Philosophical Writings

Edited and translated by Margaret Mahony Stoljar

Subjects: Romanticism
Paperback : 9780791432723, 206 pages, February 1997
Hardcover : 9780791432716, 206 pages, March 1997

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Table of contents




1. Miscellaneous Observations

2. Logological Fragments I

3. Logological Fragments II

4. Monologue

5. Faith and Love or The King and Queen

6. Teplitz Fragments

7. On Goethe

8. General Draft

9. Christendom or Europe

10. Last Fragments


Select Bibliography


This first scholarly edition in English of the philosophical writings of Novalis (Friedrich von Hardenberg), the German Romantic poet, philosopher, and mining engineer, includes two collections of fragments published in 1798, Miscellaneous Observations and Faith and Love, the controversial essay Christendom or Europe, and substantial selections from his unpublished notebooks.


Novalis: Philosophical Writings is the first extensive scholarly translation in English from the philosophical work of the late eighteenth-century German Romantic writer Novalis (Friedrich von Hardenberg). His original and innovative thought explores many questions that are current today, such as truth and objectivity, reason and the imagination, language and mind, and revolution and the state.

The translation includes two collections of fragments published by Novalis in 1798, Miscellaneous Observations and Faith and Love, and the controversial essay Christendom or Europe. In addition there are substantial selections from his unpublished notebooks, including Logological Fragments, the General Draft for an encyclopedia, the Monologue on language, and the essay on Goethe as scientist.

Margaret Mahony Stoljar is Reader in German at the Australian National University. She is the author of Athenaeum. A Critical Commentary; Poetry and Song in Late Eighteenth Century Germany. A Study in the Musical Sturm und Drang; and translator of Under the Night's Edge. A Selection of Poetry and Prose by Johannes Bobrowski.


"A reliable, faithful, and readable English translation of Novalis's influential philosophical and aesthetic writings has been a conspicuous desideratum in Anglo-Saxon scholarship on German Romanticism. Stoljar's book fills this gap in every respect and is, therefore, most welcome and timely. The translation is impeccable and reflects the often highly complex original texts most felicitously. Stoljar's introduction is a model of sound and up-to-date critical scholarship: it provides circumspect exposure to Novalis as an independent and imaginative thinker, situates and characterizes the individual texts in the overall context of Novalis's conceptual universe, and abounds in clearly formulated interpretive insights.

"In Stoljar's lucid translation, Novalis's writings come across as fascinating and seminal as they are in the German original; the collection is a veritable eye-opener for anyone concerned with the wide-ranging impact of the best of German Romantic thought on subsequent developments in European literature, philosophy, history, science, psychology, music, the visual arts, etc. , in other words, across the entire cultural landscape through the nineteenth century to the present. " — Steven Paul Scher, Dartmouth College