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Johann Christoph Friedrich von Schiller

Schiller, Johann Christoph Friedrich von (1759–1805), German playwright, poet, writer on philosophy, history, and aesthetics. Schiller's highly successful early plays, including The Robbers (1781) and Don Carlos (1787), articulated his violent opposition to tyranny. In Weimar he became professor at the Univ. of Jena (1789) and married writer Charlotte von Lengefeld. At this time he also began his important friendship with Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, with whom he shared many values and ideas. In 1787 Schiller began writing historical works, as well as works on philosophy and aesthetics, heavily influenced by Emmanuel Kant. He and Goethe also edited the literary magazines Horen and Musenalmanach. Some of his most important works were historical dramas, including Wallenstein (1798–99), Mary Stuart (1800), and William Tell (1804). He also translated works of Shakespeare and Racine. Schiller is acknowledged to be a leading figure of German literature, second only to Goethe. Beethoven used Schiller's poem “Ode to Joy” (1785) as the text for the final movement of his Ninth Symphony.

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