Women Intellectuals of 18th Century Germany

While much of German intellectual life in the 18th century was driven by the university (and the men who held academic positions there), women contributed in a number of crucial ways to the contemporary intellectual culture. While some exercised an indirect influence through the organization of the popular literary salons, a number were able to establish themselves as important scholars, translators, and popularizers, some through drawing on their connections to prominent male relations, and still others actively sought to break down the barriers facing women in academia. Though they are largely excluded from the Enlightenment canon, and suffer from a lack of attention even in comparison with their French and British counterparts (with few of their works translated into English), the works catalogued in this database are certainly deserving of wider philosophical consideration, as indeed the history of 18th century Germany thought cannot be told without acknowledging the key roles that these women played.

I am grateful to Brian Bradley Ohlman for his work on constructing this archive, and to Falk Wunderlich for his assistance in compiling the names for the catalogue. I am also grateful to the Universitäts- und Landesbibliothek Sachsen Anhalt for their assistance in digitizing texts. For suggestions, additions, or comments on this database, please contact Corey W. Dyck.

Albrecht, Sophie (1757-1840)

Source: Wikipedia

As a writer, Sophie Albrecht (December 1757, Erfurt - 16 November 1840, Hamburg) composed poetry, novels, and essays. As an actress, she performed the leading roles in a number of plays by Friedrich Schiller, who was a friend. Albrecht was married to Johann Friedrich Ernst Albrecht, the physician and writer.

    Further reading
    • Dawson, Ruth P. The Contested Quill: Literature by Women in Germany, 1770-1800. University of Delaware Press, 2002.
    • "Johanne Sophie Dorothea Albrecht." In: Wilson, Katharina M. An Encyclopedia of Continental Women Writers. Vol. 1. Taylor & Francis, 1991. 19-20.
    • Dawson, Ruth P. "Reconstructing Women's Literary Relationships: Sophie Albrecht and Female Friendship." In: In the Shadow of Olympus: German Women Writers Around 1800. Eds. Katherine Goodman and Edith Waldstein. Albany: SUNY Press, 1992. 173-188.

Baldinger, Dorothea Friedrica (1739-1786)

Dorothea Friedrica Baldinger (née Gutbier; 9 September 1739, Großengottern - 1786, Kassel) is remembered for her insightful autobiography which was published posthumously. As the preface to the work (by Sophie von La Roche) attests, Dorothea was naturally gifted, having little in the way of resources to foster her intellectual development--("Die Geschichte ihres Verstandes zeigt, wie viel auf die Anlage ankommt, indem die wenigen Hülfsmittel, welche die Umstände ihr darboten, hinreichten, sie zu Größe und Stärke des Geistes zu leiten"). Dorothea's father died before she knew him. Dorothea's mother, described by her as virtuous yet entirely undistinguished intellectually, became broke and had nothing with which to raise her. As a result of her situation, Dorothea received attention (perhaps pity) from her father's sister, although the woman could not do much to foster Dorothea's education (partially due to her own lack of development). The aunt, and her "tasteless" doctor husband, had a decidedly low-grade assortment of reading material, which included investigations into the paranormal, yet Dorothea was also able to obtain through them intellectual newspapers from Göttingen, which fascinated her. She read the articles and followed the social notes, wanting deeply to be a part of learned life, though she was frustrated by an awareness that her sex was a limitation. Since she had no access to scholarly books, she improved her literacy by reading the Bible. In 1764, Dorothea married Ernst Gottfried Baldinger, a Prussian military doctor. The family moved to Jena when he was made chair of medicine at the university in 1784, and then to Göttingen in 1773 when he became principal of the university hospital. Some time before 1782, Baldinger wrote the Lebensbescreibung, which describes her childhood and education. She corresponded with Sophie von La Roche who published Baldinger's autobiography in 1791.

    Primary
    • Schreiben an die Herausgeber des Magazins (1782)
      • Magazin für Frauenzimmer, Jahrgang 1 (1782), Band 2, 825ff.
    • Über das alte Schloß Pless (*), bei Göttingen. Ein Brief vin Madame *** an H. K. in C (1782)
      • Magazin für Frauenzimmer, Jahrgang 2 (1782), Band 1, 179-186.
    • Ermahnungen einer Mutter, an ihre Tochter. Am Confirmationstage (1783)
      • Magazin für Frauenzimmer, Jahrgang 2 (1783), Band 2, 99-103.
    • Lebensbeschreibung von Frederika Baldinger von ihr selbst verfaßt (Offenbach: Weiß u. Brede, 1791)
      • Reprinted in: "Ich wünschte so gar gelehrt zu werden." Drei Autobiographien von Frauen des 18. Jahrhunderts. Göttingen: Wallstein Verlag, 1994.
    Correspondence
    • Letters to Abraham Gotthelf Kästner
      • Cod. Ms. philos. 166:149. Staats- und Universitätsbibliotek, Göttingen.
    • Letters to Sophie La Roche
      • 31 January 1786, 16 May 1783, 23 November 1785. La Roche 56/I,4,16. Goethe- und Schiller-Archiv, Weimar.
    • Letters
      • Magazin für Frauenzimmer. Strassburg 1783, 1: 179-186, and 2: 99-103.
    Further reading
    • Dawson, Ruth P. The Contested Quill: Literature by Women in Germany, 1770-1800. University of Delaware Press, 2002.
    • "Baldinger, Dorothea Friedrica." In: The Dictionary of Eighteenth-Century German Philosophers. Vol. 1. Eds. Heiner F. Klemme and Manfred Kuehn. Continuum, 2010. 49.

Bandemer, Susanne von (1751-1828)

Source: Neue vermischte Gedichte (Berlin, 1802)

Susanne von Bandemer (2 March 1751, Berlin - 30 December 1828, Koblenz) wrote plays, poems and novels. Her 1798 novel Klara von Bourg is considered one of the most significant treatments of Jean-Jacques Rousseau's thought written in German during the period. She was the niece of Benjamin Franklin and friend of Johann Gottfried Herder, Christoph Martin Wieland, and Karl Wilhelm Ramler.

    Further reading
    • "Bandemer, Susanne von." In: The Dictionary of Eighteenth-Century German Philosophers. Vol. 1. Eds. Heiner F. Klemme and Manfred Kuehn. Continuum, 2010. 50-1.
    • Chlewicka, Katarzyna. 'Uns ist die Kunst nur schöner Zeitvertreib'. Leben und Schaffen Susanne von Bandemers (1751-1828). Der Andere Verlag, 2010.

Clodius, Julie (née Stölzel) (1755-1805)

Source: Wikipedia

Julie Clodius helped edit the posthumous works of her husband, Christian August Clodius, the poet and philosopher. In addition to translating poetry, she wrote poetry of her own, as well as the novel Eduard Montrefrevil. She educated her son, Christian August Heinrich Clodius, who would become a poet and philosopy professor.

    Primary
    • Eduard Montrefrevil (1806)
    Translated
    • Gedichte von Elisa Carter und Charlotte Smith (1784)
    Further reading
    • "Christian August Clodius." In: The Dictionary of Eighteenth-Century German Philosophers. Vol. 1. Eds. Heiner F. Klemme and Manfred Kuehn. Continuum, 2010. 206-7.

Cochois, Babette (1725-1780)

Portrait by Antoine Pesne, 1750.

Source: Wikipedia

Babette Cochois was a French actress. She made her debut at the Berlin Opera in 1743. Later, she collaborated with her husband, Jean-Baptiste de Boyer Argens (married 1749), penning philosophical essays and a novel. Babette was the sister of actress Marianne Cochois.

    Further reading
    • "Argens, Jean-Baptiste de Boyer." In: The Dictionary of Eighteenth-Century German Philosophers. Vol. 1. Eds. Heiner F. Klemme and Manfred Kuehn. Continuum, 2010. 32-4.

Ehrmann, Marianne (1755-1795)

Marianne Ehrmann (née Brentano-Corti; 25 November 1755 - 14 August 1795) was born in Rapperswil, Switzerland. In 1770, Marianne's mother died. Shortly after the family moved to Wurzach, Germany. Not long after 1775, however, both Marianne's father and her only surviving sister had also passed. At this time, Marianne went to stay with her uncle, Dominic von Brentano, who was chaplain at the Imperial Abbey of Kempten. The priest offered Marianne significant support, especially in her recovery after a short but abusive marriage that left her physically and psychologically devastated. Some years later, Marianne joined an acting troupe and toured Europe, under the name Madame Sternheim, with several theater companies. Around this time, her first books (including Philosophie eines Weibes, which was a success) were published anonymously. While staying in Strasbourg, Marianne met the junior lawyer Theophil Friedrich Ehrmann. Seven years his elder, Marianne secretly wed Ehrmann, who lived with his parents, and for a year the married couple met only at night. Marianne was co-editor of a journal published by her husband, Der Beobachter.

    Further reading
    • Dawson, Ruth P. The Contested Quill: Literature by Women in Germany, 1770-1800. University of Delaware Press, 2002.
    • "Marianne Ehrmann." In: Wilson, Katharina M. An Encyclopedia of Continental Women Writers. Vol. 1. Taylor & Francis, 1991. 364-5.
    • Holden, Anca L. "Marianne Ehrmann's Ein Weib ein Wort -- A Platform for Moral Education." In: Challenging Separate Spheres: Female Bildung in Eighteenth- and Nineteenth-Century Germany. Noth American Studies in 19th-Century German Literature, Vol. 40. Ed. Marjanne E. Goozé. Bern: Peter Lang, 2007. 33-50.
    • Kirsten, Britt-Angela. Marianne Ehrmann: Publizistin und Herausgeberin in ausgehenden 18. Jahrhundert. Deutscher Universitäts-Verlag, 1997.
    • Stipa, Helga Madland. Marianne Ehrmann. Reason and Emotion in Her Life and Works. Peter Lang, 1998.

Engelhard, Philippine (née Gatterer) (1756-1831)

Source: Wikipedia

Philippine Engelhard (21 October 1756, Nuremburg - 28 September 1831, Blankenburg im Harz) was a poet.

    Translated
    • Pierre-Jean de Béranger: Lieder. Nach dem Französischen treu übersetzt von Philippine Engelhard geborene Gatterer (Cassel, 1830)
    Further reading
    • Dawson, Ruth P. The Contested Quill: Literature by Women in Germany, 1770-1800. University of Delaware Press, 2002.
    • "Philippine Engelhard." In: Wilson, Katharina M. An Encyclopedia of Continental Women Writers. Vol. 1. Taylor & Francis, 1991. 378-9.

Erxleben, Dorothea Christiane (née Leporin) (1715-1762)

Source: Wikipedia

As a child, Dorothea Christiane Erxleben (13 November 1715, Quedlinburg – 13 June 1762, Quedlinburg) was educated by her physician father, Christian Polykarp Leporin, alongside her older brother. As a teenager, Erxleben was personally tutored by the rector of the local Gymnasium, since it did not admit girls. Dorothea's father allowed her to assist him in treating his patients. Around this time, she began to think seriously about the barriers to formal education encountered by females and wrote Gründliche Untersuchung der Ursachen, die das weibliche Geschlecht vom Studieren abhalten. The book, which systematically addresses the justifications for preventing women from studying, was published in 1742. Although Dorothea had been granted permission to matriculate by Frederick II in 1741, she delayed studying and married Johann Christian Erxleben. During this time she continued assisting her father's medical practice, and saw patients even after his death in 1747. An official complaint by the local doctors, however, made it plain that Dorothea would not be allowed to continue without a doctorate. In 1754, Dorothea Christiane Erxleben became the first woman in Germany to obtain a doctorate, submitting her dissertation, Academische Abhandlung von der gar zu geschwinden und angenehmen, aber deswegen oefters unsicheren Heilung der Krankheiten.

    Further reading
    • "Erxleben, Dorothea Christiane." In: The Dictionary of Eighteenth-Century German Philosophers. Vol. 1. Eds. Heiner F. Klemme and Manfred Kuehn. Continuum, 2010. 287-9.
    • O'Neill, Eileen. “Disappearing Ink: Early Modern Women Philosophers and Their Fate in History." In: Philosophy in a Feminist Voice. Ed. Janet A. Kourany. Princeton UP, 1998. 17-62.

Forkel-Liebeskind, Meta (1765-1853)

Meta Forkel-Liebeskind (22 February 1765, Göttingen - 1853, Eichstätt) was a writer and translator. Her father was the Göttingen pastor and professor Rudolph Wedekind.

Gallitzin, Amalia Fürstin von (1748-1806)

Source: Wikipedia

Amalia Fürstin von Gallitzin (28 August 1748, Berlin, - 27 April 1806, Münster) was the daughter of Count Samuel von Schmettau (Prussian general and curator of the Akademie der Wissenschaften) but following his death, when she was three, she ended up at a Catholic monastery in Breslau where she received only a basic education. As a lady of the Prussian court, she met and married, in 1768, the Russian ambassador in Paris, Prince Dimitrij Aleksejewitsch Golizyn. Amalie met and was influenced by Voltaire and Denis Diderot, friends of the prince--the latter spent three months in their home at The Hague. In 1775, she retreated to a property near Scheveningen in order to educate her two children and study philosophy. Around this time, Dutch philosopher Franz Hemsterhuis introduced Amalie to the philosophy of Plato. She followed Jean-Jacques Rousseau in the intellectual and physical education of her children, and took them to Münster in 1779 after learning about innovations in education by Franz Friedrich Wilhelm Freiherr von Fürstenberg (founder of the University of Münster). Amalia became friends with the Catholic Fürstenberg and eventually converted to Catholicism. The pair formed an intellectual circle in Münster, called the "sacra familia" by others because of its Catholic orientation. Other members included Friedrich Leopold Graf von Stolberg, as well as Kaspar Max and Clemens August Droste zu Vischering. In 1785, Amalia visited Johann Wolfgang von Goethe in Weimar; years later, Goethe returned the favour and visited Münster. Goethe references Amalia glowingly in a 1785 letter to Jacobi, and again in his Campagne in Frankreich. Amalia corresponded with many important thinkers of the period, including Friedrich Heinrich Jacobi, Goethe, Johann Gottfried Herder, Johann Kaspar Lavater, Matthias Claudius and Johann Georg Hamann.

    Further reading
    • "Gallitzin, Amalia Fürstin" In: The Dictionary of Eighteenth-Century German Philosophers. Vol. 1. Eds. Heiner F. Klemme and Manfred Kuehn. Continuum, 2010. 369-71.

Gottsched, Luise Adelgunde Viktorie (1713-1762)

Portrait by Anton Graff, 1792

Source: Wikipedia

As a child, Luise Adelgunde Viktorie Gottsched(née Kulmus; 11 April 1713, Danzig - 26 June 1762, Leipzig) was well-educated in a variety of subjects. As a teenager, she corresponded with Johann Christoph Gottsched and eventually married him years later. In Leipzig, she learned Greek and Latin and followed her husband's lectures at the university from the next room. Together, the Gottscheds promoted German literary culture. Luise, in particular, contributed significantly through her many translations and original works for the stage. Additionally, her translations of Bayle (Dictionnaire historique et critique) and Leibniz (Essais de Théodicée) had an imporantant impact.

    Correspondence
    • Briefe der Frau Louise Adelgunde Victorie Gottsched geboren Kulmus (1771-76)
    • Louise Gottsched − ‘mit der Feder in der Hand.’ Briefe aus den Jahren 1730–1762, ed. Inka Kording (Darmstadt, 1999)
    Further reading
    • "Luise Adelgunde Victoria Gottsched." In: Wilson, Katharina M. An Encyclopedia of Continental Women Writers. Vol. 1. Taylor & Francis, 1991. 476-8.
    • "Gottsched, Luise Adelgunde Viktorie." In: The Dictionary of Eighteenth-Century German Philosophers. Vol. 1. Eds. Heiner F. Klemme and Manfred Kuehn. Continuum, 2010. 426.

Holst, Amalia (1764-1847)

Amalia Holst (née von Justi; 10 February 1758, Altona - 6 January 1829, Groß-Timkenberg) was a writer and intellectual especially interested in pedagogy. She married Johann Ludolf Holst, director of a Pedagogical Institute in Hamburg-St Georg, and Amalia became headmistress of several schools. Her essay, Bemerkungen ueber die Fehler unserer modernen Erziehung, von einer praktischen Erzieherin, published anonymously, claims that Johann Bernhard Basedow and Joachim Heinrich Campe had misunderstood Rousseau's theory of education. In Über die Bestimmung des Weibes zur höhern Geistesbildung, Amalia argued for equality between spouses in marriage.

    Further reading
    • "Holst, Amalia." In: The Dictionary of Eighteenth-Century German Philosophers. Vol. 2. Eds. Heiner F. Klemme and Manfred Kuehn. Continuum, 2010. 544-6.
    • Sotiropoulos, Carol Strauss. Early Feminists and the Education Debates: England, France, Germany 1760-1810. Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 2007.

Huber, Therese (1764-1829)

Therese Huber (née Heyne; 7 May 1764, Göttingen – 15 June 1829, Augsberg) wrote novels and travel reports. She was unhappily married to her first husband, the traveller and ethnologist Georg Forster, from 1785 until his death around 1792, at which time she married her lover, Ludwig Ferdinand Huber. Therese edited the works of both husbands, and served as editor and translator of the journal Morgenblatt für gebildete Stände, to which she also contributed essays. Her novel Abentheuer auf einer Reise nach Neu-Holland is the first to include Norfolk Island as a setting. Georg Forster was among the island's discoverers in 1774, and Therese incorporates Forster's first-hand description of it, recorded in his Reise um die Welt.

    Further reading
    • "Therese Huber." In: Wilson, Katharina M. An Encyclopedia of Continental Women Writers. Vol. 1. Taylor & Francis, 1991. 573-4.
    • Blackwell, Jeannine. "Marriage by the Book: Matrimony, Divorce, and Single Life in Therese Huber's Life and Works." In: In the Shadow of Olympus: German Women Writers Around 1800. Eds. Katherine Goodman and Edith Waldstein. Albany: SUNY Press, 1992. 137-156.

La Roche, Sophie von (1730–1807)

Source: Wikipedia

Sophie von La Roche (née Gutermann von Gutershofen; 6 December 1730, Kraufbeuren – 18 February 1807, Offenbach am Main) was a German novelist and publisher. Although she was engaged to Christoph Martin Wieland, in 1753 Sophie married Georg La Roche, the illegitimate son of Count Friedrich von Stadion-Warthausen and a dancer. The couple had eight children; five survived childhood. La Roche wrote her first novel, Geschichte des Fräuleins von Sternheim, while her husband was supervisor of the Count's country estate in Bönningheim. The book was published in 1771, the same year Georg became privy councillor of the Electoral Archbishop of Trier, at which time the family relocated to Ehrenbreitstein. The literary salon held in their home there (Koblenz) is referred to by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe in his Dichtung und Wahrheit, and was frequented by the likes of Johann Bernhard Basedow, Wilhelm Heinse, Friedrich Heinrich and Johann Georg Jacobi, as well as Johann Kaspar Lavater. The salon terminated when Georg's criticism of the church caused him to be removed from his office and the family moved to Speyer. Sophie was widowed in 1788. When her widow's pension was ended by French occupation in 1794, she relied on writing. La Roche was in correspondence with Dorothea Friedrica Baldinger and published her Lebensbeschreibung, with a preface of her own.

    Further reading
    • Milch, Werner. Sophie La Roche: Die Großmutter der Brentanos. Frankfurt: Societäts-Verlag, 1935.
    • Dawson, Ruth P. The Contested Quill: Literature by Women in Germany, 1770-1800. University of Delaware Press, 2002.
    • Watt, Helga Schutte. "Memories and Fantasies: Sophie La Roche's Herbsttage." In: Challenging Separate Spheres: Female Bildung in Eighteenth- and Nineteenth-Century Germany. Noth American Studies in 19th-Century German Literature, Vol. 40. Ed. Marjanne E. Goozé. Bern: Peter Lang, 2007. 51-72.

Mereau, Sophie (née Schubart) (1770-1806)

Source: Wikipedia

Sophie Mereau (27 March 1770, Altenburg – 31 October 1806, Heidelberg) was the first woman published in Friedrich Schiller's journal Die Horen and the sole female student of Johann Gottlieb Fichte's private seminars. She attempted, unsuccessfully, to petition Immanuel Kant to submit "some jottings from [his] notebook" to be published in a journal she intended to start "with some friends." Despite Mereau's confidence that Kant would look beyond social conventions of standing and gender, he was reportedly dismissive of both her letter and her book, which accompanied it. She died in childbirth at age 36.

    Correspondence
    • Briefe von Friedrich Schiller an Sophie Mereau (1795-1802)
      • Friedrich Schiller Archive (friedrich-schiller-archiv.de)
    • Letter to Immanuel Kant from Sophie Mereau, December 1795.
      • In: Kant, Immanuel. Correspondence. Trans. and ed. Arnulf Zweig, 1999. 503-4.
    Further reading
    • Besserer Holmgren, Janet. "Sophie Mereau: 'I don't want to live only for the moment...'" In: The Women Writers in Schiller's Horen: Patrons, Petticoats, and the Promotion of Weimar Classicism. University of Delaware Press, 2007.
    • Hammerstein, Katharina Von. Sophie Mereau-Brentano: Freiheit-Liebe-Weiblichkeit. Trikolore sozialer und individueller Selbstbestimmung um 1800. Winter Verlag, 1994.
    • Hammerstein, Katharina Von & Katrin Horn. Sophie Mereau: Verbindungslinien in Zeit und Raum. Winter Verlag, 2008.

Reimarus, Elise (1735-1805)

Elise Reimarus (22 January 1735, Hamburg - 2 September 1805, Hamburg) was a translator and writer. She was the daughter of Hermann Samuel Reimarus and sister of Johann Albert Heinrich Reimarus. Elise translated Voltaire and Jean-François Marmontel. She wrote plays, an essay on natural right (Versuch einer Erläuterung und Vereinfachung der Begriffe vom natürlichen Staatsrecht), and is the likely author of the pamphlet Freiheit, which was traditionally attributed to her brother, Johann. Additionally, she corresponded with Moses Mendelssohn, Gotthold Ephraim Lessing, Friedrich Heinrich Jacobi, and Carl Leonhard Reinhold. She never married.

    Primary
    • Albert und Lotte Auf Dem Weg Zu Werthers Grab (1774)
      • Reprinted in: Spalding, Almut. Elise Reimarus (1735-1805): The Muse of Hamburg. Königshausen & Neumann, 2005. 502ff.
    • Cato (1776?)
      • Undated; Reprinted in: Spalding, Almut. Elise Reimarus (1735-1805): The Muse of Hamburg. Königshausen & Neumann, 2005. 398-439.
    • Bey dem Grabe des Herrn A[ugust] G[ottfried] S[chwalb], von einer Freundinn in Hamburg (1777)
      • In: Hamburgischer Correspondent 28, 15. Februar 1777
    • Über Gottfried Schwalbs Tod 9. Februar 1777. (1777)
      • Reprinted in: Spalding, Almut. Elise Reimarus (1735-1805): The Muse of Hamburg. Königshausen & Neumann, 2005. 499-500.
    • Versuch einer Erläuterung und Vereinfachung der Begriffe vom natürlichen Staatsrecht.
      • Reprinted in: Spalding, Almut. Elise Reimarus (1735-1805): The Muse of Hamburg. Königshausen & Neumann, 2005. 504-13.
    • An die Frau von N** in B** den 10ten April 1772. (1778)
      • In: "Schreiben eines Frauenzimmers an ihre Freundinn, den Unterricht überhaupt betreffend. Nebst einer kleinen Kinderphilosophie." Pädagogische Unterhandlungen. 9. Stück (1778): 800-11 [799-824] ["die Tochter eines Weltweisen"].
    • Erster Versuch einer kleinen Kinderphilosophie (1778)
      • In: “Schreiben eines Frauenzimmers an ihre Freundinn, den Unterricht überhaupt betreffend. Nebst einer kleinen Kinderphilosophie." 9. Stück (1778): 812-21 [799-824] ["die Tochter eines Weltweisen"].
    • Philolaus und Kriton: Ein Gespräch aus dem Griechischen (1780)
      • In: Deutsches Museum. 6. Stück (Juni 1780): 547-41.
    • Freiheit (Hamburg, 1791)
    Translated
    • Jean-François Marmontel. Die Freundschaft auf der Probe (1769)
      • Reprinted in: Spalding, Almut. Elise Reimarus (1735-1805): The Muse of Hamburg. Königshausen & Neumann, 2005. 367-97.
    • Voltaire. Zayre. Ein Trauerspiel in fünf Aufzügen
      • Reprinted in: Spalding, Almut. Elise Reimarus (1735-1805): The Muse of Hamburg. Königshausen & Neumann, 2005. 440-98.
    Further reading
    • Curtis-Wendlandt, Lisa. "Legality and Morality in the Political Thought of Elise Reimarus and Immanuel Kant." In: Political Ideas of Enlightenment Women: Virtue and Citizenship. Ashgate, 2014.
    • Spalding, Almut. Elise Reimarus (1735-1805), The Muse of Hamburg: A Woman of the German Enlightenment. Würzburg: Königshausen & Neumann, 2005.
    • Spalding, Almut. "Elise Reimarus's 'Cato': The Canon of the Enlightenment Revisited." The Journal of English and Germanic Philology. Vol. 102, No. 3 (July 2003). 376-389
    • "Women and revolution in Italy, Germany, and Holland." In: Green, Karen. A History of Women's Political Thought in Europe, 1700–1800. Cambridge: Cambrdige, 2014. 235-49.

Rodde-Schlözer, Dorothea von (1770-1825)

Source: Wikipedia

Dorothea von Rodde-Schlözer (18 August 1770, Göttingen - 12 July 1825, Avignon, France) was the first woman to earn a doctorate of philosophy in Germany. Dorothea's early education was shaped by an experiment: her father, Göttingen professor August Ludwig Schlözer, disagreed with a university colleague about Johann Bernard Basedow's theories on education, prompting each to educate his first born child according to rival methods. Dorothea's education invovled intense study with private tutors. She could read by four and by sixteen she had learned French, English, Dutch, Swedish, Italian, Latin, Spanish, Hebrew and Greek. She also studied broadly in the arts and sciences, eventually obtaining a doctorate. She married businessman Matthäus Rodde (1792), and was the first in Germany to use a hyphenated surname, writing as Rodde-Schlözer. From 1794, Dorothea's lover, Charles de Villers, lived with the couple. She died at age 55 of pneumonia in Avignon, France.

    Further reading
    • "Schlözer, Dorothea (von Rodde)." In: The Dictionary of Eighteenth-Century German Philosophers. Vol. 3. Eds. Heiner F. Klemme and Manfred Kuehn. Continuum, 2010. 1029-30.

Salomon, Adelgunde Konkordie (1726-1789)

Adelgunde Konkoride Salomon was a translator and member of the Teutsche Gesselschaft in Jena. Her writings were published in the Leipzig journal Neue Erweiterungen der Erkenntnis und des Vergnügens.

    Further reading
    • "Salomon, Adelgunde Konkordie." In: The Dictionary of Eighteenth-Century German Philosophers. Vol. 3. Eds. Heiner F. Klemme and Manfred Kuehn. Continuum, 2010. 974.

Schlegel-Schelling, Caroline (1763-1809)

Source: women-in-history.eu

Caroline Schlegel-Schelling (née Michaelis; 2 September 1763, Göttingen — 7 September 1809, Maulbronn) was an important fixture of the Jena Romantic circle. Caroline received an education from private tutors and from her father, Johan David Michaelis. Her first marriage (1784, to Johann Böhmer) ended with her husband's death in 1788. After this, Caroline relocated to Mainz in 1792, where she joined the circle of explorer Georg Forster, the husband of her Göttingen childhood friend Therese (Huber). Caroline's promotion of revolutionary ideals led to her imprisonment when Prussia recaptured French-occupied Mainz. She was pregnant at the time and gave birth after being released. She married August Wilhelm Schlegel in 1796, and moved with him and her daughter to Jena, where they joined Friedrich Schlegel and Dorothea Veit (Schlegel). Caroline's involvement in the Schlegels' projects at this time can be seen in her correspondence. She divorced Schlegel in 1803 and married the philosopher Friedrich Wilhelm Joseph Schelling. While the couple lived in Munich, she served as Schelling's secretary and wrote reviews. Carloline died of dysentery in 1809.

    Correspondence
    • Caroline: Briefe aus der Frühromantik, ed. Erich Schmidt (Leipzig, 1913)
    • Begegnung mit Caroline: Briefe von Caroline Michaelis-Böhmer-Schlegel-Schelling (Leipzig, 1979)
    Further reading
    • "Schlegel-Schelling, Caroline." In: The Dictionary of Eighteenth-Century German Philosophers. Vol. 3. Eds. Heiner F. Klemme and Manfred Kuehn. Continuum, 2010. 1017-8.
    • Friedrichsmeyer, Sara. "Carloine Schlegel-Schelling: 'A Good Woman, and no Heroine.'" In: In the Shadow of Olympus: German Women Writers Around 1800. Eds. Katherine Goodman and Edith Waldstein. Albany: SUNY Press, 1992. 115-136.
    • Reulecke , Martin. Caroline Schlegel-Schelling. Virtuosin der Freiheit. Eine kommentierte Bibliographie. Wurzburg: Königshausen & Neumann, 2010.
    • Ritchie, Gisela F. Caroline Schlegel-Schelling in Wahrheit und Dichtung. Bonn: Bouvier, 1968.
    • Daley, Mary Margaret. Women of Letters: A Study of Self and Genre in the Personal Writing of Caroline Schlegel-Schelling, Rahel Levin Varnhagen, and Bettina von Arnim. Camden House, 1998.

Sophia of Hanover (1630-1714)

Sophia with daughter Sophia Charlotte

Source: Wikipedia

Sophia of Hanover (14 October 1630, The Hague – 8 June 1714, Herrenhausen), was a friend and correspondent of Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz.

    Correspondence
    • Strickland, Lloyd (Ed. & trans.). Leibniz and the Two Sophies: Philosophical Correspondence. Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies, 2011.
    Further reading
    • Zedler, Beatrice H. "The Three Princesses." Hypatia, Vol. 4, No. 1, The History of Women in Philosophy (Spring, 1989). 28-63.
    • Strickland, Lloyd. "The Philosophy of Sophie, Electress of Hanover." Hypatia, Vol. 24, No. 2 (Spring, 2009). 186-204.
    • Sophie (Sophia) (1630-1714)

Sophia Charlotte of Hanover (1668-1705)

Source: Wikipedia

Sophia Charlotte of Hanover (30 October 1668, Iburg – 1 February 1705, Hanover), Queen in Prussia from 1701 to 1705, was married to Fredrick I. Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz initiated correspondence with Sophia Charlotte in 1697 after she proposed the construction of an observatory in Berlin: he hoped for the development of an Academy of Sciences comparable to those in Paris and London. After meeting in the following year, Sophia Charlotte requested from Leibniz friendship and tutoring. Soon she proclaimed herself a disciple of Leibniz, and when the observatory was approved in 1700, Leibniz stayed at her palace while visiting Berlin. During this time, Leinbiz drafted the charter for the Society of Sciences, and was instated as President. In correspondence, Leibniz discussed the real distinction between mind and body, although he provided the queen with a simplified version of an argument previously given to her mother, Sophia of Hanover, with whom the philosopher shared his doubts that the queen was suited to grasp the mathematical analogy he used. Sophia Charlotte, for her part, perceived superficiality, and expressed disappointment to her mother. The pair continued to meet when Leibniz was in Berlin or the queen was in Hanover. While visiting Hanover in January of 1705, she became ill, and within weeks died of pnemonia, at the age of 37. In response, Leibniz composed a long poem dedicated to her.

    Correspondence
    • Strickland, Lloyd (Ed. & trans.). Leibniz and the Two Sophies: Philosophical Correspondence. Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies, 2011.
    Further reading

Unzer, Johanna Charlotte (1724-1782)

Source: Wikipedia

Johanna Charlotte Unzer (née Ziegler; 27 November 1725, Halle - 29 January 1782, Altona) was poet laureate of the University of Helmstedt, and wrote a highly-original philosophical treatise aimed at female readers (Grundriß einer Weltweisheit für das Frauenzimmer, 1767) that engages with the philosophy of Christian Wolff and in some ways may be thought to anticipate the phenomoneology of Maurice Merleau-Ponty. Some of Unzer's most novel ideas concern embodiment and the immortality of the soul. Although she was tutored by Georg Friederich Meier, her uncle Johann Gottlob Krüger, and her eventual husband, Johann August Unzer, she was mostly ignored by her male contemporaries. She saw greater success as a poet.

    Correspondence
    • Briefe von Dorothea Schlegel an Friedrich Schleiermacher (Berlin, 1913)
    • Caroline und Dorothea Schlegel in Briefen, ed. Ernst Wienecke (Weimar, 1914)
    • Briefe von und an Friedrich und Dorothea Schlegel, Kritische Friedrich Schlegel-Ausgabe, ed. Ernst Behler, vol. 23 (Paderborn, 1987)
    Further reading
    • "Unzer, Johanna Charlotte." In: The Dictionary of Eighteenth-Century German Philosophers. Vol. 3. Eds. Heiner F. Klemme and Manfred Kuehn. Continuum, 2010. 1210-1.

Veit-Schlegel, Dorothea (1765-1839)

Source: Wikipedia

Dorothea Veit-Schlegel (24 October 1764 – 3 August 1839) was a poet, translator, novelist, and important member of the intellectual circle in Jena. Dorothea was the daugher of Moses Mendelssohn. In 1797, ater meeting Friedrich Schlegel in Berlin, she left her husband, a banker named Simon Veit. In Jena, Dorothea lived with Friedrich, his brother August Wilhelm Schlegel, and August Wilhelm's wife, Caroline Schlegel (Schelling). Dorothea, like Caroline, was an important female member of the early Romantic intellectual circle in Jena, and contributed much by way of correspondence. Dorothea published the first volume of a novel, Florentin (1801), but it remained unfinished. She and Friedrich were eventually married in Paris (1802) when she converted to Protestantism, but the couple later converted to Catholicism and renewed the marriage when they moved to Cologne in 1804.

    Further reading
    • "Veit-Schlegel, Dorothea." In: The Dictionary of Eighteenth-Century German Philosophers. Vol. 3. Eds. Heiner F. Klemme and Manfred Kuehn. Continuum, 2010. 1214-5.