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Stefan George

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Stefan Anton George (July 12, 1868 – December 4, 1933) was a German poet, editor and translator.

George was born in Bingen in Germany. He spent time in Paris, where he was among the writers and artists who attended the Tuesday soireés held by the poet Stéphane Mallarmé. He began to publish poetry in the 1890s. George founded and edited an important literary magazine called “Blätter für die Kunst”. He was also at the center of an influential literary and academic circle known as the “Georgekreis”, which included many of the leading young writers of the day, (e.g., Friedrich Gundolf and Ludwig Klages). In addition to sharing cultural interests, the circle reflected mystical and political themes.

Stefan George died near Locarno in Switzerland. Although identified with an extreme conservatism in politics, George refused honors from the National Socialist regime, and following his death was interred before a delegation from the National Socialist government could attend the ceremony.

George’s poetry is characterized by an aristocratic and remote ethos; his verse is formal in style, lyrical in tone, and often arcane in language, being influenced by Greek classical forms, in revolt against the realist trend in German literature at the time.

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