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Friedrich Leopold Graf zu Stolberg

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Friedrich Leopold Graf zu Stolberg (November 7, 1750 - December 5, 1819), was a German poet.

The younger son of Count Christian Stolberg, he was born at Bramstedt in Holstein. He studied in Göttingen and was a prominent member of the famous Hain or Dichterbund. After leaving the university he made a journey to Switzerland with his brother Christian, in company with Goethe. In 1777 he was appointed envoy of the prince bishop of Lübeck at the court of Copenhagen, but often stayed at Eutin, to spend time with his college friend and member of the Dichterbund, Johann Heinrich Voss.

In 1782 Stolberg married Agnes von Witzleben, whom he celebrated in his poems. After her early death in 1788, he became Danish envoy at the court of Berlin, and contracted a second marriage with the countess Sophie von Redern in 1789. In 1791 he was appointed president of the Lübeck episcopal court at Eutin; he resigned this office in 1800, and retiring to Munster in Westphalia, where he and his whole family, apart from his eldest daughter, joined the Roman Catholic Church.

For this action, he was severely attacked by his former friend Voss (Wie ward Fritz Stolberg zum Unfreien? 1819). After living for a while (from 1812) in the neighbourhood of Bielefeld, he removed to his estate of Sondermuhlen near Osnabrück, where he remained till his death.

He wrote many odes, ballads, satires and dramas; among them the tragedy Timoleon (1784). He produced translations of the Iliad (1778), of Plato (1796-1797), Aeschylus (1802), and Ossian (1806); he published in 1815 a Leben Alfreds des Grossen, and a voluminous Geschichte der Religion Jesu Christi (17 vols., 1806-1818).

The Collected Works of Christian and Friedrich Leopold zu Stolberg were published in twenty volumes in 1820-1825; 2nd ed. 1827. Friedrich's correspondence with FH Jacobi will be found in Jacobi's Briefwechsel (18251827); that with Voss has been edited by O Hellinghaus (1891).

Selections from the poetry of the two brothers will be found in A Sauer's Der Göttinger Dichterbund, iii. (Kurschner's Deutsche Nationalliteratur, vol. 50, 1896). See also T Menge, Der Graf F. L. Stolberg and seine Zeitgenossen (2 vols., 1862); JH Hennes, Aus F. L. von Stolbergs Jugendjahren (1876); the same, Stolberg in den zwei letzten Jahrzehnten seines Lebens (1875); Johannes Janssen, F. L. Graf zu Stolberg (2 vols, 1877), 2nd ed. 1882; W Keiper, F. L. Stolbergs Jugendpoesie (1893).


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