More than just a poet…







von  Marion Rissart

(Translation: DeepL)

A birthday greeting to the patriotic cosmopolitan Heinrich Heine

“Düsseldorf wouldn’t be Düsseldorf if the city didn’t take care of its celebrities. Heinrich Heine, the great German poet, always appears here somewhere. Be it in the form of street names, as the namesake of the university or in the house where he was born, which has been converted into the “Heine Haus Literaturhaus”. The Heinrich Heine Institute in Carlstadt with its archive, library and museum is also part of this.

A Düsseldorf jong and Parisian free spirit

The blond boy Heinrich “Harry” Heine, who celebrated his 225th birthday on December 13, 2022, was someone for whom the Rhineland eventually became too small. The merchant’s son and reluctant lawyer from Bolkerstr. 53, moved from Düsseldorf’s old town to Paris. Intoxicated by the spirit of the French Revolution of 1830, he wallowed there full of creative energy in a mecca of French intellectuality and creativity. With his “Reisebilder,” “Buch der Lieder,” and “Deutschland, ein Wintermärchen,” he captivated the public. His circle of acquaintances in Paris included such illustrious names as Chopin and Liszt, as well as Dumas and Hugo. The free spirit did not care about etiquette, but lived unmarried with a French peasant girl.

Heinrich Heine das ungeliebte Kind Düsseldorfs; © Marion Rissart

A guest draws Heinrich Heine Image copyright Marion Rissart

Books in the Heinrich-Heine-Antiquariat; © Marion Rissart

Heinrich-Heine-Denkmal, Universitaets- und Landesbibliothek Duesseldorf; © Marion Rissart

An exile without a return ticket for Heinrich Heine

A child on the sunny side of happiness. If the somewhat involuntary exile did not mutate at some point into a permanent solution with no prospect of a return ticket. Later banned from his profession by Germany, Heine was always plagued by financial worries, despite high fees and financial injections from a rich uncle. Moreover, homelessness completely hollowed out the already pain-stricken man. He, who claimed of himself (not without irony) that he was “nothing but a poet”, remained strangely sentimental and small when he wrote lines like these in his “Winter Songs”:

And when I came to the Rhine bridge
Probably to the harbor redoubt
There I saw flowing the Father Rhine
In the quiet moonlight


One cannot escape it, the homeland. I could have told him, but he already knew 🙂 In this sense: All the best Heinrich Heine!

Heinrich-Heine-Heine Institut Bilkerstr.; © Marion Rissart

Papier ist Wissen; © Marion Rissart

Die Winterlieder; © Marion Rissart

Literarische Ruhe im Heinrich Heine Institut; © Marion Rissart

Women’s stories – cultural stories from art and music

a book by Anja Weinberger

Summer retreat –

a book by the Leiermann authors

Recreation and travel in earlier times


More from Marion Rissart: Die Ahnin – Das Leben unserer Ahnen

Do you always want to be informed about the latest activities at the Leiermann?

The Leiermann is 100% privately supported, organized and advanced. With your support we could create even more.


The Leiermann blog about literature

All about Düsseldorf

The Leiermann Book Publishing House


365 +1 fesselnde Einblicke in unsere Kulturgeschichte

Ein inspirierender Begleiter für jeden Tag – entdecken Sie Geschichte, Musik, Literatur, Kunst und mehr. Ein zeitloser Kalender, der unterhält und überrascht. Ein Buch für alle, die die Vielfalt unserer Kultur schätzen.
Zum Buch

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This