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Lavater, Johann Caspar

(1,639 words)

Author(s): Marie, Gisèle
Lavater, Johann Caspar, * 15 Jan 1741 (Zürich), † 2 Jan 1801 (Zürich) A Swiss Lutheran minister and theologian, Lavater is mostly known as the founder of the “modern” science of physiognomy. As a poet he acquired some notoriety by his Schweizer Lieder (1767). A prolific author, he wrote nearly 130 works (mostly religious books, sermons, canticles, a diary, and Christian handbooks with moral advice). His correspondence amounts to more than 11.000 letters exchanged with people belonging to practically all social milieus, from simple worke…