Hermann Kestner

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Hermann Kestner
Tomb at the Engesohde city cemetery in Hanover

Hermann August Kestner (born July 30, 1810 in Hanover ; † June 27, 1890 ibid) was a German collector of musical manuscripts and composer from the Kestner family and founded the Kestner Museum in Hanover.


The Kestner family belonged to the so-called pretty families in the 18th and 19th centuries . Hermann was born the son of the archivist and private banker Georg Kestner , the eldest son of Johann Christian Kestner and his wife Charlotte Buff , who became famous as Goethe's Lotte in The Sorrows of Young Werther . In 1829 he began his law studies at the University of Göttingen and continued his studies from 1831 at the University of Heidelberg . He was a member of the Corps Hannovera (1830) and Guestphalia Heidelberg (1831).

As a composer, Kestner created songs from the Goethe era, among other things .

As the administrator of the estate, he made the rich collection of antiques from his uncle August Kestner and, three years later, the estate of his father Georg Kestner available to the city of Hanover in 1884, which thus received the basic holdings for the establishment of the Kestner Museum. He also donated 100,000 Reichsmarks to build this Kestnerianum Museum . His eldest brother Georg bequeathed his father's important autograph collection to the Leipzig University Library . The handwritten collections of notes by Hermann Kestner and his uncle August are now in the Hanover City Library. August's Italian painting collection is housed in the Lower Saxony State Museum. The family library, which contained several thousand volumes, was almost completely burned during World War II. Extensive diaries, letters and other writings from the family are kept in the Hannover City Archives.

Kestner became an honorary citizen of the city of Hanover and was given an honorary grave at the Engesohde city cemetery .


  • Heinrich Curschmann : Blue Book of the Corps Hannovera (1809-1899) . Göttingen 2002, p. 118 No. 335.
  • Rüdiger RE Fock: The Kestner. A German-French-Swiss family makes history (s) . Schnell Buch und Druck, Warendorf 2009, ISBN 978-3877167069 .
  • Luigi Ferdinando Tagliavini : August e Hermann Kestner cultori della musa popolare. Le vicende avventurose d'una raccolta manoscritta. In: Markus Engelhardt (Ed.): Music City Rome. Bärenreiter, Kassel 2011, ISBN 978-3-7618-2131-2 , pp. 370–451.
  • Johanna R. Rech: Two art connoisseurs among themselves: Gustavo Frizzoni to Hermann Kestner; an exchange of letters from the Kestner collection of the Leipzig University Library. In: Leipziger Jahrbuch zur Buchgeschichte 22, 2014, pp. 15–21.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Klaus Mlynek : Pretty families. In: Klaus Mlynek, Waldemar R. Röhrbein (eds.) U. a .: City Lexicon Hanover . From the beginning to the present. Schlütersche, Hannover 2009, ISBN 978-3-89993-662-9 , p. 310.
  2. Kösener Corpslisten 1960, 42 , 352; 64 , 172.