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Christoph Martin Wieland

Wieland, Christoph Martin (krĭsˈtôf märˈtĭn vēˈlänt) [key], 1733–1813, German poet and novelist. His style, typical of the German rococo, is elegant, satiric, and often playful. He borrowed subjects from classical antiquity as well as from fairy tales. A political novel, Der goldene Spiegel [the golden mirror] (1772), won him employment as a tutor to the princes of Saxe-Weimar. His Geschichte des Agathon (1766, tr. The History of Agathon, 1773) is an early psychological novel; Die Abderiten (1774, tr. The Republic of Fools, 1861) is his best-known political satire. Wieland's verse narratives include Musarion (1768) and a noted fairy-tale epic, Oberon (1780, tr. 1798; by John Quincy Adams, 1799). He edited the influential literary journal Teutsche Merkur (1773–1810) and, with his translations of Shakespeare, helped to pave the way for future literary developments in Germany.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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