elisa_rolle (elisa_rolle) wrote,

Hans Henny Jahnn (December 17, 1894 – November 29, 1959)

Hans Henny Jahnn was a German playwright, novelist, and organ-builder. He met Gottlieb Friedrich "Friedel" Harms, with whom he was united in a "mystical wedding" in 1913, at a secondary school (the St. Pauli Realschule) which they both attended, and they lived together between 1914 and 1918. When Jahnn became aware of his homosexual inclinations and contrived to escape with his friend Friedel in 1913, his goal was Iceland. The refuge the two ultimately found in the spring of 1915 – when they were also fleeing conscription – was a remote area on the Sogne Fjord in Norway: Aurland. The fact that, in the face of the overwhelming support for war, Jahnn and Harms remained pacifists, not out of political conviction but because they did not want to shoot at young men, is to their lasting credit. They met Ellinor Philips in 1918: in 1926, Jahnn married Ellinor, and Harms married Sybille Philips, Ellinor's sister, in 1928. At the end of 1934 he returned to Bornholm and found a farm near Rutsker in the north-west of the island, which he bought with money from Sibylle Harms, the sister of his wife Ellinor and the widow of Friedel Harms, who had died in 1931.

Timeline & Places:

• December 17, 1894: born.

• November 29, 1959: died. Buried at Nienstedten Cemetery, Nienstedtener Marktplatz 19, 22609 Hamburg, Germania. Buried alongside: Gottlieb Friedrich Harms (1893-1931).


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