Johann Karl August Museum ( German: Johann Karl August Musäus ; March 29, 1735 , Jena - October 28, 1787 , Weimar ) - German writer, literary critic, philologist and teacher. The author of the collection of literary tales " Folk Tales of the Germans ."
|Johann Carl August Museum|
|him. Johann Karl August Musäus|
|Date of Birth||March 29, 1735|
|Place of Birth||Jena , Duchy of Saxe-Weimar|
|Date of death||October 28, 1787 (52 years old)|
|A place of death||Weimar , Duchy of Saxe-Weimar|
|Citizenship||Holy Roman Empire|
|Occupation||prose writer , poet , literary critic , philologist|
|Genre||satirical novels, literary tales|
|Language of Works||Deutsch|
- 1 Biography
- 1.1 Weimar
- 2 Literary activities
- 2.1 Grandison Second
- 2.2 Physiognomic wanderings
- 2.3 German folk tales
- 3 Bibliography
- 3.1 In Russian
- 4 notes
- 5 Literature
- 6 References
Born in the family of an official Johann Christoph Museus. Parents decided to give Johann a spiritual education. Until the age of 9, the boy lived in Alstedt with his uncle, who raised him on Christian values. Soon, Johann's father was transferred to Eisenach , to the post of land judge, which was followed by uncle and nephew. After graduating from high school, a 19-year-old boy entered the University of Jena , where he studied theology. After completing the course, with a master’s diploma in the free profession, Museus returned to his parental home to devote himself to practical theology.
His sermons resonated with the audience, but the novice pastor was not a strict zealot for spiritual values. He enjoyed participating in frivolous youth games, he loved to dance, did not mind caring for pretty girls, and this, at that time, did not fit in with the role of a noble mentor of lost human souls. The peasants of the Thuringian village of Wut-Farnrod , where he was to become a spiritual pastor, refused to accept him. Not wanting to play the role of a comedian in the church pulpit and, besides, not distinguishing himself with special piety, Museus abandoned the career of a priest and moved to Weimar .
In Weimar, Museus became a teacher at a local gymnasium, while simultaneously engaging in philology and writing.
In 1770, he married Magdalen Julian Krueger. Soon, two sons of the writer, Karl (1772-1831)  and Augustus, were born one after another. A modest teaching salary was not enough, and Museus earned private lessons in wealthy homes or commissioned poetry on the occasion of someone's anniversaries and other special dates.
Later, when writing began to generate higher incomes, Museus was finally able to buy a small piece of land and build on it a small, as he called it, Fairy Castle, where he found everything he could only dream of. The cozy house became a place frequented by the writer's friends, among which were Herder and Goethe , Nikolai , Crown Schroeter , Burger , Knebel and Lafater . But the most welcome guest, with whom he loved to spend long evenings in friendly conversation, was the poet Wieland , a man close to him in spirit, highly educated, witty, and extremely interesting conversationalist.
Having created a number of satirical works, Museus did not limit himself to the role of a literary critic and exposer of the vices of modern society and devoted the last years of his life to the study and literary processing of fairy tales, legends and legends collected by him in various parts of Germany. Museus collected his tales in the houses of artisans or in wretched peasant shacks, and in his hands they soon turned into amazing fairy tales-short stories.
None of these tales is my own work or a work of a foreign author. For many generations, word of mouth, they have been transmitted from great-grandfathers to grandchildren and their descendants. The essence of fairy tales has not changed. The author only allowed himself to transfer the action of these stories, related to an indefinite moment of time, to times and places suitable for their content. In a completely unchanged form, they would have looked worse "  .
“Folk Tales of the Germans” (1782-1786) have literary value that has not lost its significance until today. In Germany, the “Tales” of Museus are invariably successful, as evidenced by the fact that they have withstood many editions. Engravings of the famous folk artist of the 19th century, the engraver and woodcarver Ludwig Richter, also contributed to the popularity of fairy tales.
Museus died in the fall of 1787 , shortly after completing work on fairy tales. He was buried in the Weimar cemetery.
Already in his youth, Museus in the "German society" thoroughly engaged in modern literature. He became closely acquainted with countless German imitations of Samuel Richardson 's English family novel, The Story of Sir Charles Grandison, and decided to oppose their characteristic "miserable sentimentality." In 1760-1762, he published an anonymous three-volume novel “Grandison the Second or the History of Mr. N. in Letters,” which was a parody of both these imitations and similar fashionable virtuous blessed novels.
The novel of the young novice writer was successful both in Germany and throughout Europe and attracted the attention of the Duchess of Saxon-Weimar Anna Amalia . In 1763, she invited Museus to the position of a page hofmeister with a content of 300 thalers per year. Museus joined the circle of Weimar writers who, under the auspices of Anna Amalia, promoted classical literature. He especially became close to Bertukh and Wieland , whom he considered his teacher.
From 1763 to 1766, Museus was a literary critic in the "General German Library" published by Friedrich Nikolai ( German: Allgemeine Deutsche Bibliothek ). This was the time when the Enlightenment was reviving, the direction of which was determined by the Berlin publisher and enlightener writer Nikolai, who had a large circle of reviewers — in total, over the entire existence of the magazine — more than 400 scholars and critics. Museus reviewed about 350 contemporary novels, taking for reference the level of artistic theory of the Enlightenment, reviving the ancient eloquence and rhetoric .
In 1770, Museus became a professor of classical philology and history at the Weimar Gymnasium. Among the students of Museus was his nephew August Kotzebue , who later became a famous writer and playwright.
In 1778, Lafater 's Physiognomic Fragments were released and gained immense popularity. And then Museus wrote his second humorous novel, Physiognomic Wanderings, a mocking criticism of the Lafater book. In his novel, he described a faithful follower of the teachings of Lafater, who at home and in a foreign land suffers one disappointment after another. In this work, Museus disputed the possibility of revealing his moral and spiritual qualities only by facial features, not knowing anything about a person. The novel quickly gained popularity and survived three editions in three years.
German Folk Tales
The tales of Museus will remain on a par with everything that was best and humane in the last quarter of the eighteenth century and that young people can read without harm and, on the contrary, with great benefit to the mind and heart. They will never lose their deserved place.- M.K. Wieland , written in Weimar on June 12, 1803 
In recent years, Museum has been completely absorbed in collecting works of folk art - fairy tales, legends and legends. The result of this work was the publication of a five-volume collection of “German Folk Tales” ( German: Volksmahrchen der Deutschen ). Museus subjected the collected fairy tales to literary processing, which gives reason to attribute them more to the genre of literary tales .
Despite the foreign origin of some fairy tales, such as the Frankish “Roland Squires”, Bohemian “Libusch” and “The Legends of Ryubetsal”, they were so widespread in Central Germany that Museus considered it possible to include them in his collection along with truly German fairy tales . He freely handled the material, giving it a literary sound, a special flavor, built a sophisticated composition and deepened the characters of the characters. Although fairy tales take place in the Middle Ages , fairy-tale characters, whether peasants or artisans, judges or clergy, think and act as contemporaries of the author. The Museo plebeian types were superbly successful. These are efficient, hardworking people, direct and honest, subtly distinguishing justice from injustice, truth from lies  .
Museum in its tales is an educator and educator of the people. He avoids pedantic witticisms or humiliating barbs. For our time, the tales of Museus are not only of historical interest. The combination of folk poetry, folk wisdom and folk humor with elements of enlightenment provide this collection of folk tales with a solid place in the living heritage of German poetry.
The storyteller, I.K. A. Museum, left a deep mark not only in 18th-century German literature. More and more close attention to it is shown by our domestic Pushkinists. V.S. Listov drew attention to a certain similarity that is found when comparing fairy tales (legends) - “Legends of the Rubetsal ” (first legend), “Melexal” and “Faithful Love” at Museum with the poems “ Ruslan and Lyudmila ”, “ Caucasian captive ”,“ Bakhchisarai Fountain ”and“ Stone Guest ”by Pushkin  . The influence of 18th-century German literature on Pushkin’s work is usually limited to mentioning the more famous names in Russia — Goethe, Schiller , Lessing , Herder, Wiland, Klopstock . In contrast to these writers, Museus is not mentioned by Pushkin. Nevertheless, Pushkin, according to Listov, undoubtedly knew about the German storyteller from the “ Letters of a Russian Traveler ” by N. M. Karamzin , who told about his visit to the grave of the writer in Weimar and the Benedictine monastery in Erfurt in 1789, where the hero of one of the Museus legends was buried - Count Ernst von Gleichen . It cannot be argued that the images of this crusader captivated by the Saracens and his Muslim mistress simply migrated from Karamzin letters to Pushkin’s poem “The Bakhchisarai Fountain”, but there are reasons to believe that Pushkin knew the Gleichen odyssey not only from “Letters of a Russian Traveler”. Karamzin was familiar with the works of Museum, but in his letters the history of the valiant crusader is greatly simplified in comparison with the German original. According to Listov, Pushkin’s southern poems are closer to the Museum than to the Letters of a Russian Traveler.
The collection “Folk Tales of the Germans” opens with the author's preface written by him in the form of a letter to David Runkel, in which Museus talks about the significance of folk art in general for literature and about its tales in particular  :
... In folk tales, a world appears before us, created by virtue of the imagination to the extent that the truth allows. The heroes of these tales are different, depending on the time of action, its inherent customs and, above all, mythological representations of otherworldly forces that nourish the imagination of every nation. However, I think that the national character is revealed in them in the same way as in the works of folk craft and art ...
... It would be a mistake to consider that only children need folk tales, and that they should all be adapted to the children's tone of Charles Perrault 's Tales of My Mother Goose. The fact is that the people, as you well know, consist not only of children, but also of adults and in everyday life they speak a different language with the latter than with the former ...
... You would get a correct idea of these fairy tales if you could imagine a storyteller as a musician who leads a rustic melody with a general bass with good instrumental accompaniment ...
Fourteen tales and legends follow:
|Table of Contents (original German name)||Table of contents (in brackets - translation options for headings in various publications)|
|Die Bucher der Chronika der drei Schwestern||Chronicle of the Three Sisters (Forest, Reynald Wunderkind)|
|Rolands Knappen||"Roland's squires"|
|Legenden vom Rubezahl||"Legends of Ryubetsal"|
|Liebestreue||“Faithful love” (“Fidelity of love”)|
|Damon amor||"Demon Cupid" ("Ring")|
|Der geraubte schleier||“The Stolen Veil” (“Swan Pond”, “The Stolen Veil”)|
|Stumme liebe||Silent Love (Silent Love)|
|Ulrich mit dem buhel||Ulrich Krivoy (Opponents)|
|Die Nymphe des Brunnens||“Nymph of the source” (“Nymph of the well”)|
|Der schatzgraber||“Treasure Hunter” (“Treasure Hunter”)|
According to one version, the source of the libretto of “ Swan Lake ” by P. I. Tchaikovsky could be a romantic story from the Museum's fairy tale “Swan Pond” (“The Stolen Veil”)   .
- Grandison der Zweite, oder Geschichte des Herrn von N *** . 1760-1762.
- Das Gärtnermädchen von Vincennes . 1771.
- Physiognomische Reisen . 1778/1779.
- Der deutsche Grandison, auch eine Familiengeschichte . 1781/1782.
- Volksmährchen der Deutschen . 1782-1786.
- Freund Hein's Erzählungen in Holbein's Manier . 1785.
- Straußfedern . 1787.
- Moralische Kinderklapper für Kinder und Nichtkinder . 1794.
- Museus Folk Tales Published by Wiland / Per. with him. You. Polyakova. - M., 1811. - T 1-2.
- I.K. A. Museum. Tales and legends. - Moscow: State Publishing House of Fiction, 1960. - 279 p.
- I.K. A. Museum. Folk tales and legends . - Moscow: Firm ERA, 2005. - 600 p. - ISBN 5-86700-031-1 .
- N. M. Karamzin "Letters of a Russian Traveler" (Reproduced from the publication: Karamzin N. M. Selected works in two volumes. - M.-L., 1964.)
- Museus, Karl Ivanovich // Brockhaus and Efron Encyclopedic Dictionary : in 86 volumes (82 volumes and 4 additional). - SPb. , 1890-1907.
- I.K. A. Museum. “Folk Tales and Legends” / Instead of a Preface
- Foreword by Wieland for the second edition of Museus' Folk Tales
- Preface by the authors of the Aufbau-Verlag publishing house. Berlin, 1962 Marchen und Sagen / Johann Karl August Musaus / Berlin: Aufbau-Verl. 1962
- BC Sheets. German tales of the Museum and the works of A. S. Pushkin // Pushkin and others: Sat. Art. - Novgorod, 1997 .-- pp. 67–72.
- P.E. Weidman Ballet "Swan Lake"
- Elizabeth Surits “Swan Lake” of 1877. To the 125th anniversary of the first ballet production
- August von Kotzebue . "Nachgelassene Schriften des verstorbenen Profersors Musaeus." - Leipzig: Kummer, 1791.