chapter  Chapter 10
11 Pages

The Move to Göttingen

1850–1856
ByRuth Michaelis-Jena

The Christmas days of 1829 were joyless, spent in an almost empty house, with ‘all the usual order gone’. Through Professor Benecke’s kindness the brothers found the stoves lit in their temporary lodgings, and some furniture placed in position. The reactionary King Charles had to flee to make room for his portly Orleans cousin, Louis-Philippe, the Roi-Citoyen. Jacob was disturbed by the political turmoil, and his love of freedom offended by the strong measures taken to hold down subversive – demagogic – elements. Independent thinking, which after the Wars of Liberation had entered the stuffy atmosphere of the German middle class, took a severe blow. A series of lectures on Anglo-Saxon themes, at Cambridge, and the edition of the Poem of Beowulf, in 1833, established Kemble’s reputation in England. Kemble’s warm friendship for the Grimms was reciprocated, and lasted for many years.