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


Fairy-tales; Drama

2 October

Release of Eventyr, fortalte for Børn. Ny Samling. Første Hefte. (Tales, Told For Children. New Collection. First Booklet). This includes "Gaaseurten" (The Daisy), "Den Standhaftige Tinsoldat" (The Steadfast Tin Soldier) and "De vilde Svaner" (The Wild Swans). 2nd edition: 1846.

7 October

Attends a big party given for Thorvaldsen, held at hotel d'Angleterre.

11 October

Writes a song for Thorvaldsen for the Students' Association. Copies of the song are circulated.

1838: Fairy-tales; Drama

14 October

A party is held for Thorvaldsen at the Students' Association, to mark his being made a member there. The poem by HCA is praised by people from all sides, something he is not at all used to. He gets the impression that this poem will be more popular than the successful "Det døende Barn" (The Dying Child). On this matter he writes to Henriette Hanck:

"Voila! One wins the admiration of the world for a paper flower and one is sent to the gallows for planting a scented palm. Oh such people."

[This last comment is likely to be directed at Kierkegaard's taunting of the novel Only a Fiddler].

Mid October

Works on the drama Mulatten (The Mulatto). Comments on this in a letter (4th November) to Henriette Hanck:

"There is no theatre frippery, just human emotions, my "bad blood", and my "noble side", which I am learning to present in supple verse. This piece will decide whether I am to work for the stage or just as a novelist".

Late October

Release of Kun en Spillemand (Only a Fiddler) in Swedish, titled Spelmannen från Svendborg. Part1. Part 2 is released in December. The novel is available in L.J. Hierta's Nytt Läse-Bibliothek, a series of translated novels available at low prices.

Late October - Early November

Is informed that the painter Fritz Petzholdt, with whom HCA had spent time in Rome, has been murdered in Greece. Petzholdt was the brother of Edvard Collin's sister-in-law, Augusta (née Petzholdt, married to Gottlieb Collin). HCA comments on this:

"They say his head was cut off [...] The Collins are very depressed about all this [...] he was highly gifted, a talent, a great painter of landscapes and he was worth 80.000 rdlr.; young and able to enjoy life" [with regard to financial fortune and enjoying life, this of course was everything HCA so bitterly longed for].

4 November

Attends a concert by the violinist Ole Bull. On the same day, HCA describes this event in detail to Henriette Hanck. The description of hearing Bull play is similar to the description given in Only a Fiddler of Christian's godfather, the Norwegian violinist, one year earlier:

"[...] then his violin began to weep, as a child might, it was the cry of a shattered heart that sobs, then my eyes flooded, I was his admirer and always will be [...] In melody the poems of Heine swept about me, this world of shredded images, with deep emotions and sharp irony [...] at times there was a whistling, like small fiery snakes from the violin, then the bow would dance so merrily, it seemed I was at a peasants' wedding, where the devil stood behind the groom, laughing, while the bride shed heavy tears of blood. Oh - what Bull must have suffered in this world, felt and felt again, before all this could flow from his heart and out through the tips of his fingers."

Mid November

First meeting in person with Ole Bull (on the street).HCA immediately goes to Reitzel and gets a beautifully bound copy of Kun en Spillemand (Only a Fiddler) (!), which he gives to Ole Bull with a dedication. HCA is fascinated by the story of Bull's life and finds it in many ways similar to his own fate. Suffering at this time from bouts of gloom and depression, HCA is easily able to relate to the art and life of Bull.

28 November

Release of Den Usynlige paa Sprogø. (The Invisible Man on Sprogø. A Jape. One Act, With Choir and Songs).

1 December

Moves to Hotel du Nord, room 25 (at Kongens Nytorv, on the corner of Vingaardsstræde, now demolished and replaced by the department store Magasin du Nord). HCA now has a living room facing Kongens Nytorv and a bedroom facing the courtyard. Describes the new living quarters to Henriette Hanck (10th December):

"I feel so very comfortable there, that I am amazed at how patient I was with my previous landlady, for the past four years. The service is very good, and when I call, waiters appear, each one blacker than the other, which probably will have a good effect, now that I'm working on The Mulatto".

December: (presumably)

Swedish Release of Improvisatören, in the series Hiertas Läse-Bibliotek.

18 December

Five of HCA's fairy-tales for children are released in Swedish as part of a series of publications titled "Lekkamraten" (The Playmate). Included are "Thumbelina", "Little Claus and Big Claus", "The Travelling Companion", "Little Ida's Flowers" and "The Tinder Box", along with four fairy-tales by Grimm and Musäus. Publisher and translator: J.W. Liffman

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