From the Hans Christian Andersen biography "The Life of Hans Christian Andersen. Day By Day", written by DPhil Johan de Mylius:


From Munich and Home

1834: From Munich and Home

1 April

Departure from Rome. Via Florence, Bologna, Padova to Venice (where he remains from 20th - 22nd April). HCA sums up his impressions of Italy in a letter to Signe Læssøe, written 8th April in Florence:

"The heart could dream here, when icy storms remain in the North. Here, the sea is like a sky for a god, the clouds are a fantasy of colours, the air is the nectar of gods, grapes are ripened by the earth, pictures smile from the walls of houses, towns wake from the dead, one lives in the distant past, accompanied by the present, and every marble god is a volva [clairvoyant woman in Norse mythology], heralding the fate of the future. Here is the home of imagination; the North is of course the home of reason; but as I really am a visionary, I only feel at home in my true native land. I have an unspeakable fear of being in Copenhagen again, I can foresee everything and know how I will react; I am no longer the child I was. But the writing is on the wall and I must, after all, fulfil my destiny".

In the same letter, HCA mentions the futility of worrying about affairs of the heart:

"After all, you of course know that I am not a handsome man, and shall always be poor, and these are matters of concern to any person, no matter who their heart longs for, and that is sensible enough".

HCA continues on this subject, relating it to a mixture of aesthetics and personal life:

"Ørsted says that his and my aesthetics are very different; while I grasp at the dissonance of the world, he feels the poet should seek harmony; but I am almost sure that I myself am a part of the world's dissonance; I have shed too many tears of heartache to feel harmony or achieve that which I strove for. You probably do not understand, but I dare not speak more frankly".

Further via Padova and Verona to Trient. Via Brenner to Innsbruck and from here to Munich.

1st - 31st May

In Munich.

7 May

Visits Schelling, the philosopher, (the instigator of the romantic movement's philosophy of nature, concerning the spirit as conscious nature and nature as an unconscious spirit. This philosophy is, in various ways, taken over by Steffens and Ørsted, and is also influential in HCA's fairy-tale "The Little Mermaid" ("Den lille Havfrue")).

31 May

From Munich, via Salzburg and Linz to Vienna.

10th June - 8th July

In Vienna.

20th, 23rd, and 26th July

Visits Castelli, the poet:

"He is undoubtedly the model of a true Viennese. All the fine, distinctive characteristics of these people are found in him: good natured, a pleasant sense of humour, loyal and devoted to his Emperor".

27 June

Visits the poet Grillparzer.

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