Collier's New Encyclopedia (1921)/Brandes, Georg

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BRANDES, GEORG (bran'des), a Danish literary critic of Jewish family, born in Copenhagen, Feb. 4, 1842, where he graduated at the university in 1864. Several books on athletic and philosophic subjects brought on him a charge of scepticism, which was not removed by an epoch-making series of lectures, published under the title, “The Great Tendencies of Nineteenth-Century Literature” (1872-1875). His “Danske Digtere,” a masterpiece of psychological analysis, appeared in 1877; but the hostility of his enemies induced him in the same year to leave Denmark, and settle in Berlin, where he published biographies of Lasalle (1877), and Lord Beaconsfield (1879). In 1882 he returned to Copenhagen, his countrymen having guaranteed him an income of 4,000 crowns, with the one stipulation that he should deliver public lectures on literature. His later works include “Den Romantiske Skole i Frankrig” (1882); a biography of Ludvig Holberg (1885), and a valuable study of Shakespeare, published in an English translation in 1899; “Main Currents of 19th Century Literature” (1906).