Born: Oc­to­ber 17, 1815, Lü­beck, Ger­ma­ny.

Died: Ap­ril 6, 1884, Lü­beck, Ger­ma­ny.

Buried: Burg­tor­fried­hof, Lü­beck, Ger­ma­ny.


Son of a pas­tor, Em­man­u­el in­tend­ed to fol­low in his fa­ther’s foot­steps, and stu­died in Bonn and Ber­lin. How­ev­er, his real in­ter­ests lay not in the­o­lo­gy, but in clas­sic­al and ro­mance phi­lo­lo­gy.

In 1838 he ac­cept­ed a tu­tor­ship in the house­hold of the Rus­sian am­bass­a­dor in Ath­ens, Prince Ka­ta­ka­zi, where he stayed un­til 1840. The same year he and his friend Ernst Cur­ti­us pub­lished a vol­ume of trans­la­tions from Greek.

In 1842 he en­tered the ser­vice of King Fried­rich Wil­helm IV of Pruss­ia, with an an­n­ual st­ipend of 300 thal­ers.

In 1851, Max­i­mil­i­an II of Ba­va­ria in­vit­ed Gei­bel to Mun­ich as an hon­or­a­ry pro­fess­or at the un­i­ver­si­ty, and he re­linq­uished his Prus­sian sti­pend.

While in Mun­ich, Gei­bel was at the cen­ter of the li­ter­a­ry cir­cle called Die Kro­ko­dile (the Cro­co­dile So­ci­e­ty), which was con­cerned with tra­di­tion­al forms.

In 1852 he mar­ried Aman­da Trum­mer, and the next year they had a daugh­ter, Ada Ma­rie Car­o­line.

Beginning as a mem­ber of the group of po­li­ti­cal po­ets who her­ald­ed the re­vo­lu­tion of 1848, Gei­bel was al­so the chief po­et to wel­come the es­tab­lish­ment of the Em­pire in 1871.

Geibel left Mun­ich in 1869 and re­turned to Lü­beck, where he stayed un­til his death.