From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
Novalis was the pseudonym of Georg Philipp Friedrich Freiherr von Hardenberg (May 2, 1772 - March 25, 1801), an author and philosopher of early German Romanticism, best-known for his novel Heinrich von Ofterdingen.
Walter Pater includes Novalis's quote, "Philosophirn ist delphlegmatisiren, vivificiren" (to philosophize is to throw off apathy, to become revived)1 in his conclusion to Studies in the History of the Renaissance. Novalis' poetry and writings were also an influence on Hermann Hesse; Hesse initially published his novel Demian under the name Emil Sinclair, who was a friend of Novalis.
Novalis in print
Novalis' works were originally issued in two volumes by his friends Ludwig Tieck and Friedrich Schlegel (2 vols. 1802; a third volume was added in 1846).
Editions of Novalis' collected works have since been compiled by C. Meisner and Bruno Wille (1898), by E. Heilborn (3 vols., 1901), and by J. Minor (3 vols., 1907). Heinrich von Ofterdingen was published separately by J. Schmidt in 1876.
Novalis's Correspondence was edited by J. M. Raich in 1880. See R. Haym Die romantische Schule (Berlin, 1870); A. Schubart, Novalis' Leben, Dichten und Denken (1887); C. Busse, Novalis' Lyrik (1898); J. Bing, Friedrich von Hardenberg (Hamburg, 1899), E. Heilborn, Friedrich von Hardenberg (Berlin, 1901).
Novalis in English
Several of Novalis' philosophical works have been recently translated into English.
- Novalis: Notes for a Romantic Encyclopaedia (Das Allgemeine Brouillon), trans. and ed. David W. Wood, State University of New York Press, 2007. First English translation of Novalis´s unfinished project for a universal science.
- The Birth of Novalis: Friedrich von Hardenberg's Journal of 1797, With Selected Letters and Documents, trans. and ed. Bruce Donehower, State University of New York Press, 2007.
- Novalis: Philosophical Writings, trans. and ed. Margaret Mahoney Stoljar, State University of New York Press, 1997. This volume contains several of Novalis' works, including Pollen or Miscellaneous Observations, one of the few complete works published in his lifetime (though it was altered for publication by Friedrich Schlegel); Logological Fragments I and II; Monologue, a long fragment on language; Faith and Love or The King and Queen, a collection of political fragments also published during his lifetime; On Goethe; extracts from Das allgemeine Broullion or General Draft; and his essay Christendom or Europe. '
- Fichte Studies, trans. Jane Kneller, Cambridge University Press: 2003. This translation is part of the Cambridge Texts in the History of Philosophy Series.
- Classic and Romantic German Aesthetics, ed. Jay Bernstein, Cambridge University Press, 2003. This book is in the same series, the Fichte-Studies and contains a very good selection of fragments, plus it includes Novalis' Dialogues. Also in this collection are fragments by Schlegel and Hölderlin.
- Henry von Ofterdingen, trans. Palmer Hilty, Waveland Press: 1990.
- The Novices of Sais, trans. by Ralph Manheim, Archipelago Books: 2005. This translation was originally published in 1949. This edition includes illustrations by Paul Klee. The Novices of Sais contains the fairy tale "Hyacinth and Rose Petal."
- The Cambridge Companion to German Idealism. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2000.
- Behler, Ernst. German Romantic Literary Theory. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1993.
- Beiser, Frederick. German Idealism. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2002
- Fitzgerald, Penelope. The Blue Flower. Mariner Books, 1997. A novelization of Novalis' early life.
- Krell, David Farrell. Contagion. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1998.
- Kuzniar, Alice. Delayed Endings. Georgia: University of Georgia Press, 1987
- Lacoue-Labarthe, Phillipe and Jean-Luc Nancy. The Literary Absolute. Albany: State University of New York Press, 1988. (Note: This book does not discuss Novalis exclusively, but discusses the Early Romantic movement as a whole.)
- Molnár, Geza von. Novalis' "Fichte Studies"
- O’Brien, Wm. Arctander, Novalis: Signs of Revolution. Durham: Duke University Press, 1997.
"The others experienced nothing like it
even though they heard the same tales."