This splendid 1985 postal cover and portrait of the German satirical essayist, poet, and critic, Kurt Tucholsky (born Jan. 9, 1890, Berlin, Germany — died Dec. 21, 1935, Hindas, near Gothenburg, Sweden) was issued to commemorate the 50th anniversary of his death.

TucholskyKurtFDC

After studying law and serving in World War I, Tucholsky left Germany in 1924 and lived first in Paris, and after 1929 in Sweden.

Tucholsky wrote under the psuedonyms Theobald Tiger, Peter Panter, Ignaz Wrobel, and Kaspar Hauser.  He contributed to Rote Signale (1931; “Red Signals”), a collection of communist poetry, and to Schaubühne, later Die Weltbühne, a journal published by the pacifist Carl von Ossietzky.

Tucholsy_stoewer_elite_typewriter

Tucholsky’s Stoewer-Elite

In 1933 Tucholsky’s works were denounced by the Nazi government and banned, and he was stripped of his German citizenship.

Tucholsky_Mercedes_typewriter1

Tucholsky’s Mercedes

Tucholsky’s output included aphorisms, book and drama reviews, light verse, short stories, and witty satirical essays in which he criticized German militarism and nationalism and the dehumanizing forces of the modern age. His poetry was set to music and performed widely in German cabarets.

Tucholsky_WhatIf

Kurt Tucholsky committed suicide in 1935. He was memorably described by Erich Kästner (“Kurt Tucholsky, Carl v. Ossietzky, ‘Weltbühne'”, in Die Weltbühne, June 4, 1946, p. 22) as:

“… the little fat Berliner who wanted to prevent a catastrophe with his typewriter.”

For more read: Kurt Tucholosky – advocate of the dying Weimar Republic