Rudolf of Ems

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Rudolf von Ems: the poet kneels before God with his writing. Fol. 1 (detail) from the Weltchronik , Bohemia (Prague), 3rd quarter of the 14th century. University and State Library Fulda, Aa 88

Rudolf von Ems (* around 1200 in Hohenems / Vorarlberg ; † 1254  ?) Was a German epic poet of the Middle Ages .


Coat of arms of the Lords of Ems

Rudolf von Ems comes from an important noble family in Vorarlberg , the von Ems family . He was born in Hohenems and was in the service of the Count of Montfort . His literary output can be dated between 1220 and 1254, but his works have not been fully preserved.

Rudolf von Ems is believed to be the companion of King Conrad IV (HRR) . died on his trip to Italy .

Literary work

Rudolf himself describes Gottfried von Strasbourg as his role model - in his case more than the not infrequently formulaic Reverenz, since he sometimes quotes almost literally from Tristan . He was also suggested twice by Gottfried to offer a “literature review” in an excursus in which he scrutinized court poetry and named many contemporaries and also his own works.

Of the traditional works, the story The Good Gerhard is the oldest. It is a glorification of the humility of the Christian spirit, probably adapted from a Latin source . It is followed by Barlaam and Josaphat , written around between 1225 and 1230 after an adaptation of the legend of the conversion of an Indian king's son to Christianity (edited by Pfeiffer, Leipzig, 1843, reprinted 1965) and Willehalm von Orlens , which was translated from Greek into Latin The story of the childmare between Willehalm and Amelie, who are among the most famous lovers of the Middle Ages.

From the world chronicle : King David with scribes and musicians; around 1340 ( Zurich Central Library )

The Alexander novel , written around 1240, has remained unfinished. The upbringing and struggles of Alexander the Great are described in 21,000 verses , the hero is a model of knightly virtue. Rudolf used the Historia de preliis and the Historiae Alexandri Magni by Curtius Rufus as sources .

The world chronicle is Rudolf's last work dedicated to King Conrad IV. It is the first German-language world chronicle . Rudolf divided it into six world ages, only the first four world ages could be completed by him. Sources are the Vulgate , the Historia Scholastica of Petrus Comestor , the Imago Mundi of Honorius Augustodunensis and the pantheon of Gottfried of Viterbo . A special feature were so-called acrostics : large initials at the beginning of each world age. The chronicle tells the story of mankind from creation to the death of Solomon with the tendency to legitimize the rule of the Hohenstaufen . Even in the 13th century it was merged with the Christherre Chronicle in some manuscripts . The various manuscripts are divided into five classes:

  • 1st and 2nd class: World chronicle and Christherre chronicle in pure form
  • 3rd and 4th grade: manuscripts in which the two reviews are linked in different ways
  • 5th grade: The pure text in connection with continuation and adaptation by Heinrich von München .


Text output

  • Rudolf von Ems, Der guote Gêrhart , ed. by John Asher. 3rd edition, Tübingen 1989. (Old German text library, vol. 56).
  • Rudolf von Ems, The Good Gerhard , ed. by Moritz Haupt. Weidmann'sche Buchhandlung, Leipzig 1840.
  • Rudolf von Ems, Barlaam and Josaphat , ed. by Franz Pfeiffer. Leipzig 1843. (German Seals of the Middle Ages, Vol. 3), (Reprint Berlin 1965).
  • Rudolf von Ems, Alexander. A courtly verse novel of the 13th century , 2 volumes, ed. by Victor Junk. Knowledge Buchgesellschaft, Darmstadt 1970. (Unchanged reprint of the Leipzig edition 1928–1929).
  • Rudolf von Ems, world chronicle . Edited from the Wernigeroder manuscript. by Gustav Ehrismann . 2nd unchanged edition, Weidmann, Dublin 1967. (German texts of the Middle Ages, vol. 20).
  • Rudolf von Ems, Willehalm von Orlens , ed. from the Wasserburger Codex of the Fürstlich Fürstenbergische Hofbibliothek in Donaueschingen by Victor Junk, Berlin 1905. (German texts of the Middle Ages, vol. 2) (reprint Dublin / Zurich 1967).



  • Angelika Odenthal: Rudolf von Ems. A bibliography . Gabel, Cologne 1988. ISBN 3-921527-14-7 .

Lexicon article

Investigations on individual aspects

  • Xenja von Ertzdorff : Rudolf von Ems. Investigations into the courtly novel in the 13th century . Munich, Wilhelm Fink Verlag, 1967, 446 p. Color. Fig. Rud. v. Ems, Weltchronik on frontispiece (printed as a habilitation thesis on a recommendation from the Phil. Faculty of the University of Freiburg i.Br.).
  • Corinna Biesterfeldt: Moniage - the withdrawal from the world as a narrative ending. Investigations on "Kaiserchronik", "König Rother", "Orendel", "Barlaam und Josaphat", "Prosa-Lancelot" . Hirzel, Stuttgart 2004. ISBN 3-7776-1238-3 .
  • Helmut Brackert: Rudolf von Ems. Poetry and history . Winter, Heidelberg 1968.
  • Danielle Jaurant: Rudolf's “Weltchronik” as an open form. Tradition structure and history of effects . Francke, Tübingen u. a. 1995. (Bibliotheca Germanica, Vol. 34), ISBN 3-7720-2025-9 .
  • Elisabeth Martschini: Writing and writing in courtly narrative texts of the 13th century. Kiel, Solivagus-Verlag 2014, chapter Rudolf von Ems: Willehalm von Orlens pp. 65–75, pp. 291–556, ISBN 978-3-943025-14-9 .
  • Otto Neudeck: Telling of Emperor Otto. For the fictionalization of history in Middle High German literature . Böhlau, Cologne a. a. 2003. (Norm and Structure, Vol. 18), ISBN 3-412-04803-8 .
  • Rüdiger Schnell: Rudolf von Ems. Studies on the inner unity of his entire work . Francke, Bern 1969. (Basler Studies on German Language and Literature, Vol. 41).
  • Wilfried Schouwink: Fortuna in the Alexander novel by Rudolf von Ems. Studies on the relationship between Fortuna and Virtus by an author of the late Staufer period . Kümmerle, Göppingen 1977. (Göppingen works on German studies, Vol. 212), ISBN 3-87452-361-6 .
  • Armin Schulz: Poetics of the Hybrid. Scheme, variation and intertextual combinatorics in the Minne- and Aventiureepik: Willehalm von Orlens - Partonopier and Meliur - Wilhelm von Österreich - The beautiful Magelone . Schmidt, Berlin 2000. (Philological studies and sources, Vol. 161), ISBN 3-503-04964-9 .
  • Monika Schulz: Discourses on marriage law. Studies on "King Rother", "Partonopier und Meliur", "Arabel", "Der guote Gêrhart", "The Ring" . Winter, Heidelberg 2005, ISBN 3-8253-5103-3 .
  • Meinolf Schumacher : Tolerance, merchant spirit and holiness in cultural contact with the "pagans". The Middle High German story "Der guote Gêrhart" by Rudolf von Ems. In: Journal for Intercultural German Studies. H. 1/1, 2010, ISSN  1869-3660 , pp. 49-58 ( digitized version ).
  • Ingrid von Tippelskirch: The "world chronicle" of Rudolf von Ems. Studies on the conception of history and political intention . Kümmerle, Göppingen 1979. (Göppinger papers on German studies, vol. 267), ISBN 3-87452-442-6 .
  • Erika Weigele-Ismael: Rudolf von Ems: Wilhelm von Orlens. Studies on the equipment and iconography of an illustrated German epic manuscript of the 13th century using the example of the Cgm 63 of the Bavarian State Library in Munich . Lang, Frankfurt am Main a. a. 1997. (Europäische Hochschulschriften; Series 28, Art History, Vol. 285), ISBN 3-631-30202-9 .
  • Franziska Wenzel: Situations of courtly communication. Studies on Rudolfs von Ems “Willehalm von Orlens” . Lang, Frankfurt am Main a. a. 2000. (Mikrokosmos, Vol. 57), ISBN 3-631-36072-X .
  • Sonja Zöller: Emperor, businessman and the power of money. Gerhard Unmaze of Cologne as financier of the imperial politics and the "good Gerhard" of Rudolf von Ems . Fink, Munich 1993. (Research on the history of older German literature, Vol. 16), ISBN 3-7705-2850-6 online .

Web links

Wikisource: Rudolf von Ems  - Sources and full texts
Commons : Rudolf von Ems  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ The Counts of Hohenems (in the Vorarlberg Chronicle)