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Dr. Harald Fischer

Die Gartenlaube

Die Gartenlaube
Leipzig, later Berlin 1853 – 1944
ed. by Alfred Estermann

(Illustrated Periodicals ; 1)

121,000 pages on 1,382 microfiches
1999, ISBN 3-89131-346-2

Diazo (negative): EUR 6,090.–
Silver (positive): EUR 7,880.–

Die Gartenlaube is among the most famous periodicals in the history of the German press. Established in the mid-19th century – in the «post-March» period marked by the disappointment and depoliticization that followed the Revolution of 1848/49 –, its publisher Ernst Keil quickly made it very successful. His new concept was soon accepted and the circulation climbed into the hundreds of thousands. Keil chose the then rather unusual Quarto format making room for more reading material. He also employed pictures and picture-text-combinations constantly instead of merely occasionally, aiming to produce a paper that would be both entertaining and insructive, informative and critical, and directed mainly at the middle classes. Keil thus developed a prototype that was to be often imitated, and that was soon considered to be the classic family magazine during the 19th century, offering novels and tales, reports and essays on paedagogical and medical topics, and thus functioning as an «aide» and «friend of the family». Of course, it had to face more «modern» competitors later on, but managed to remain successful up until 1944, the time of the demise of many newspapers and magazines. Looking at Die Gartenlaube from today´s perspective, the magazine clearly represents a comprehensive and essential source of material interesting for the study of cultural history.