Richard Wagner ist Leipziger - Leipzig Tourismus und Marketing GmbH

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Date: 07.12.2016

The student and revolutionary | Richard Wagner ist Leipziger - Leipzig Tourismus und Marketing GmbH

 

 
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The student and revolutionary

The young Richard Wagner - Leipzig 1813–1834

 
 
 
 
“The first ever independent appearance of the citizens of Leipzig on the political scene occurred in 1830. There were already public demonstrations of support following the outbreak of the July Revolution in France. In early September, the anti-feudal movement, which was particularly aimed against the city administration and the police, reached its zenith. The open revolt broke out when the police beat up and arrested a blacksmith’s apprentice on the Brühl. In particular, journeymen, workers and students were among the rebels. They stormed and demolished the residence of the police actuary, Jäger, the country house of the banker, Erkel, the residential homes of the military and brothels in the suburbs. As the revolutionary movement had spread from Leipzig out to other Saxon cities, the Government found itself forced to make a number of concessions to the liberal bourgeoisie. In addition to a promise of a constitution, it passed a city order, which was introduced immediately in Leipzig, i.e. before it had even been enacted in law.”

(Czok, Karl: Das Alte Leipzig. Koeler & Amelang, Leipzig, 1978, p. 187 f.)
 
 
“But then came the July revolution; all at once I became a revolutionary and became convinced that every halfway ambitious person should engage themselves exclusively in politics. By this point, I only felt at ease in the company of political writers: I also began work on an overture, which dealt with a political subject-matter.”

Richard Wagner: Autobiographical notes in: Richard Wagner: Sämtliche Schriften und Dichtungen. Volksausgabe Band 1. Breitkopf & Härtel Verlag, Leipzig, 1915, p. 7 f.
 
 
“The special editions of the ‘Leipziger Zeitung’ brought us the news of the July Revolution in Paris... Suddenly to become conscious of living at a time in which such things took place could not fail to have a startling effect on a boy of seventeen. The world as a historic phenomenon began from that day in my eyes, and naturally my sympathies were wholly on the side of the Revolution, which I regarded in the light of a heroic popular struggle crowned with victory, and free from the blemish of the terrible excesses that stained the first French Revolution.”

Richard Wagner: My Life. Volume 1. Dietrich‘sche Verlagsbuchhandlung, Leipzig, 1958, p. 66 f.
 
This picture shows the destruction of the residence of the police officer, Jäger, at the Grimmaische Tor on 4th September 1834. Water painting by Georg Emanuel Opitz (Museum of City History, Leipzig)
This picture shows the destruction of the residence of the police officer, Jäger, at the Grimmaische Tor on 4th September 1834. Water painting by Georg Emanuel Opitz (Museum of City History, Leipzig)
 
 
 
Source: Ein Leipziger (Leipzig Cultural Foundation)