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COLLECTION Identifier: MS Ger 202

Franz Clemens Brentano correspondence

Correspondence of the German philosopher, Franz Clemens Brentano.


  • 1867-1917

Language of Materials

Collection materials are in German and Italian.

Conditions Governing Access

Restricted: fragile; use surrogate. For access to original consult curatorial staff.

Conditions Governing Use

Images linked to this finding aid are intended for public access and educational use. This material is owned and/or held by the Houghton Library, and is provided solely for the purpose of teaching or individual research. Any other use, including commercial reuse, mounting on other systems, or other forms of redistribution requires the permission of the curator.


9 linear feet (17 boxes)

Chiefly correspondence and manuscripts of Brentano. Major correspondents include Christian von Ehrenfels, Oskar Kraus, Anton Marty, Alfred Kastil, Karl Stumpf, Franz Hillebrand, Edmund Husserl, and smaller amounts of correspondence with Heinrich Gomperz, Theodor Gomperz, and Herman Schell. There are a considerable number of letters from Giuseppe Amato Pojero, Emil Utitz, and Francesco Orestano. Other papers include drafts of psychology lectures and manuscripts of writings, Petzold, Das Welt Problem, and On Reininger. The papers mostly written in German; letters from Amato Pojero are in Italian.

Biographical / Historical

Brentano (1838-1917) was a German philosopher and psychologist generally regarded as the founder of act psychology, or intentionalism. He was ordained a Roman Catholic priest in 1864 and appointed a professor at the University of W├╝rzburg in 1872. In 1873 he resigned from both his post at the university and the priesthood. He then began writing one of his most influential works, Psychologie vom empirischen Standpunkte (1874; Psychology from an empirical standpoint ). In 1874 he was appointed professor at the University of Vienna and in 1880 he decided to marry. His marriage was blocked by the Austrian authorities who considered him still a cleric and he was forced to resign his professorship and moved with his wife to Leipzig. He returned to the University of Vienna in 1895 as a "Privatdozent."


  1. I. Letters from Franz Brentano
  2. II. Letters to Franz Brentano
  3. III. Other letters
  4. IV. Later correspondence
  5. V. Compositions and other papers
  6. VI. Family letters: Letters from Franz Brentano
  7. VII. Family letters: Letters to Franz Brentano
  8. VIII. Family letters: Other letters

Physical Location


Immediate Source of Acquisition

71M-125, 77M-78. Permanent deposit by Franz Brentano Foundation; received: 1966, 1971.

Separated Materials

See also at the Houghton Library: Franz Clemens Brentano Compositions (MS Ger 230).
Brentano, Franz Clemens, 1838-1917. Franz Clemens Brentano correspondence, 1867-1917: Guide.
Houghton Library, Harvard College Library

Repository Details

Part of the Houghton Library Repository

Houghton Library is Harvard College's principal repository for rare books and manuscripts, literary and performing arts archives, and more. The library's holdings of primary source material are managed by an expert staff and shared with scholars, students and the public in the reading room.

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