Unpublished Works | The Poetic Achievements of W. Pinder. 1863 © The Nietzsche Channel

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The Poetic Achievements of W. Pinder.1

Attempt at a Critique.

The Germania by the Chronicler 1862-63.2
FW Nietzsche
[June 1863]

Excerpt from:
Friedrich Nietzsche in Words and Pictures.
Part 2. Nietzsche's School Years and Military Service: 1858-68.

Translation Copyright The Nietzsche Channel.

Nietzsche's Writings as a Student.
Translation Copyright 2012, The Nietzsche Channel.

After having reviewed the musical products of our Germania, let us turn to the poetic ones. W. Pinder, who in the musical contest played merely a spectator's role, may lead off here. I recall having already made some brief remarks about his first poetic submission of January [18]61, "The Sailor's Northern Funeral." We should not even waste much time with the entry from February, a translation of "The Grandmother" by V[ictor] Hugo,3 and of "[The Death of] Joan [of Arc]" by [Casimir] Delavigne.4 Both were awkward and clumsy in their close relation to the original text, and muddled here and there by the most unpleasant clichés. To translate an exercise from French into German and to produce bad rhymes from German prose—if that is an accomplishment, then it is a minor one, although the effort may have been far greater than the result. In April, another translation of two medieval High German poems appeared, obviously a very careless work, in which only the calligraphic skill of the author can actually be praised—in contrast to the subsequent work that was done. In the back, i.e. on the last page of the entry, the poet does not wish to be biased, which is a pious wish, and "wants to lead the esteemed reader to a completely different area that deals with the Prometheus legend and makes the poetic outpourings only a momentary requirement." What this truly Babylonian confused notion has to do with the thoughts in the background is a mystery to me, like the meaning of the poem that follows. It is quite clear to me that [....]

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Unpublished Works | The Poetic Achievements of W. Pinder. 1863 © The Nietzsche Channel