german historian
Not so happily ever after: Fairytales that lay undiscovered for 150 years tell stories of wicked step-fathers witch-slaying princesses and scared young princes

The stories were compiled by German historian Franz Xaver von Schönwerth in the 1880s - around the same time as the Brothers Grimm folk tales - from across the Bavarian region of Oberpfalz.

While the well-known Grimm fairytales often feature a vulnerable princess and dragon-slaying hero, Schönwerth reverses their roles - offering readers powerful female and vulnerable male characters.

In Schönwerth’s fantastical version Cinderella, for example, the heroine uses her golden - not glass - slippers to rescue her lover from beyond the moon.

yoooooooooo omg

ID #23418

Name: Josh
Age: 16
Country: Canada

Hi there, my name is Josh and I’m from Western Canada. I’ve never done this before, but I would like to expand my worldview and find new friends who share my interests. I’m kind of aloof but if we click I’ll warm up to you over time. My best language is English, but I know a very small amount of German and an even smaller bit of French. If you know these languages well I would love for you to teach me more about them! (Also, if you are from Switzerland, I would love to learn about your country, I want to study abroad there in university!)
My passion is world history- I aspire to become a historian, and I want to learn as much as I can about the history of our world and its cultures- it does not matter what country. Right now, I am especially interested in military history. Acting is another thing I love, but I think I have a long way to go to act well. I love travelling a lot, too- if you gave me a chance to go on any trip, I would go in a heartbeat. I also like gaming, JJBA, watching classic movies and reading classic books (my favourite writers are Hemingway and Dostoevsky) My favourite music artists are Mac DeMarco and Parquet Courts, but I have a lot of different kinds of music in my playlist.
If you’re interested in any of these things, don’t hesitate to contact me! I’d prefer to start off with email or social media, but I wouldn’t mind snail mail eventually (I don’t have the best handwriting though!)

Preferences: 15-18 please. The rest doesn’t matter so long as we can have a good, open-minded conversation!

My firm belief as a Turk is that democracy and human rights in Turkey can only be established by facing history and acknowledging historic wrongdoings.
—  Taner Akçam, Turkish-German historian of the Armenian genocide
Leistung hat auf keinen Fall etwas in der Schule zu suchen. Es ist für Schüler nicht wichtig, etwas zu leisten. Es ist nur wichtig, daß die verstehen, wofür es sich lohnt, etwas zu leisten.

Performance has by no means a place in school. It is not important for students to perform. The only important thing is that they understand what it is worth for to perform.

Ernst Peter Fischer (*1947), German historian and publicist of science

People of Germany: Friedrich Schiller (1759-1805) was a German poet, philosopher, physician, historian, and playwright. He was born in Marbach, Württemberg as the only son of a military doctor. He grew up in a very religious family and spent much of his youth studying the Bible, which would later influence his writing for the theatre. He had 5 sisters. He was named after King Frederick the Great, but he was called Fritz by nearly everyone. As a boy, Schiller was excited by the idea of becoming a cleric and often put on black robes and pretended to preach. Later, he entered the Karlsschule Stuttgart (an elite military academy), where he eventually studied medicine. During most of his short life, he suffered from illnesses that he tried to cure himself. While at the Karlsschule, he read Rousseau and Goethe and discussed Classical ideals with his classmates. At school, he wrote his first play, The Robbers, which dramatizes the conflict between 2 aristocratic brothers: the elder, Karl Moor, leads a group of rebellious students into the Bohemian forest where they become Robin Hood-like bandits, while Franz Moor, the younger brother, schemes to inherit his father’s considerable estate. The play’s critique of social corruption and its affirmation of proto-revolutionary republican ideals astounded its original audience. Schiller became an overnight sensation. Later, he would be made an honorary member of the French Republic because of this play. In 1780, he obtained a post as regimental doctor in Stuttgart, a job he disliked. In order to attend the first performance of The Robbers in Mannheim, Schiller left his regiment without permission. As a result, he was arrested, sentenced to 14 days of imprisonment, and forbidden by Karl Eugen from publishing any further works. He fled Stuttgart in 1782, going via Frankfurt, Mannheim, Leipzig, and Dresden to Weimar. Along this journey he had an affair with an army officer’s wife Charlotte von Kalb. In 1789, he was appointed professor of History and Philosophy in Jena, where he wrote only historical works.

Goethe convinced him to return to playwriting. He and Goethe founded the Weimar Theater, which became the leading theater in Germany. Their collaboration helped lead to a renaissance of drama in Germany. For his achievements, Schiller was ennobled in 1802 by the Duke of Saxe-Weimar, adding the nobiliary particle “von” to his name. He remained in Weimar, Saxe-Weimar until his death at 45 from tuberculosis in 1805.


Johann Christoph Friedrich von Schiller (10 November 1759 – 9 May 1805) 

German poet, philosopher, physician, historian, and playwright. (Wikipedia)

From our stacks: 1. Frontispiece “Frederick Schiller. Fr. Pecht del.  J.L. Raab sc.”  2. ‘Poems’  3. “The Fight with the Dragon.” Artist: W. Camphausen.”  4. ‘Semele’  5. “Amelia. Fr. Pecht del. A. Schultheise sculp.”  6. “The Maiden’s Lament. Artist: F. A. Kaulbach.” from Schiller’s Works. Illustrated by the Greatest German Artists. Edited by J.G. Fischer with Biographical Introduction by Hjalmar H. Boyesen, Ph.D. Volume I. Philadelphia: George Barrie, 1883


The war helm of King of Portugal D.Sebastião, the Desired

This is the world leading war helm with the biggest amount of cuts in it89 marks of scimitars and swords marked on its steel, none of them are in the rear.

Meaning that the young 24 years old Portuguese King never showed his back to his moorish enemies, even while wearing his bullet proof armor. The war helm that holds the 2nd place, has 24 sword cuts, this one has 89.

This scientific investigation also proves that this 5kg steel war helm suffered the impact of a 16th century grenade launcher.

I have finally finished subtitling this video, where this german-portuguese historian, Rainer Daehnhardt, tells us about the helm used by El-Rei de Portugal D.Sebastião and why at least 70 swords shattered when hitting it. Of why this war helm actually weighted zero kg (!) when using it, allowing great agility for its carrier. 

For those who love armors and war technology, this is the video for you.

“He fought against a hundred, possibly even against a thousand men. He did not take a step back. Blessed be the country you born and the flag you defended!”

— Rainer Daehnhardt

Schillerplatz in Stuttgart, Baden-Württemberg, Southwestern Germany. It’s a square in the old city center of Stuttgart, named in honor of the German poet, philosopher, historian, and dramatist Friedrich Schiller.

Some historical mentions of Bosnian language:

  • In the work Skazanie izjavljenno o pismeneh that was written between 1423 and 1426, the Bulgarian chronicler Constantine the Philosopher, in parallel with the Bulgarian, Serbian, Slovenian, Czech and Croatian, he also mentions the Bosnian language.
  • The notary book of the town of Kotor from July 3 in 1436 recounts a duke buying a girl that is described as a: “Bosnian woman, heretic and in the Bosnian language called Djevena”.
  • The work Thesaurus Polyglottus, published in Frankfurt am Main in 1603 by the German historian and linguist Hieronymus Megiser, mentions the Bosnian dialect alongside the Dalmatian, Croatian and Serbian one.
  • The Bosnian Franciscan Matija Divković, regarded as the founder of the modern literature of Bosnia and Herzegovina, asserts in his work “Nauk krstjanski za narod slovinski” (“The Christian doctrine for the Slavic peoples”) from 1611 his “translation from Latin to the real and true Bosnian language” (“A privideh iz dijačkog u pravi i istinit jezik bosanski”)
  • Bosniak poet and Aljamiado writer Muhamed Hevaji Uskufi Bosnevi who refers to the language of his 1632 dictionary Magbuli-arif as Bosnian.
  • One of the first grammarians, the Jesuit clergyman Bartolomeo Cassio calls the language used in his work from 1640 Ritual rimski (Roman Rite) as naški (“our language”) or bosanski (“Bosnian”). He used the term “Bosnian” even though he was born in a Chakavian region: instead he decided to adopt a “common language” (lingua communis) based on a version of Shtokavian Ikavian.
  • The Italian linguist Jacobus Micalia (1601–1654) who states in his dictionary Blagu jezika slovinskoga (Thesaurus lingue Illyricae) from 1649 that he wants to include “the most beautiful words” adding that “of all Illyrian languages the Bosnian is the most beautiful”, and that all Illyrian writers should try to write in that language.
  • 18th century Bosniak chronicler Mula Mustafa Bašeskija who argues in his yearbook of collected Bosnian poems that the “Bosnian language” is much richer than the Arabic, because there are 45 words for the verb “to go” in Bosnian.
  • The Venetian writer, naturalist and cartographer Alberto Fortis (1741–1803) calls in his work Viaggio in Dalmazia (Travels into Dalmatia) the language of Morlachs as Illyrian, Morlach and Bosnian.
  • The Croatian writer and lexicographer Matija Petar Katančić published six volumes of biblical translations in 1831 described as being “transferred from Slavo-Illyrian to the pronunciation of the Bosnian language”.
  • Croatian writer Matija Mažuranić refers in the work Pogled u Bosnu (1842) to the language of Bosnians as Illyrian (a 19th century synonym to South Slavic languages) mixed with Turkish words, with a further statement that they are the speakers of the Bosniak language.
  • The Bosnian Franciscan Ivan Franjo Jukić states in his work Zemljopis i Poviestnica Bosne (1851) that the Bosnia was the only Turkish land (i.e. under the control of the Ottoman Empire) that remained entirely pure without Turkish speakers, both in the villages and so on the highlands. Further he states “[…] a language other than the Bosnian is not spoken [in Bosnia], the greatest Turkish [i.e. Muslim] gentlemen only speak Turkish when they are at the Vizier”.
  • Ivan Kukuljević Sakcinski, a 19th century Croatian writer and historian, stated in his work Putovanje po Bosni (Travels into Bosnia) from 1858, how the ‘Turkish’ (i.e. Muslim) Bosniaks, despite of converting to the Muslim faith, preserved their traditions and the Slavic mood, and that they still today speaks the purest variant of the Bosnian language, only when they refuse to mix the vocabulary with the Turkish words.


The function of "Der Doppelgänger" in Innocent Sin (also: music under the Third Reich)

“Der Doppelgänger” is a poem originally written by the German poet Heinrich Heine. Its text is featured in Persona 2: Innocent Sin in the intro video, and when recited by Maya following the fight with Principal Hanya.

Based on the intro and Maya’s interpretation, the speaker is meant to represent Tatsuya, the lost love Maya, and the doppelgänger Jun. Even without choosing him as a romantic partner, Jun has an intimate enough connection with Tatsuya to be considered his other half, and in the first part of the game he torments the party to remember what they did to Maya. The symbolism doesn’t end there, however. Even in Eternal Punishment, Jun is the most difficult person Tatsuya has to face that reminds him of everything he lost in order to save Maya.

Now, it’s also important to note “Der Doppelgänger” as a poem was also set to music by Austrian composer Franz Schubert. 

As you can see, the chord progression in Schubert’s piece is used in Innocent Sin in both the intro and Maya’s theme at the end of the game. The intro theme even borrows the singer’s first line in the song (compare the part where Eikichi is shown to “Still ist die Nacht, es ruhen die Gassen”). While sheet music of the song exists in different keys, it was originally written in B minor, which is what is used in Innocent Sin and, as a fun fact, is the same key as Aria of the Soul. The exact harmonic analysis is i-V6-i6-V6/4, which basically functions as a means for the bass-line to make chromatic descents, a function in music typically used to represent death (being laid into earth). This is especially significant considering the playing of this theme upon Maya’s death. You can hear as  the theme diverges from Schubert’s piece that chromatic descents are still heavily used in both the melody and the bass line, and continues as far as when Maya’s leitmotif begins.

Schubert’s “Der Doppelgänger” is a lied, a type of Romantic era German music that features a single voice and piano. This is why it is important that music in the Velvet Room was limited to two performers: Belladonna and Nameless, and why I’m critical of Shoji Meguro slapping on his orchestral version of Aria of the Soul in the remakes (along with choosing to do something completely different and use Lotus Juice in the new intro). 

Also, it’s worth noting that the Romantic was spearheaded by increased interest in the supernatural, mythology, and emotional expression, fitting themes for Persona 2 and Megami Tensei lore in general.

It’s clear that “Der Doppelgänger” was selected to be used with all the connections you can make with the shadows and personae as other selves. In addition, doppelgänger’s are heavily present throughout the game that torment the party (the shadow selves, Nyarlathotep’s guises, the Metal parents, the alien versions of the party, Philemon’s unmasking, Maya’s fate sealed by someone with the same name as her). However, due to the Nazis’ presence in the game, we can also look at its inclusion through a historical perspective.

The thing is, Heinrich Heine was absolutely despised by the Nazis. Despite living in a different era, he had radical views that would contradict Nazi ideology and lead to his writings being burned. 

When it came to music, it’s unclear how exactly the Nazis felt about Schubert, however when Jewish musicians became segregated from German canon, historians posit that Schubert’s recurring themes of loss and loneliness were appealing to Jewish audiences. And so, a performance of one of his most poignant lieds, set to a poem by a writer hated by the Nazis, would reflect the kind of grief echoed from The Last Battalion’s presence in Innocent Sin.

And as an aside, Hitler adored Beethoven, whose Sonata Pathetique movement 1: Grave is played by Nameless in the Velvet Room. In contrast, Erik Satie, who wrote Gymnopédie no. 1 (also featured in the Velvet Room), would have been slammed by the Nazis for his more progressive music and his vocal criticism of Beethoven.

“In fact, as the German economic historians Buchheim and Scherner (2006) have recently argued in an intriguing essay, Nazi economics would still today be considered in many regards capitalistically normative, for example, in its emphasis on the value of private, as opposed to state, entrepreneurship and ownership: “Interestingly enough,” they assert (409), this tenet “conforms well to modern economic reasoning.” Nor, according to these researchers from Mannheim, was this an isolated facet. The Nazi administrative elite was in general committed to a liberal economic concept and procedure inherited from the Weimar Republic: “These decrees, originating in the Weimar Republic, were never repealed during the Third Reich and thus placed the more liberally minded bureaucracy of the Reich Ministry of Finance in a strong position”. The fact that this “Weimarian” aspect was not abolished, whereas so many other features of the Republic were violently done away with or trampled under foot was not coincidental, and did not stem, of course, from any excess of legalistic zeal on the part of the Nazis. Rather, it reflected the fundamental and genuine Nazi belief in the economic benefits of allowing business to remain in private hands: “one has to keep in mind that Nazi ideology held entrepreneurship in high regard. Private property was considered a precondition to developing the creativity of members of the German race in the best interest of the people.” Furthermore, there was a conviction “even in the highest ranks of the Nazi elite that private property itself provided important incentives to achieve greater cost consciousness, efficiency gains, and technical progress”

Ishay Landa in “The Apprentice’s Sorcerer: Liberal Tradition and Fascism”

In April 1944, the LSSAH’s Tiger Company was transferred to the SS Heavy Panzer Battalion 101. This battalion was assigned to the I SS Panzer Corps as a corps asset, and was never permanently attached to any division or regiment. By this point, Wittmann was in command of the battalion’s second company and held the rank of SS-Obersturmführer (first lieutenant). On 7 June, following the Allied Invasion of Normandy, the battalion was ordered to move from Beauvais to Normandy. The move, covering roughly 165 kilometres or 103 miles, took five days to complete.

Due to the Anglo-American advance south, from Gold and Omaha Beach, the German 352nd Infantry Division began to buckle. As the division withdrew south, it opened up a 7.5-mile (12.1 km) wide gap in the front line near Caumont-l'Éventé. Sepp Dietrich ordered the Heavy SS-Panzer Battalion 101, his only reserve, to position itself behind the Panzer-Lehr-Division and 12th SS Panzer Division Hitlerjugend. This position would protect the open left flank, which was developing. Anticipating the importance the British would assign to the high ground near Villers-Bocage, Wittmann’s company was positioned near the town. Late on the 12th, Wittmann’s company arrived in the area of Villers-Bocage. Nominally composed of 12 tanks, Wittmann’s company was 50 per cent understrength due to losses and mechanical failures. During the night, the area came under heavy naval artillery fire. Fearing his force had been spotted, Wittman relocated his company three times.

The following morning, the lead elements of the British 7th Armoured Division entered Villers-Bocage. They had been given the objective of exploiting the gap in the front line, seizing Villers-Bocage, and capturing the nearby ridge (Point 213) to attempt to force a German withdrawal. The British arrival surprised Wittmann, as he had not expected them so soon. He later stated:

“I had no time to assemble my company; instead I had to act quickly, as I had to assume that the enemy had already spotted me and would destroy me where I stood. I set off with one tank and passed the order to the others not to retreat a single step but to hold their ground.”

At approximately 09:00 Wittmann’s Tiger emerged from cover onto the main road, Route Nationale 175, and engaged the rearmost British tanks positioned on Point 213, destroying them. Wittmann then moved towards Villers-Bocage engaging several transport vehicles parked along the roadside, the carriers bursting into flames as their fuel tanks were ruptured by machine gun and high explosive fire. Moving into the eastern end of the town he engaged a number of light tanks followed by several medium tanks.[30] Alerted to Wittmann’s actions, light tanks in the middle of the town quickly got off the road while medium tanks were brought forward. Wittmann, meanwhile, had accounted for a further British tank, two artillery observation post (OP) tanks followed by a scout car and a half-track. Accounts differ as to what happened next. Historians record that, following the destruction of the OP tanks, Wittmann briefly dueled without success against a Sherman Firefly before withdrawing. The Tiger is then reported to have continued eastwards to the outskirts of the town before being disabled by an anti-tank gun. Wittmann’s own account, however, contradicts this; he states that his tank was disabled by an anti-tank gun in the town centre. In less than 15 minutes, 13–14 tanks, two anti-tank guns and 13–15 transport vehicles had been destroyed by the Heavy SS-Panzer Battalion 101, the vast majority attributed to Wittmann. Wittmann would however play no further role in the Battle of Villers-Bocage. For his actions during the battle, Wittmann was promoted to SS-Hauptsturmführer (captain) and awarded Swords to his Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross. Several destroyed vehicles line the side of a tree and hedge lined road. A destroyed gun, twisted metal and debris occupy the foreground. The wreckage of the British transport column, and an anti-tank gun, that Wittmann engaged.

Historians and Wittmann’s superiors are generally impressed by his achievements on the day. Historian Stephen Badsey has stated that the ambush Wittmann launched has cast a shadow over the period between D-Day and 13 June in historical accounts. However, German tank commander and historian Wolfgang Schneider is not as impressed. In analyzing Wittmann’s actions at Villers-Bocage, he called into question Wittmann’s tactical ability. Schneider claims “a competent tank company commander does not accumulate so many serious mistakes”. He highlights how Wittmann dispersed his forces in a sunken lane with a broken down tank at the head of the column thereby hampering the mobility of his unit. The solitary advance into Villers-Bocage, was heavily criticized as it breached “all the rules”. No intelligence was gathered, and there was no “centre of gravity” or “concentration of forces” in the attack. Schneider argues that due to Wittmann’s rash actions, “the bulk of the 2nd Company and Mobius 1st Company came up against an enemy who had gone onto the defensive”. He calls Wittman’s “carefree” advance into British-occupied positions “pure folly”, and states that “such over hastiness was uncalled for”. He concludes that, had a properly prepared assault, involving the rest of his company and the 1st Company, been launched far greater results could have been achieved. Finally, Schneider, comments that “thoughtlessness of this kind was to cost [Wittmann] his life … during an attack casually launched in open country with an exposed flank.

Yiddish-speakers themselves, including some of the most prominent Yiddish writers of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, routinely referred to their language as Zhargon – Jargon. It was a bastard tongue, bad German, a linguistic mishmash, hardly a language at all. Jews intent on assimilation found it particularly odious. In Germany for example, Jews tried to reduce Jewishness to a Konfession, a religion divorced from culture, insisting they weren’t Jews at all, but rather “Germans of the Mosaic persuasion” Go make the case in Yiddish, where every word, every linguistic tic, is a reminder of peoplehood. Consider, for example, Max Weinreich’s example of a more or less random Yiddish sentence: Di bobe est tsholent af Shabes – The grandmother eats warmed-over bean stew on the Sabbath. Bobe, “grandmother” is a Slavic word that entered Yiddish in the thirteenth or fourteenth century. Est was adopted a thousand years ago, from Middle High German. Tsholent, bean stew, came from Old French more than a thousand years ago, probably from chaud, “hot”, and lent, “slow” – a fitting name for a dish that Jews keep warm on the Sabbath, when cooking is not allowed. And Shabes, “Sabbath,” is a Hebrew word that dates back several thousand years. Quite literally, Yiddish is a living chronicle of Jews’ historical experience, proof of their peoplehood, and therefore spills the beans on assimilationist aspirations. No wonder Bourgeois Jews hated it; no wonder scholars ignored it. In 1873, for example, the German Jewish historian Heinrich Graetz afforded Yiddish just two paragraphs in his magisterial six-volume History of the Jews. Never mind that Yiddish was then the first or only language of 80% of the world’s Jews; for Graetz, it was “eine halbtierische Sprache,” a half-bestial tongue.

- Outwitting History: The Amazing Adventures of a Man Who Rescued a Million Yiddish Books by Aaron Lansky

The Capitoline Wolf: Etruscan Masterpiece or Medieval Replica?

The Capitoline Wolf, is a nearly life-sized bronze statue of she-wolf suckling two twin infants, inspired by the myth of Romulus and Remus. The she-wolf was regarded as a symbol of Rome during antiquity, and statues are known to have existed in Rome as early as 295 BCE.

The origin and dating of the Capitoline Wolf is a subject of major controversy. It had been long established that twin infants were added to the statue sometime in the late 15th century, but the wolf portion was thought to be much older. In the 18th century, German art historian and archaeologist Johann Joachim Winckelmann attributed the wolf statue to an unknown Etruscan artist in the 5th century BCE, based on the design of the wolf’s fur. The Etruscan attribution of the Capitoline Wolf was universally accepted for over two centuries. 

Although there were a few scholars in the 19th century who questioned the statue’s link to antiquity (believing it to be medieval instead), the date was not seriously challenged until 1997 when the statue was being restored. Conservator Anna Maria Carruba noticed that the she-wolf was cast as a single unit, a technique that was not used in ancient times.  Ancient bronze sculptures were casted from multiple pieces then brazed together. The technique was first used by the ancient Greeks and then adopted by the Etruscans and Romans. Single-piece casting was, however, a technique that was widely used in the Medieval period. In 2007, radiocarbon dating confirmed with an accuracy of 95% that the wolf was cast between 1021 and 1153 CE.

It was long believed that the Capitoline Wolf was the very same statue that the philosopher Cicero mentions as one of the sacred objects of the Capitoline Hill. Taking the new dates into consideration, it is more likely that the statue was cast as a replacement for an earlier (now lost) version, as Roman wolf statues were known to have existed as late as the 9th century CE. Despite the confirmation that the Capitoline Wolf is in fact a medieval creation, it is still taught in many art history and archaeology classes throughout the world as an example of Etruscan sculpture.

The statue is on display at The Capitoline Museums in Rome.

Polyglot Confession Nr. 697:

I dream of wearing shirts with inappropriate sayings in Old English and Old Norse in public, the more obscure the better, mainly because it’d be fun but also because of the chance that maybe three or four linguists, lit students, historians or germanic languages people might pass by, read it, roll their eyes and then snicker to themselves.