1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Helmers, Jan Frederik

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20162511911 Encyclopædia Britannica, Volume 13 — Helmers, Jan Frederik

HELMERS, JAN FREDERIK (1767–1813), Dutch poet, was born at Amsterdam on the 7th of March 1767. His early poems, Night (1788) and Socrates (1790), were tame and sentimental, but after 1805 he determined, in company with his brother-in-law, Cornelis Loots (1765–1834), to rouse national feeling by a burst of patriotic poetry. His Poems (2 vols., 1809–1810), but especially his great work The Dutch Nation, a poem in six cantos (1812), created great enthusiasm and enjoyed immense success. Helmers died at Amsterdam on the 26th of February 1813. He owed his success mainly to the integrity of his patriotism and the opportune moment at which he sounded his counterblast to the French oppression. His posthumous poems were collected in 1815.