Georg Philipp Harsdorfer (November 01, 1607 - September 17, 1658)
Born: 1st November, 1607
Died: 17th September, 1658
Nationality: German poet
Region: Nurnberg, Germany
Notable works: "Frauenzimmer Gesprech-Spiele"

Georg Philipp Harsdorfer Facts

Biography

Georg Philipp Harsdorfer, Harsdorfer also spelled Harsdorffer, (born November 1, 1607, Nurnberg [Germany]--died September 17?, 1658, Nurnberg), German poet and theorist of the Baroque movement who wrote more than 47 volumes of poetry and prose and, with Johann Klaj (Clajus), founded the most famous of the numerous Baroque literary societies, the Pegnesischer Blumenorden ("Pegnitz Order of Flowers").

Of patrician background, Harsdorfer undertook university studies and an extended Bildungsreise ("educational journey") through England, France, Italy, and the Netherlands. In 1632 he became a junior judge in Nurnberg and in 1655 a member of the town senate. His poetry, typical of the Baroque movement, is characterized by elaborate and sometimes playful rhetoric and exaggerated poetic forms. He laid particular emphasis, in his poetry and in his theoretical work, on Klangmalerei ("painting in sound"). His most famous theoretical work, a handbook for Baroque poets, is ironically titled Poetischer Trichter, die Teutsche Dicht- und Reimkunst, ohne Behuf der lateinischen Sprache, in VI Stunden einzugiessen (1647-53; "A Poetic Funnel for Infusing the Art of German Poetry and Rhyme in Six Hours, Without Benefit of the Latin Language"). Widely read in its time was Frauenzimmer Gesprech-Spiele (1641-49; "Women's Conversation Plays"), which, like many of his works, had a didactic purpose. It consists of eight dialogues aimed at teaching women all they need to know to become useful members of society. His Pegnesisches Schafergedicht (1644; "Pegnitz Idyll"), written with Klaj and modeled on the English poet Sir Philip Sidney's Arcadia, did much to spread the fashion of pastoral drama. Harsdorfer also translated works from French, Spanish, and Italian.

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