Places Discussed

(Critical Guide to Settings and Places in Literature)


*Spessart. Town in a mountainous region of Germany, not far from which is located the earthen hut where Simplicissimus lives until the age of ten, when the town is looted and destroyed by marauding soldiers. He returns to Spessart much later, having discovered his true parentage, to obtain documentary evidence of his real identity.

Hermit’s hut

Hermit’s hut. Mean refuge in the forest that Simplicissimus finds after the destruction of his first home, where he is educated in piety and poverty; this existence too is interrupted by marauding soldiers.


*Hanau. Fortified town where Simplicissimus is conscripted into domestic service in the governor’s house, where he progresses to the role of professional fool.

Hirschfeld Abbey

Hirschfeld Abbey. Quarters of the Croats who capture Simplicissimus from Hanau, where he acquires a new master; after fleeing therefrom he becomes embroiled in a witches’ Sabbath.


*Magdeburg. German city in which Simplicissimus arrives—apparently having flown there—after the witches’ Sabbath, to be conscripted yet again. It is there that he first meets Herzbruder and is charged with treason before being delivered into the service of another military master.


*Soest (sewst). Westphalian town where—after a brief interval of calm and comfort in a convent called Paradise—Simplicissimus begins to rise...

(The entire section is 629 words.)


(Critical Guide to Settings and Places in Literature)

Allen, Ann Taylor. Satire and Society in Wilhelmine Germany: Kladderadatsch and Simplicissimus, 1890-1914. Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 1984. This work has an excellent history and criticism of The Adventurous Simplicissimus. Discussion of social problems as related to literature. Bibliography.

Glasberg, Ronald. “The Perversions of Folly in Grimmelshausen’s Simplicius Simplicissimus: Foreshadowing of Nazism.” CLIO: A Journal of Literature, History, and the Philosophy of History 16, no. 3 (1987): 253-271. A great discussion of The Adventurous Simplicissimus and its characters. Attempts to bring Nazism into the article, but the character analysis is beneficial.

Negus, Kenneth. Grimmelshausen. New York: Twayne, 1974. A wonderful book that notes major influences on Grimmelshausen. Includes a chapter on his sources and references. Bibliography.

Richtie, J. M. “Grimmelshausen’s Simplicissimus and The Runagate Courage.” In Knaves and Swindlers: Essays on the Picaresque Novel in Europe, edited by Christine J. Whitbourn. London: Oxford University Press, 1974. An excellent essay integrating the Thirty Years’ War, Grimmelshausen’s life, and some of his other works. Bibliography.

Wicks, Ulrich. Picaresque Narrative, Picaresque Fictions: A Theory and Research Guide. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 1989. An excellent beginning source. Describes the various aspects of a picaresque novel. Discusses The Adventurous Simplicissimus and its themes.