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German Literature:
 The Suabian Poets

 Mid-century Poets

 The Realistic Novelists




 Socialism In Literature

 Contemporary Writers

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The Realistic Novelists

( Originally Published Early 1900's )

As in other literatures, realism came to prevail in Germany after the middle of the Century. Fanciful romanticism could not be content with lower personages than Kings and knights, and sought its subjects in the remote idealized Middle Ages, or in a supernatural world, unvisited except in dreams. But the extravagance of its practitioners caused a reaction which was helped by some of themselves who repented of their early works. Heine confessed that he had once belonged to that school which he mercilessly exposed after he went to France, and declared himself a "disfrocked Romanticist." But there were others who were fortunate enough to be born so late as to escape the epidemic. They were warned in due time and avoided the plague. For them real life has furnished the staple of their works. In the commonplace lives of ordinary people of town and country have been found the possibilities of humor and pathos, and occasionally, as in life itself, grim tragedy may enter.

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