L.H. Nicolay (1737–1820) and his Contemporaries: Diderot, Rousseau, Voltaire, Gluck, Metastasio, Galiani, D’Escherny, Gessner, Bodmer, Lavater, Wieland, Frederick II, Falconet, W. Robertson, Paul I, Cagliostro, Gellert, Winckelmann, Poinsinet, Lloyd, Sanchez, Masson, and others
Springer Science & Business Media, 6 déc. 2012 - 207 pages
Ludwig Heinrich von Nicolay (1737-1820) is virtually unknown in our time. Yet at the close of the eighteenth century he enjoyed a considerable reputation as a German poet of the French neo-classical orientation. He was esteemed as tutor to the Russian Emperor Paul I, as Russian State Counciller, and as President of the Russian Imperial Academy of Sciences. Moreover he was a friend of the most prominent eighteenth century minds that left their imprints on modern thought. As such a man, Nicolay may be studied from several points of view, as a writer, as an educator and as an intellectual. My first preoccupation with Nicolay was of a literary natur- which resulted in a doctoral dissertation presented to the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor (1960), under the title "Ludwig Heinrich von Nicolay (1737-1820) as an exponent of neo-classicism. " The existence of the Nicolay archives, now in the possession of the Countess von der Pahlen in Helsinki, was not known to me at the time. Having later gained access to the same, I discovered a vast amount of un pub lished documents and a treasury of correspondence with the leading intellectuals of the eighteenth and the beginning of the nineteenth centuries. Much of this material was to be published in conjunction with the late Count N. von der Pahlen, who unexpectedly and unfortu nately died in 1963.
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