HEINRICH HOFFMANN
(* 13. Juni 1809 in Frankfurt am Main; † 20. September 1894 ebd.) verwendete auch die Pseudonyme Heulalius von Heulenburg, Reimerich Kinderlieb, Peter Struwwel sowie Polycarpus Gastfenger. Er war ein deutscher Psychiater, Lyriker und Kinderbuchautor und ist der Verfasser des Struwwelpeters.

Hoffmann published poems and a satirical comedy before, in 1845, a publisher friend persuaded him to have a collection of illustrated children's verses printed which Hoffmann had done as Christmas present for his son. The book, later called Struwwelpeter after one of its anti-heroes, became popular with the public and had to be reprinted regularly; many foreign translations followed. "Struwwelpeter" was not perceived as cruel or overly moral by Hoffmann's contemporaries. The original title, "Funny stories and droll pictures", indicates that entertainment was at least partly the author's intention. After the book's success, Hoffmann felt persuaded to write other children's books, of which only the first, König Nussknacker oder der arme Reinhold, became popular. He also kept on writing satires and (often comic) poems for adults. His satires show his strong skepticism towards all kinds of ideology and his distaste for religious, philosophical or political bigotry. Even in Germany, he is today largely remembered for his Struwwelpeter.

 

Heinrich Hoffmann, Struwwelpeter, 1845
Heinrich Hoffmann, Struwwelpeter, 1845