D. H. Lawrence

Controversial English author of the early 20th century.

D. H. Lawrence (1885–1930)

  • English writer
  • Born: 11 September 1885 in Eastwood, England
  • Died: 2 March 1930 in Vence, France
  • 'The Lost Girl', 1920
  • 'The Plumed Serpent', 1926
  • 'Lady Chatterley's Lover', 1928 

David Herbert Lawrence was born the son of a miner and a teacher on 11 September 1885 in Eastwood, Nottinghamshire. His mother came from a middle-class family and had a decisive influence on her son's upbringing. Lawrence is considered the first renowned writer in the early 20th century English literature to come from a working class family. Between 1902 and 1906, D. H. Lawrence worked as a teacher and completed a university degree in education, which was made possible for him by a scholarship. In 1911, however, he fell ill with tuberculosis and was no longer able to cope with the efforts of his regular professional life; so he decided to become a freelance writer.

In 1912, Lawrence began a relationship with his former professor's wife. Frieda Weekley - née Frieda von Richthofen (distantly related to the German air force hero, the 'Red Baron') - left her husband and three children and moved to Germany with D. H. Lawrence. Frieda Freiin von Richthofen was well-acquainted with Bohemian Munich, so Lawrence got to know the artist and intellectual scene of Schwabing, at this time oscillating between anarchism and the cult of the Fuhrer.

D.H. Lawrence and Frieda Richthofen
D.H. Lawrence and Frieda Richthofen

For a long time, the British writer D. H. Lawrence was classified as a scandal writer, primarily because of his novel 'Lady Chatterley's Lover”. He was also demonized as a 'pornographer'. This work triggered an unprecedented storm of indignation and remained banned for decades. It was not until 1960 (more than a quarter of a century after his death) that it was published in an unabridged version in Great Britain. But the novel is not only a 'sexual novel', just as the writer Lawrence should by no means be reduced to this last important work. His life's work includes twelve novels and a large number of short novels and stories, plays and hundreds of poems, as well as longer essays on psychoanalysis, about Thomas Hardy and the classics of American literature. In addition, there are four travel books - about Italy, Sardinia, Etruscan places and Mexico – combining descriptions of nature, biographical episodes and philosophy. 

The Sea by D.H. Lawrence

His stay in Thumersbach during the summer of 1921 inspired the author to write his novel 'The Captain's Doll'. Frieda's younger sister, Johanna, was married to the Prussian Major Max von Schreibershofen from Berlin. He owned a summer residence on the lake of Zell am See - the Villa Alpensee in Thumersbach. In July and August 1921, the Lawrences spent four relatively carefree weeks with the Schreibershofen couple in Thumersbach. Despite his lung disease, D. H. Lawrence was an avid climber: 'On Tuesday we climbed the Hundstein - twice as high as Snowdon - and the snowy peaks all round. Yesterday we drove to the big glacier at Ferleiten - or rather under it. The waters roar down like thunder. Pity you can't all be here - it is never too hot.'

Pension Alpensee
Pension Alpensee Bezirksarchiv Zell am See

D H Lawrence 'The Mess of Love' Poem animation

Zell am See–Kaprun