Heinrich Heine

Heinrich Ḥayyim Heine (13 December 1797 – 17 February 1856) was a German-Jewish poet, journalist, essayist, and literary critic. He is best known outside of Germany for his early lyric poetry, which was set to music in the form of Lieder (art songs) by composers such as Robert Schumann and Franz Schubert. Heine's later verse and prose are distinguished by their satirical wit and irony. Part of the Young Germany movement, his radical political views led to many of his works being banned by German authorities. Following the July Revolution in France, from 1931 onward, Heine spent his life as an Prussian expatriate in Paris. Heine railed against patriotic chauvinism, penning the following verse in his poem "Almansour" (1820): "Dort, wo man Bücher verbrennt, verbrennt man am Ende auch Menschen" (Where they burn books, they will ultimately also burn people). He was so detested by the Nazis that his gravesite was desecrated by exploding it with dynamite.


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