Quotes / E. T. A. Hoffmann

"Perhaps, too, you will then believe that nothing is more wonderful, nothing more fantastic than real life, and that all that a writer can do is to present it as 'in a glass, darkly'."

"In fact, the inspirations of Hoffmann so often resemble the ideas produced by the immoderate use of opium, that we cannot help considering his case as one requiring the assistance of medicine rather than of criticism."
Walter Scott, "On the Supernatural in Fictitious Composition" (1827)

„We cannot recommend the rich content of this article enough to our readers: for which loyal subscriber, concerned about our national education, has not seen with grief that the pathological creations of the suffering man for many years left an imprint on Germany, and such confusions were inoculated as eminent and beneficial innovations into healthy minds?”
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, commentary to his own translation of the above.

"The celebrated short tales and novels of Ernst Theodor Wilhelm Hoffmann (1776–1822) are a byword for mellowness of background and maturity of form, though they incline to levity and extravagance, and lack the exalted moments of stark, breathless terror which a less sophisticated writer might have achieved. Generally they convey the grotesque rather than the terrible."
H.P. Lovecraft, "Supernatural Horror in Literature" (1927)