Robert Hamerling

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Robert Hamerling, engraving by Doris Raab

Robert Hamerling , baptized as Rupert Johann Hammerling , (born March 24, 1830 in Kirchberg am Walde , Lower Austria ; † July 13, 1889 in Stifting near Graz ) was an Austrian poet and writer .


Robert Hamerling was born the son of a penniless weaver in Kirchberg am Walde. From 1840 he attended - with the support of patrons and sponsors - the grammar school of the Cistercian monastery in Zwettl and then the Schotten grammar school in Vienna . In 1848 he joined the revolution ("Germany is my fatherland! And Austria? Ei, my motherland!") And began his studies at the University of Vienna (subjects: classical philology , philosophy , history , medicine ).

In 1852 Hamerling worked as a substitute teacher for classical languages ​​in Vienna. From 1853 to 1854 he taught at the Academic Gymnasium in Graz, from 1855 to 1866 he worked as a high school teacher in Trieste . There he wrote theater reviews for the Triester Zeitung . In autumn 1866 he had to retire because of a chronic stomach ailment (1889: incurable stomach cancer ) and from then on lived in Graz, where his most fruitful literary creative phase began.

At the age of 60, Hamerling died on July 13, 1889 in his (still existing) villa in Stifting, Kutscherwirtgasse 10 (later: Stiftingtalstraße 44; today: Billrothgasse 6, Graz-Ries ) of Zehrfieber . He was buried in the St. Leonhard cemetery in Graz.


Hamerling memorial, Stadtpark, near Coventryallee, Graz, from 1904
Plaster model for the Hamerling monument in Vienna
Hamerling monument in Waidhofen an der Thaya

Hamerling was one of the most widely read German-speaking authors in his day. His main works include the epic Ahasuerus in Rome (written in 1865), which first made him known to a broad readership, and The King of Sion (1869).


On the first anniversary of his death, July 13, 1890, a memorial plaque was unveiled in the center of Graz at the house in which he had lived in Realschulgasse (renamed from 1899, until today: Hamerlinggasse 6). Hans Brandstetter (1854–1925) made a portrait of the writer in relief in white marble. There were among others present: Ferdinand Portugall (1837-1901), Mayor of the City of Graz, Julius Derschatta von Standhalt (1852-1924), Styrian member of the Reichsrat , Aurelius Polzer (1848-1924), poet and writer and Clothilde Gstirner , who longtime partner of Hamerling. The official speech was given by the national poet Franz Goltsch (1865–1921). The aged mother of the deceased observed what was happening from a window of the upper secondary school opposite.

In his birthplace, Kirchberg am Walde, there was a Robert Hamerling Museum until 2006, supported by the Hamerling Association. The German national politician Georg Ritter von Schönerer (1842–1921) pulled down the house where he was born in 1891 and had the foundation house built in its place. Today there is a museum in the foundation house.

In 1890, in Vienna Rudolfsheim-Fünfhaus (15th district), the Robert-Hamerling-Gasse named in 1904 in the Josefstadt (8th district) of Hamerlingplatz , and to unknown times in Penzing (14th district), the Hamerlinggasse and Simmering (11th district) the Hamerlingweg . In Graz, since 1889, the Realschulgasse connecting the Opernring and Hans-Sachs-Gasse has been renamed Hamerlinggasse - Hamerling lived here in house number 6. In Linz , Hamerlingstrasse and the adjoining high school are named after him; likewise the Hamerlingweg in the local situation Zehlendorf Süd in the district Zehlendorf of the Berlin borough of Steglitz-Zehlendorf .

In 1980 the Austrian Post issued a special postage stamp for its 150th birthday.

The eminent Latvian poet and playwright Aspazija (1865–1943) borrowed her stage name from Hamerling's novel Aspasia in 1887 , which she later translated into Latvian (published in continuations in 1899) and processed into a drama entitled Aspazija (book edition and first performance in 1923).

An anthroposophical association in Graz has chosen Hamerling as its namesake.


Original editions

  • Venus in exile. A poem in five songs. With lyrical appendix . Kober, Leipzig / Prague 1858. Digitized 4th edition.
  • Senses and affections. A youthful life in songs . Richter, Hamburg 1859. Digitized version of the 1868 edition
  • A romantic swan song. With an appendix of hymns . Richter, Hamburg 1862. Digitized 4th edition. 1873
  • Ahasuerus in Rome. A poem in six songs . Richter, Hamburg 1866 (title of the following editions: Ahasuerus in Rome )
  • The king of Sion. Epic poetry in ten songs . Richter, Hamburg 1869 ( digitized version )
  • Danton and Robespierre. Tragedy in five acts . Richter, Hamburg 1871. Digitized 2nd edition 1871
  • Teut. A joke game in two acts . Richter, Hamburg 1872. Digitized 2nd edition 1872
  • The seven deadly sins. A poem . Richter, Hamburg 1873. Digitized version of the 5th edition, 1877
  • Aspasia. An artist and romance novel from ancient Hellas . Hesse & Becker, Leipzig 1875. Digitized volume 1 , volume 2 , volume 3
  • Lord lucifer. A comedy in five acts . Richter, Hamburg 1880. Digitized
  • Cupid and Psyche. Poetry in six songs . Richter, Hamburg 1882. Digitized
  • Homunculus. Modern epic in ten songs . Richter, Hamburg 1888. Digitized
  • Stations of my life pilgrimage . Autobiography. Publishing house and printing company Actien-Gesellschaft (formerly IF Richter-Verlag), Hamburg 1889. Digitized 2nd edition 1889
  • Apprenticeship years of love. Diary sheets and letters . Publishing House, Hamburg 1890 (posthumously)
  • The atomism of the will. Contributions to the Critique of Modern Knowledge . Publishing House, Hamburg 1891 (posthumously)
  • Last greetings from Stiftinghaus . Lyric bequest, ed. v. Oskar Linke. Publishing House, Hamburg 1894 (posthumously)
  • Unprinted letters . Four parts. Daberkow, Vienna 1897–1901 (posthumous)

As translator

As editor

  • The year of flowers in pictures and songs. A harvest of blossoms from recent German poetry . Waldmann, Frankfurt an der Oder 1881

Work editions

Newer editions

  • Poems. With a biographical sketch , ed. v. Heinrich O. Proskauer. Amtshofpresse Manufaktur, Ottersberg 1993, ISBN 3-922704-33-6
  • Homunculus. Epic in 10 songs . Province, Weitra 1993, ISBN 3-900878-49-8
  • Aspasia. A romance novel from old Hellas . Kornmann, Winterbach 1995, ISBN 3-934399-03-7
  • Pericles and the sea battle off Samos. The most beautiful stories from the novel "Aspasia" . Kornmann, Winterbach 2000, ISBN 3-934399-08-8


Web links

Commons : Robert Hamerling  - Collection of images, videos and audio files
Wikisource: Robert Hamerling  - Sources and full texts


  1. The municipality of Kirchberg am Walde (Gmünd district) borders in the east on the southwest of the Waidhofen an der Thaya district
  2. Hans-Sachs-Gasse ends at Tummelplatz, which is still the location of the academic high school today.

Individual evidence

  1. Graz Notes. Robert Hamerling (...). In:  Grazer Volksblatt , No. 158/1889 (XXII. Volume), July 13, 1889, p. 3 (unpaginated), column 1. (Online at ANNO ). Template: ANNO / Maintenance / gre.
  2. ^ Mirella Kuchling: Literary walks through Graz. A search for clues . Steirische Verlags-Gesellschaft, Graz 2004, ISBN 3-85489-101-6 , p. 105.
  3. ^ Deceased in Graz. In:  Grazer Volksblatt , No. 160/1889 (XIV. Volume), July 16, 1889, p. 4 (unpaginated), column 3. (Online at ANNO ). Template: ANNO / Maintenance / gre.
  4. Little Chronicle. Commemoration for Robert Hamerling. In:  Prager Tagblatt , No. 192/1890 (XIV. Volume), July 15, 1890, p. 4, column 3. (Online at ANNO ). Template: ANNO / Maintenance / ptb.
  5. ^ History of the poet Robert Hamerling , on
  6. Entry on Robert Hamerling in the Austria-Forum  (as a stamp illustration)
  7. ^ Stahnke, Astrida B .: Aspazija: Her life and her drama . Lanham; New York; London 1984, p. 36.
  8. Imprint of the General Anthroposophical Society in Graz. In: Retrieved February 26, 2017 .