The Castle Siebeneichen / Where Novalis Wrote “Hymns to the Night,” “Heinrich von Ofterdingen,” & Other Works


Easter, 2024

Dear Friends,

On May 2, 2021, Section friends and members celebrated the 249th anniversary of the birth of Friedrich von Hardenberg, the poet Novalis, by taking a virtual tour of the Castle Siebeneichen. 



A Journey to Dresden

The pictures in the video are rare. They are in an old book – in German, out of print — written by one of Novalis’ relatives – Monica von Miltitz.

Monica was an anthroposophist and a friend of Rudolf Steiner, Marie Steiner, and Albert Steffen. She lived in the castle Siebeneichen near Dresden – a castle in the Hardenberg extended family – a place where Novalis worked on “Hymns to the Night” and “Heinrich von Ofterdingen.” Novalis visited that castle often.

This video contains many pictures of Castle Siebeneichen. As you watch the video, you might want to imagine yourself walking the grounds of the estate, as Novalis did himself.


Detail of a wood carving in the Castle.


The Mystery of Lazarus-John and the Heavenly Sophia

Among those very rare photographs of the castle, we find one photograph of a wood carving that Novalis must have seen many times. It is a representation of John the Evangelist supporting Mary at the foot of the cross. In the middle of the video, where the music changes to the minor key, you will see a picture of this wood carving. One might wish to imagine Novalis contemplating this artwork during his visits to the castle. His family typically celebrated Christmas here.


Monica von Miltitz: Relative of Novalis / Friend of the United States

Marie Steiner and Albert Steffen visited Castle Siebeneichen often. They were welcomed guests. Their friend Monica von Miltitz, a relative of Novalis, owned the castle. Monica von Miltitz was a dedicated anthroposophist and a friend of the United States. She did much good work for Novalis.

Here is a picture of Monica von Miltitz. You see her being honored by the President of Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania (close to Bethlehem) after she gave to the college the sword worn by General Lafayette which had been preserved in the extended Hardenberg family for many years.


Monica von Miltitz presents the sword worn by General Lafayette to the President of Lafayette College in Pennsylvania.