Sammlung Thule

From his two 1953 books (see bibliography) Farwerck started to refer to “Sammlung Thule”. When I first encountered these references I tried to look up what this “Thule Collection” may be, but I couldn’t find much. This became much easier.

The collection proves to be a series of books of “Old Nordic Poetry and Prose” translated to German and published between 1911 and 1930 (when the original publisher died). Looking for the books I find separate volumes, incomplete collections and complete collections which vary a lot in price.

The total set seems to be 25 volumes. 24 Volumes contain translations and the last is an introduction. It is this introduction that lacks most often. At the time of writing, the complete collection varries in price from € 340,- to € 1200,-. The difference appears to have to do with the state of the books (dust jackets missing, depravations) and the year of publication, since in the 1960’ies there seems to have been a reprint.

Judging Wikipedia, the original title is Thule – Altnordische Dichtung und Prosa. The publisher was Eugen Diederichs (1867-1930) who published more such collections. 12 Volumes about German history of culture, 9 volumes of art, 8 volumes of religion and philosophy in China, 35 volumes with fairytales, 77 volumes of German history, to name but a few. Many of these collections where published in the same period too.

The man who seems to have done the actual work to the collection was Felix Niedner (1859-1934) a scholar in the field of Scandinavian studies. He did not make the translations all by himself. He had help from Walter Baetke (1884-1978), Felix Genzmer (1878-1959), Paul Herrmann (1866-1930) and Andreas Heusler (1865-1940).

I don’t know if Farwerck got the whole row or just a few books from them, but he refers to several and uses the numbering of the collection. It must have been quite a read.

The books will look great on your shelve too by the way:

No, this is not a photo of my own collection, just a photo I stole from an online seller.

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