Article Details

In: KulturPoetik 2019, Issue 1


Benjamin Specht


Die Aufhebung des Schwärmers. Zum Wandel eines anthropologischen Konzepts bei Novalis




The widespread anthropological concept of the Schwärmer links many psychological, philosophical, religious and aesthetical ideas of late Enlightenment. As many notions of that period, it is preserved but transformed according to the principles of transcendental philosophy and poetics in Early Romanticism. The article retraces these shifts particularly in the theoretical and literary work of Friedrich von Hardenberg (Novalis). His pre-Romanticist literary remains, which have been neglected by literary studies, contain many references to the contemporary Schwärmer debate. When Hardenberg eventually becomes ›Novalis‹ in the 1790ʼs, he relies on these references as a premise to his concept of ›magical idealism‹ and his literary technique of romantisieren. From this perspective, the idea of the ›romantic poet‹ in his novel Heinrich von Ofterdingen turns out to be a refined version of the Schwärmer.