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Scherr, Johannes

SCHERR, JOHANNES (1817-1886), German man of letters and novelist, was born at Hohenrechberg in the kingdom of Wurttemberg on the 3rd of October 1817. After studying philosophy and history at the university of Tubingen (1837-1840), he became master in a school conducted by his brother Thomas in Winterthur. In 1843 he removed to Stuttgart, and, entering the political arena with a pamphlet Wilrttembcrg im Jahr 1843, was elected in 1848 a member of the Wiirttemberg House of Deputies; became leader of the democratic party in south Germany and, in consequence of his agitation for parliamentary reform in 1849, was obliged to take refuge in Switzerland to avoid arrest. Condemned in contumaciam to fifteen years' hard labour, he established himself in Zurich as Privatdozent in 1850, but removed in 1852 to Winterthur. In 1860 he was appointed professor of history and Helvetian literature at the Polytechnicum in Zurich, in which city he died on the 21st of November 1886.

Scherr was a voluminous writer in the field of historical investigation into the civilization, literature, and manners and customs of his country. His works have largely a political bias, but are characterized by clearness of exposition and careful research. Noteworthy among his books are the following: Geschichte der deutschen Kultur und Sitte (1852-1853, new ed. 1897); Schiller und seine Zeit (1859, new ed. 1876); Gesfhichte der deutschen Frauenwelt (1860, 4th ed. 1879); AUgemeine Geschichte der Literaiur (1851, 9th ed. 1895-1896); Geschichte der englischen Literatur (1854, 2nd ed. 1883); Blucher, seine Zeit und sein Leben (1862, 4th ed. 1887). Scherr also wrote the humorous Sommertagebuch des wetland Dr Gastrosophiae, Jeremia Sauerampfer (1873); as a novelist he published the historical novels, Schiller (1856), and Michel, Geschichte eines Deutschen unserer Zeit (1858) which have passed through several editions.

With the exception of some of his stories (Novellenbuch, 10 yols. 1873-1877) Scherr's works have not appeared in a collected edition.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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