chapter  Chapter Five
10 Pages


WithS. S. Prawer

As a theoretician and critic of literature, and above all as a dramatist, Schiller (1759-1805) is of unequalled importance: but his place in a history of the German lyric (especially one which excludes the ballad) is not, despite his popularity, an eminent one. Schiller’s most characteristic ‘lyrics’ are but abstract thought clothed in rhetoric. A few remarks on what is generally recognized as Schiller’s greatest poem 1 may indicate both the nature of his achievement and his peculiar limitations.