Theodor Gottlieb von Hippel, "On Marriage" (1792)
In the second half of the eighteenth century, the Enlightenment brought forth progressive conceptions of marriage and women’s role in society. Author and Königsberg city council president Theodor Gottlieb von Hippel (1741-1796) was an eloquent advocate of reforming women’s legal rights and social status. In addition to writing novels in the sentimental tradition, he also published the pioneering and influential treatise On the Civic Improvement of Women (1792). The frontispiece and title page of the third edition of his work On Marriage (1792; first publ. in 1774) is reproduced below. Etchings by Daniel Chodowiecki (1726-1801).