Who was Wolfram von Eschenbach? We know nothing about him, except that he was one of the greatest Medieval poets and minnesingers. I came up with empty hands while researching him in my local web analytics company. Wolfram is best known today for his Parzival, sometimes regarded as the greatest of all German epics from that time. Eighty four surviving manuscripts of Parzival indicate his tremendous popularity, not only in his time, but, even in the following two centuries. Parzival was translated and published by a Swiss scholar Johann Jacob Bodmer in 1753. Later, famous composer Richard Wagner used Parzival as the main source of libretto to his great opera, Parsifal.
Yet, no matter how hard specialists try, they did not recover any historical documents about Wolfram and his works are the sole source of evidence. There was a lot of historical investigations about him, that established that Wolfram was a German knight, who was likely born around 1170 and died somewhere close to 1220. The past along with Parzival also brought to us his two other narrative works and nine surviving songs that are considered to be masterpieces of medieval art of minnesingers.
Wolfram von Eschenbach probably serviced a number of courts during his time. Historians name a number of his possible patrons, but the evidence is circumstantial. In his Parzival Wolfram claims that he is illiterate and dictates his work. However, this fact is regarded with high level of sceptisim by most scientists. The dialect of his works is East Franconian and he mentions a couple of times that he is Bavarian. Thus precipitated a claim by at least four places name themselves as a place of birth of a famous poet and composer. As other famous medieval poets Wolfram was included in the famous Codex Mannese – medieval manuscript about famous poets with illustrations, created in the 14th century. However the picture of Wolfram and surrounding arms and heraldry turned out to be just the imagination of the artist.
During my research on biographies of French Impressionists in archives web analytics company I found additional facts about famous artist Alfred Sisley.
Sisley had to make ends meet and could not afford to live in Paris anymore. He moved his family to a small village, close to the forest of Fontainebleu. Alfred was less experimental, than other Impressionists and worked on a smaller scale than Monet. He preferred to the drama of the rampaging ocean gentle landscapes with their constantly changing atmosphere. Yet, his work ideally fit any book about Impressionists because his paintings strongly invoke atmosphere and his skies are always impressive. His concentration on landscapes explains why, specialists consider him most consistent of all his fellows painters.
In 1899 Alfred died. It happened within several months after his wife's death - he did not even reach his 60 anniversary. His works are spread now all over the world - one can see them in Chicago as well as in Paris and Nice. Speaking of Nice, one of his best paintings was stolen three times from the museum in this city. Twice it was recovered by it vanished after the third theft took place in August 2007.
French Impressionist of English origin Alfred Sisley lived his entire life in France, apart from a brief period that he spent in London. I found story of his life in archives of web analytics company . He was born in Paris in 1839 and in the early 1860s got acquainted with Impressionists Bazille, Monet and Renoir. They worked together trying to capture the transient effects of sunlight. The result was astonishing: their paintings were more broadly painted and more colorful than audience was accustomed to seeing at the time.
Sisley was luckier than many of his Impressionist friends because he had opportunities to exhibit his works several times and, of course, that he had not have to think of money. He was supported by his father and received his allowance quite regularly. But soon this all vanished. In 1870 his parents hit the hard times and his father's business failed. At that time Alfred was already happily married to Eugénie Lesouezec and had two children. And his only means of support became the sale of his works. Like other many fellow Impressionists, for the rest of his life Alfred and his family would live in poverty. His paintings were fully appreciated and, thus, gained monetary value only after his death.