella)

Crone Stäudlin, 1905

Gegen den Strom, 1907

Die Geburt der Venus, 1909

“Das Ewigmenschliche: Erinnerungen aus einem Alltagsleben von ***,” “Ein Familienhaus,” 1910 (2 novellas)


Francesca da Rimini, pb. 1850

Meleager, pb. 1854

Die Saberinnen, pb. 1859

Ludwig der Baier, pb. 1862

Elisabeth Charlotte, pb. 1864

Dramatische Dichtungen, pb. 1864–1905

Hadrian, pb. 1865

Maria Maroni, pb. 1865

Kolberg, pb. 1865

Hans Lange, pb. 1866 (English translation, 1885)

Die Göttin der Vernunft, pb. 1870

Ehre um Ehre, pb. 1875

Elfride, pb. 1877

Graf von Köningsmark, pb. 1877

Die Weiber von Schorndorf, pb. 1880

Alkibiades, pb. 1883

Prinzessin Sascha, pb. 1888

Weltuntergang, pb. 1889

Plays, pb. 1889

Jüngfer Justine, pb. 1893

Maria von Magdala, pb. 1899 (Mary of Magdala, 1900)

Der Heilige, pb. 1902 (The Saint, 1902)

Ein Canadier, pb. 1905


Die Brüder, 1852

Gesammelte Novellen in Versen, 1864

Gedichte, 1872

Spruchbüchlein, 1885

Gedichte, 1885, enlarged 1889

Neue Gedichte und Jugendlieder, 1897

Ein Wintertagebuch, 1903

Ausgewählte Gedichte, 1919


Jugenderinnerungen und Bekenntnisse, 1900

Ein Wintertagebuch (Gardona 1901–1902), 1903

Der Briefwechsel von Jakob Burckhardt und Paul Heyse, 1916

Briefwechsel zwischen Paul Heyse und Theodor Storm, 1917–1918

Paul Heyse und Gottfried Keller im Briefwechsel, 1919

Der Briefwechsel von Emanuel Geibel und Paul Heyse, 1922

Hochzeit auf Capri, 1929

Der Briefwechsel von Theodor Fontane und Paul Heyse, 1850–1897, 1929

Briefwechsel zwischen Joseph Victor von Scheffel und Paul Heyse, 1932

Das Lebenund Weltanschauung der Freifrau Marie von Ebner-Eschenbach mit dem Briefwechsel Heyse und Ebner-Eschenbach, 1935

Theodor Storm und Paul Heyse: Briefwechsel, 1969–1973

Der Briefwechsel zwischen Theodor Fontane und Paul Heyse, 1972

“Du hast alles was mir felt …”: Gottfried Keller im Briefwechsel mit Paul Heyse, 1990

Ein Gefühl der Verwantschaft: Paul Heyses Briefwechsel mit Eduard Mörike, 1997


Spanisches Liederbuch, 1852 (with Emanuel Geibel)

Italienisches Liederbuch, 1860

Antonius und Kleopatra, 1867 (of William Shakespeare’s play)

Timon von Athen, 1868 (of Shakespeare’s play)

Gedichte, 1875 (of Giuseppe Guisti’s poetry)

Werke, 1878 (of Giacomo Leopardi’s poetry)

Versen aus Italien, 1880

Italienische Dichter seit der Mitte des 18, Fahrhunderts: Übersetzungen und Studien, 1905

Edited Texts:

Romanische inedita auf Italiänische Bibliotheken gesammelt, 1856

Antologia dei moderni poeti italiani, 1869

Deutscher Novellenschatz, 1871–1876 (24 volumes; with Hermann Kurz)

Novellenschatz des Auslands, 1872–1875 (14 volumes; with Kurz)

Gesammelte Werke: Mit einer Biographie des Dichters, 1874 (10 volumes; by Kurz)

Neuer deutschen Novellenschatz, 1884–1887 (24 volumes; with Ludwig Laistner)


Novellen und Terzinen, 1867

Gesammelte Werke, 1872–1914 (38 volumes)

Romane und Novellen, 1902–1912 (42 volumes)


Paul Johann Ludwig von Heyse (HI-zuh), the first German to win the Nobel Prize in Literature, was born in Berlin on March 15, 1830. His father, Karl Wilhelm Heyse, was an eminent professor of philology at the University of Berlin. His mother, Julie (Saaling) Heyse, came from a prominent Jewish family.{$I[A]Heyse, Paul}{$I[geo]GERMANY;Heyse, Paul}{$I[tim]1830;Heyse, Paul}

Paul Heyse

(© The Nobel Foundation)

Heyse attended Berlin’s Friedrich Wilhelm Gymnasium and then studied classical languages and romance languages at the Universities of Berlin and Bonn. After he received a doctorate from the University of Berlin in 1852, he left on a scholarship for a year’s study in Italy, where he immersed himself in Italian art and literature.

On his return to Germany, Heyse settled in Munich, which became his home. There, the friendly influence of the poet Emmanuel Geibel brought him to the attention of Maximilian II, the king of Bavaria, who awarded Heyse a titular professorship at the University of Munich in 1854. This gave him freedom to devote himself entirely to writing, which he did. Although he had published his first novella, Der Jungbrunnen, in 1850, when he was twenty years old, beginning in 1854 his output–fiction, drama, poetry, prose, translations–became a flood. He was also an active critic. Together with Geibel, he founded Krokodil, a literary society devoted to combating naturalism and its effects.

In 1854 Heyse married Margarete Kugler, the daughter of an art historian, and lived happily with her until her death in 1862. Two years later he married Anna Schubart, with whom he spent the rest of a tranquil domestic life in their villa on the Luisenstrasse in Munich or in Villa Iolanda in Gardona, Italy.

Heyse had a great capacity for friendship, which is evident in his voluminous correspondence with such notables as the historian Jakob Burckhardt and the writers Theodor Storm, Gottfried Keller, Theodor Fontane, and Eduard Moerike.

In 1910, when Heyse was eighty years old, he was ennobled by King Ludwig II of Bavaria, the successor to Maximilian II. After that, he was proud and happy to style himself Paul von Heyse. The same year, Heyse’s contributions to literature achieved international recognition when he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature.

Heyse’s literary production slowed when he reached his eighties, but he continued writing. The last work published during his lifetime is his Letzte Novellen (last stories), dated 1914. He died of pneumonia in Munich on April 2 of the same year.

Between 1850 and 1905, Heyse wrote more than fifty plays, including tragedies, comedies, and Schauspiele. These were mostly unsuccessful, with the exception of Mary of Magdela, which achieved both fame and notoriety, having been censored in Berlin. Of his eight novels, his first, Children of the World was probably the most popular. His poetry, both tender love lyrics as well as lively verse, had many admirers. Selections from his Spanisches Liederbuch and Italienisches Liederbuch, as well as some of his other poems, were set to music by such composers as Hugo Wolf, Arnold Schoenberg, and Max Bruch. His fine translations of the works of Guiseppe Guisti, Giacomo Leopardi, and other poets and the plays of several dramatists brought Italian literature to many German readers. However, Heyse is best known for his novellas, of which he wrote more than one hundred. The most notable of these are L’Arrabbiata and Andrea Delfin. All of them are unified by a single controlling image according to his “falcon theory,” which he derived from the practice of Italian novelist Giovanni Boccaccio in the story of Federigo degli Alberighi and his falcon in the Decameron (1353).

Heyse has often been labeled a realist, but he is better called a poetic realist. He was a passionate antinaturalist who excluded ugliness and exaggeration from his work and who objected to ugliness and exaggeration in the work of others. All of his writings are carefully wrought and are characterized by delicacy, psychological depth, and unwavering idealism.

BibliographyBrandes, Georg M. C. “Paul Heyse.” In Creative Spirits of the Nineteenth Century. New York: Thomas Y. Crowell, 1923. An enthusiastic account of Heyse’s literary career up to 1875.Martin, Werner. Paul Heyse: Eine Bibliographie seiner Werke. New York: G. Olms, 1978. Lists all of Heyse’s writings and provides bibliographical information about them.Silz, Walter. Realism and Reality: Studies in the German Novelle of Poetic Realism. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1954. Solid discussion of Heyse’s role in the development of the German Novelle of poetic realism.Weing, Siegfried. The German Novella: Two Centuries of Criticism. Columbia, S.C.: Camden House, 1994. A useful account of the theory of the novella from early German novelistic narratives to 1980. Heyse is treated in the section on poetic realism. Includes bibliographical references.
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