German playwright and journalist; born in Hamburg Feb. 12, 1810; died in Berlin Oct. 24, 1884; studied at the University of Berlin (Ph.D. 1831). Shortly after the completion of his studies he removed to Paris, where he became infatuated with the daughter of a Portuguese nobleman who lived there in exile. In order to win her he enlisted in Don Pedro's regiment, and was wounded during an engagement. His fiancée having died in the meantime, Wollheim left Paris for Hamburg; and upon the death of his father he went to Copenhagen, where he was engaged in cataloguing the valuable Pali manuscripts in the royal library, being later appointed by King Frederick VI. secretary to the private council. In 1838 he went to Vienna, where he produced his first play, "Andrea," which represented the adventures of the French marshal Andrea Massena. Ten years later his "Raphael Sanzio" was staged in Vienna; while his "Rosen im Norden," or "Des Teufels Wette," was received with equal favor both in Berlin and in Hamburg. In 1849 he was appointed instructor in Oriental and modern languages at the University of Berlin, being at the same time engaged as the Berlin correspondent of the London "Morning Chronicle."

From 1854 to 1858 Wollheim was employed in the diplomatic service of the Austrian government; and during the following six years he edited at Hamburg a weekly journal, the "Controle," devoted to the promotion of Austrian interests. In 1868 he established his own summer theater at St. Georg, a suburb of Hamburg; and two years later he went to Berlin, where he became editor of the "Moniteur Officiel du Gouvernement Général." From 1871 to 1872 he was attached to the German embassy at Paris. Among his works may be mentioned: "National-Literatur der Skandinavier" (1876-77); "Deutscher Seehandel und die Französischen Prisengerichte"; "Indiscretionen" (1883); and "Neue Indiscretionen" (1884), containing many autobiographical data. He died in poverty in St. Hedwig's Hospital at Berlin.

  • Brümmer's Dichter-Lexikon;
  • Schröder's Lexicon der Hamburger Schriftsteller;
  • Wurzbach, Biog. Lex.;
  • Gottschall, Deutsche National-Literatur des Neunzehnten Jahrhunderts;
  • Max Mendheim, A. E. Wollheim da Fonseca.
S. M. Z.
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