The Works of Frederick Schiller, Early Dramas and Romances: The Robbers, Fiesco, Love and Intrigue, Demetrius, the Ghost-Seer, and the Sport of Destiny

By Henry G. Bohn; Friedrich Schiller | Go to book overview

PREFACE

BY THE PUBLISHER.

THE present volume, which forms the fourth of the series, comprises the three earliest of Schiller's dramas, the Robbers, Fiesco, and Love and Intrigue, and his latest, Demetrius, which, unfortunately, is little more than a fragment, the author not having lived to finish it. To these is added the Ghost-Seer, now for the first time given to the English public as Schiller wrote it.

The ROBBERS is more strongly associated with the name and fame of Schiller than any other of his works, and is undoubtedly a very extraordinary production. "A strange, rugged, fiery melodrame, which seemed destined to announce and to animate the revolution of a world." "One sweeping, uncompromising defiance of the sober properties, in which the mature see decorum, and the young dissimulation."*

The germ of much of Schiller's after poetry may be traced in this early performance, and as an example of impassioned and vigorous diction, it is quite unsurpassed. "In perusing this play," says Mr. Carlyle, "we are alternately shocked and inspired; there is a perpetual conflict between our understanding and our feelings. Yet the latter on the whole come off victorious. The Robbers is a tragedy that will long find readers to astonish, and, with all its faults, to move. It stands, in our imagination, like some ancient rugged pile of a barbarous age; irregular, fantastic, useless; but grand in its height and massiveness, and black frowning strength. It will long

____________________
*
Bulwer.

-v-

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