Bettina of Arnim

Bettina of Arnim

Bettina of Arnim (* 4. April 1785 in Frankfurt/Main; † 20. January 1859 in Berlin), born as Elizabeth Catharina Ludovica Magdalena Brentano was a German authoress and an important representativethe German romance.

Bettina called itself usually Bettine. This designation is used today also by some bio graphs.

Table of contents

personal record

Bettina was that sieved from twelve children of the wholesale merchant Peter Anton Brentano and his Mrs. Maximiliane. Up to their 13. Lebensjahr was educated it in the Ursulinenkloster in Fritzlar. After deathparents lived it with its grandmother Sophie of La Roche in open brook, later in Frankfurt. Its sister Gunda was married with the lawyer Friedrich Karl von Savigny and lived in Marburg, where Bettina also spent some time. 1810 followed it then the Savignys to Berlin.

1811 married Bettina Achim of Arnim, which they already know in Frankfurt as study colleagues of its brother Clemens had learned. The marriage took twenty years up to its sudden death 1831and brought out seven children. After this marriage the production time of its literary activity began. In addition it worried about the publication of the works of its man and its own writings.

1858 did not suffer itself it an impact accumulation, from that itmore recovered. To 20. January 1859 died it in circles of their family.

She is the nut/mother of the German authoress Gisela von Arnim.

artistic work

Bettina wrote different letter novels, with those it however the underlying letterswith much dichterischer liberty worked over again, without marking however this.

  • 1835 appeared Goethe's exchange of letters with a child - a sales impact, which affected the Goethe picture of the future strongly. 1929 was for this found the original letters.
  • 1840 processed it in the letter novel The Günderode their friendship with Karoline of Günderode and their suicide.
  • 1844 appeared Clemens Brentanos spring ring, from youth letters it twisted
  • 1848 appeared the letter novel Ilius Pamphilius and the Ambrosia.

Further busy it itself intensively with music and drawing.These efforts were limited however among other things by their extensive housewife obligations and the money concerns of the family.

political commitment

Bettina of Arnims social commitment began 1831, when in Berlin the Cholera demanded numerous victims. It wrote that clearlysocialcritical work this book belongs to the king (1843). In the disillusionment, which followed the failed collection of 1848, she wrote 1852 its continuation of discussions with Dämonen. This was presented again 1919, supplemental by the sub-title „to call to the revolution “.

contacts to famous personalities

the Petrihaus in the Brentanopark in Rödelheim

Bettina of Arnim became among other things admit by their numerous contacts to personalities from politics and culture:

  • 1806 began the friendship lasting for a long time with Goethe's nut/mother Katharina Elizabeth. One year later visited it in Weimar for the first time from it the God ores poets themselves, with which late famous exchanges of letters between the two, become, began.
  • 1836 lived itself Johanna Mathieux, the later wife Gottfried Kinkels with it in Berlin, with that it very wellgot used to. Johanna entered piano instruction to the children and studied a multiplicity of mehrstimmiger songs with them.
  • In one the citizen of Berlin salon met it Rahel Robert (late Rahel Varnhagen).
  • 1840 caused its influence the fact that the Jakobs and Wilhelm Grimm - since 1837 verfemt - to assume knew a call to the citizens of Berlin university.

In the so-called Petrihaus in Frankfurt Rödelheim, in which its brother Clemens temporarily resided, met Bettina numerous writers and writer, under it also the brothers Grimm, ennobles Schopenhauer and Marianne of Willemer. Also Johann Wolfgang von Goethe stayed overnight here several times.


Bettina of Arnim and by different sides are very differently noticed.

Contemporaries described it as „a cricketful, unbehandelbares creature “, as Schwätzerin and a koboldhaftes nature. She did not only trouble Goethe with her impossible behavior. Many admire itin addition, as if emanzipierte, much-talented and curious woman, who successfully supported personal independence and mental liberty, equally for itself, as also for other humans.

The life of Bettina of Arnim - in particular their relationship with Goethe - becomesof the French-Czech author Milan Kundera in its novel the immortality regards very in detail. Merged into the title-giving main topic of the book Kundera describes its interpretation of Bettina, after which she tried time life, by its employment for outstanding personalities of their timeto reach and the Suggestion of a deep emotional relationship with them eternal fame. This interpretation is illustrated mainly by the analysis of its correspondence with Goethe and the changes made by it with the publication to it.



1985 became from cause their 200. Birthday inBerlin the Bettina of Arnim society based. It has the goal, life and work of these important citizens of Berlin woman 19. To make well-known century of a broad public. The society writes every three years out an unendowed research price and gives the international yearbook to thatBettina of Arnim society out, which appears in the Saint Albin publishing house in Berlin.

After their the 1992 donated Bettina of Arnim price was designated.

One receives a view of the life of Arnims also in the Brentanohaus. Here it concerns a summer residence of the Brentanos,which still in family estate is.

to literature

  • Inge-borrow Drewitz: Bettine of Arnim. 3. Edition, William Heyne publishing house, Munich, 1980
  • Helmut Hirsch: Bettine of Arnim, Rowohlt paperback publishing house GmbH, Reinbek with Hamburg, 1987 and.o.
  • Konstanze Bäumer (+), hard TIG Schultz: Bettina of Arnim, (in former times: Collection Metzler, Bd. 255, publishing house J. B. Metzler, Stuttgart and Weimar, 1995; today only:) Saint Albin publishing house Berlin (2004), [ISBN 3-930293-49-8]

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