Wolfram von Eschenbach


Wolfram von Eschenbach
/vawl"frddahm feuhn esh"euhn bahkh'/; Eng. /wool"freuhm von esh"euhn bahkh', -bahk'/
c1170-c1220, German poet.

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born с 1170
died с 1220

German poet.

An impoverished Bavarian knight, Wolfram apparently served a succession of lords. The epic "Parzival," one of his eight surviving lyric poems, is one of the masterpieces of the Middle Ages; likely based on a romance by Chrétien de Troyes, it introduced the theme of the Holy Grail into German literature. Richard Wagner used it as the basis for his last opera, Parsifal (1882). Wolfram's influence on later poets was profound, and, with Hartmann von Aue and Gottfried von Strassburg, he is one of the three great Middle High German epic poets.

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▪ German poet

born c. 1170
died c. 1220

      German poet whose epic Parzival, distinguished alike by its moral elevation and its imaginative power, is one of the most profound literary works of the Middle Ages.

      An impoverished Bavarian knight, Wolfram apparently served a succession of Franconian lords: Abensberg, Wildenberg, and Wertheim are among the places he names in his work. He also knew the court of the landgrave Hermann I of Thuringia, where he met the great medieval lyric poet Walther von der Vogelweide. Though a self-styled illiterate, Wolfram shows an extensive acquaintance with French and German literature, and it is probable that he knew how to read, if not how to write.

      Wolfram's surviving literary works, all bearing the stamp of his unusually original personality, consist of eight lyric poems, chiefly Tagelieder (“Dawn Songs,” describing the parting of lovers at morning); the epic Parzival; the unfinished epic Willehalm, telling the history of the crusader Guillaume d'Orange; and short fragments of a further epic, the so-called Titurel, which elaborates the tragic love story of Sigune from book 3 of Parzival.

      Parzival, probably written between 1200 and 1210, is a poem of 25,000 lines in 16 books. Likely based on an unfinished romance of Chrétien de Troyes, Perceval, ou Le Conte du Graal, it introduced the theme of the Holy Grail into German literature. Its beginning and end are new material, probably of Wolfram's own invention, although he attributes it to an unidentified and probably fictitious Provençal poet, Guiot. The story of the ignorant and naive Parzival, who sets out on his adventures without even knowing his own name, employs the classic fairy-tale motif of “the guileless fool” who, through innocence and artlessness, reaches a goal denied to wiser men.

      Wolfram uses Parzival's dramatic progress from folk-tale dunce to wise and responsible keeper of the Grail to present a subtle allegory of man's spiritual education and development. Parzival also figures as the hero of Richard Wagner's last opera, Parsifal (1882). The complexity of Wolfram's theme is matched by his eccentric style, which is characterized by rhetorical flourishes, ambiguous syntax, and the free use of dialect.

      Wolfram's influence on later poets was profound, and he is a member, with Hartmann von Aue and Gottfried von Strassburg, of the great triumvirate of Middle High German epic poets.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

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  • Wolfram Von Eschenbach — Wolfram von Eschenbach (né autour de 1170 dans le village de Eschenbach en Bavière mort autour de 1220) était un chevalier et un poète allemand du Moyen Âge. Il est considéré comme l un des plus grands poètes épiques de son temps. Comme… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Wolfram von eschenbach — Wolfram von Eschenbach (né autour de 1170 dans le village de Eschenbach en Bavière mort autour de 1220) était un chevalier et un poète allemand du Moyen Âge. Il est considéré comme l un des plus grands poètes épiques de son temps. Comme… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Wolfram von Eschenbach — • Middle High German epic poet (d. 1216) Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Wolfram von Eschenbach     Wolfram von Eschenbach      …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Wolfram von Eschenbach — Wolfram von Ẹschenbach,   mittelhochdeutscher Dichter, * um 1170/80, ✝ um 1220; neben Gottfried von Strassburg und Hartmann von Aue der bedeutendste Vertreter der mittelhochdeutschen höfischen Epik. Obwohl Wolfram in seinem Werk eine Vielzahl… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Wolfram von Eschenbach — Wolfram von Eschenbach, neben Gottfried von Straßburg und Walther von der Vogelweide der bedeutendste deutsche Dichter des Mittelalters, wurde in der zweiten Hälfte des 12. Jahrh. aus dem altadligen Geschlecht, das von dem fränkischen Städtchen… …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Wolfram von Eschenbach — Wolfram von Eschenbach, s. Eschenbach 1) …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

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  • Wolfram von Eschenbach — [vō̂l′främ fō̂n esh′ən bäkh΄] 1170? 1220?; Ger. epic poet …   English World dictionary


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