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1877 Calw - 1962 Montagnola.
«Frau Moilliet zur Weihnacht 1918 (Mrs Moilliet for Christmas 1918)».
Handwritten and typed manuscript respectively typescript of poems with signature and dedication to Marguerite Moilliet, Christmas 1918. Ten typewritten poems on eleven sheets of Ingres paper by Arches (watermark). With eleven watercoloured pen and ink drawings depicting floral still lifes, landscapes, buildings and an interior as well as with handwritten title each. The poems have the following titles: «Auch die Blumen (even the flowers)», «Schicksalstage (days of fate)», «Sommernacht (summer night)», «Landschaft (landscape)», «An die Freunde in schwerer Zeit (to friends in difficult times)», «Wanderung (hike)», «Abends (in the evening)», «Einsamer Abend (lonely evening)», «Bruder Tod (brother death)», «Der Klang (the sound)».
Hermann Hesse, who was in charge of the «Bücherzentrale für deutsche Kriegsgefangene (book centre for German prisoners of war)» at the German Embassy in Bern during and immediately after the end of the First World War, suffered from an acute shortage of money in the winter of 1918/19 and therefore created several poetry manuscripts individually designed with drawings by his own hand, which he sold to «friends and collectors of beautiful books and rarities etc.». In a letter to the painter Cuno Amiet (1868 - 1961), he describes this austere period, which was marked not only by financial worries but also by his wife’s severe nervous condition. In the course of 1919, he found a new home in Ticino in picturesque surroundings.
Scientific perusal: This manuscript was kept for several weeks in the Deutsches Literaturarchiv Marbach for research purposes in the summer of 2008.
Provenance: gift of the author in 1918 to Marguerite Moilliet, sister-in-law of the painter Louis Moilliet (1880 - 1962); by succession transferred into private possession Müllheim.
The Swiss painter and glass painter Louis Moilliet, a protagonist of Orphism, visited Hermann Hesse in Ticino in the summer of 1920, whereupon he became the model for the figure of the painter Louis in Hesse’s story «Klingsors letzter Sommer (Klingsor’s last summer)».