Volume 20 Cover Simplicissimus

This image is from the journal Simplicissimus, showcasing most of the common notes of Thomas Theodor Heine’s style and intent behind his illustrations. This volume was released in 1898, during the most early years of the journal’s publication. Heine had worked in such settings before, having gone from art school into the business of illustrations for journals, but Simplicissimus was more notable since it was partially of his own creation (“Thomas Theodor Heine”). The color and dark feeling of the images from his prior work is retained here, which remains consistent ever after Heine’s work in Simplicissimus. What makes this piece special is that it is the first time that this red bulldog has been featured on the cover Simplicissimus, which is a frequent visitor in Thomas Theodor Heine’s work. Heine’s work is often very political, and this image is no exception. The title above seems to relate to and critique Friedrich Thielen, a German politician for the National Democratic Party of Germany. The criticisms would soon turn around, however, as Heine’s Jewish heritage combined with his strong political views would turn him intensely against the rise of the Nazi party. Additionally, as time goes on, Heine’s illustrations become more and more violent, grotesque, and use evil figures such as devils or other disturbing beasts to showcase his points and satirical messages.


Heine, Thomas Theodor. Simplicissimus, vol. 30, 26 Oct. 1931, doi:http://www.simplicissimus.info/index.php?id=5.

“Thomas Theodor Heine.” Lambiek.net, 1 Jan. 1970, www.lambiek.net/artists/h/heine_thomas-theodor.htm.