Keller, Gottfried (1819-1890)

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Gottfried Keller, a Swiss literary figure, one of the most important writers in German literature. His best-known work was probably the novel, Der grüne Heinrich; but his Züricher Novellen were also widely read. One of these titled Ursula, takes the reader into the Reformation in Zürich. Zwingli is engaged in a struggle with the Catholics and Anabaptists. A soldier just returned from the Italian wars attaches himself faithfully to Zwingli. He finds that his sweetheart has become a follower of the fanatical Anabaptists. What the author presents is a caricature. Excesses, some of which occurred in St. Gall, are here ascribed to the Zürich Anabaptists in unpleasant exaggeration. Finally Ursula finds her lover seriously wounded on the battlefield of Kappel, saves him from death, is cured of her madness in the distress of war, and as his wife follows him to his house.


Bender, Elizabeth. "Portrayal of the Swiss Anabaptists in Gottfried Keller's Ursula." Mennonite Quarterly Review 17 (July 1943): 136-150.

Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe: Schneider, 1913-1967: v. II, 479.

Author(s) Christian Neff
Date Published 1957

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Neff, Christian. "Keller, Gottfried (1819-1890)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1957. Web. 21 Jan 2021.,_Gottfried_(1819-1890)&oldid=144221.

APA style

Neff, Christian. (1957). Keller, Gottfried (1819-1890). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 21 January 2021, from,_Gottfried_(1819-1890)&oldid=144221.


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 3, p. 162. All rights reserved.

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