The Encyclopedia Americana (1920)/Reuter, Fritz
REUTER, roi'tĕr, Fritz, German dialect poet and story writer: b. Stavenhagen, Mecklenburg-Schwerin, 7 Nov. 1810; d. Eisenach, 12 July 1874. He studied law at the universities of Rostock and Jena, and in 1833 was condemned to death at Berlin for his share in a students' democratic society. His sentence was, however, commuted by the king to 30 years' imprisonment. Till 1838 he was a close prisoner in various Prussian fortresses, and after a farther period of confinement in the Mecklenburg fortress of Dömitz was set free in 1840. For 10 years he devoted himself to farming but in 1850 became a private teacher in the Pomeranian town of Treptow. In 1853 he was made famous by the publication of humorous poems in the Platt-Deutsch dialect, entitled ‘Läuschen un Rimels’ (new series, 1858). These were followed by ‘Polterabendgedichte’ (1855) and ‘Reis' nah bellegen’ (1855). His later works comprise ‘Kein Hüsung’ (1858); a tragical village story in verse; ‘Hanne Nüte und de lütte Pudel’ (1859); ‘Schürr-Murr’ (1861), a collection of tales in both Low and High German; and ‘Olle Kamellen’ (1860-68), his chief prose work, a series of tales in Platt-Deutsch, including ‘Ut de Franzosentid’ (1860); ‘Ut mine Festungstid,’ an account of his conviction, and imprisonment (1862); ‘Ut mine Strontid,’ his materpiece (1864); ‘Dörchlauchting’ (1866); and ‘De Reis' nah Konstantinopel’ (1868); ‘Die Drei Langhäuse’ (1878), a satirical play; ‘Lustspiele und Polterabendgedichte’ (1883); and ‘Reuter-Reliquien’ (1885). Reuter's stories are lacking in plot, but are marked by clever episodes, skilful character drawing and a humor, which, despite the difficulty of his medium, was universally appreciated in Germany. An edition of his works appeared in 1863-68, and in 1875 two volumes of ‘Nachgelassene Schriften,’ with biography, were added by Wilbrandt. Consult Ebert, H., ‘Fritz Reuter, sein Leben und seine Werke’ (Güstrow 1874); Gädertz, K. T ‘Aus Fritz Reuters jungen und alten Tagen’ (2d ed., 3 vols., Wismar 1897-1901); Glagau, O., ‘Fritz Reuter und seine Dichtungen’ (2d ed., Berlin 1875); Römer, A., ‘Fritz Reuter in seinem Leben und Schaffen’ (Berlin 1895); Thurber, C. H., ‘Fritz Reuter’ (Boston 1914).