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Poets

Friedrich von Matthison

(1761- 1831)

Friedrich von Matthisson was a German poet, an early member of the German Romantic movement. His best known poem is probably Adelaide, which was set to music by Beethoven.

He was born at Hohendodeleben near Magdeburg, the son of the village pastor, on the 23rd of January 1761. After studying theology and philology at the university of Halle, he was appointed in 1781 master at the classical school Philanthropinum in Dessau. This once famous seminary was, however, then rapidly decaying in public favor, and in 1784 Matthisson was glad to accept a travelling tutorship. He lived for two years with the Swiss author Bonstetten at Nyon on Lake Geneva.

In 1794 he was appointed reader and traveling companion to Princess Louisa of Anhalt-Dessau (wife of Leopold III, Duke of Anhalt-Dessau). They visited Switzerland, Tyrol, and Italy. For a time, they were joined in their travels by Danish author and salonist Friederike Brun. After Princess Louisa's death in 1811, he entered the service of the king of Württemberg, was ennobled, created counselor of legation, appointed intendant of the court theatre and chief librarian of the royal library at Stuttgart. He resided for a time in Italy. In 1828 he retired and settled at Wörlitz near Dessau, where he died on the 12th of March 1831.

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Related Songs

Composed Title Composer
Adelaide (Op. 46) Ludwig van Beethoven
Andenken Hugo Wolf
Adelaide (D95) Franz Schubert
Andenken (D99) Franz Schubert
An Laura, als sie Klopstocks Auferstehungslied sang (D115) Franz Schubert
Klage (D415) Franz Schubert
Naturgenuss (D188) Franz Schubert
Lebenslied (D508) Franz Schubert
Lied aus der Ferne (D107) Franz Schubert
Lied der Liebe (D109) Franz Schubert
Vollendung (D579a) Franz Schubert
Der Abend (D108) Franz Schubert
Der Geistertanz (D116) Franz Schubert
Romance (Berwald) Franz Berwald
Romanze (D114) Franz Schubert
Die Schatten (D50) Franz Schubert
Andenken (WoO 136) Ludwig van Beethoven
Am Seegestad’, in lauen Vollmondnächten Felix Mendelssohn