Gotthold Ephraim Lessing, one of the most important dramatists and aesthetic theorists in European literature, was born on 22 January 1729 as the third of twelve sons of Johann Gottfried and Justine Salome Lessing into a humble and deeply religious family in the small town of Kamenz near Dresden (Saxony). His father, a recognized theologian, was the town's Protestant minister, a severe patriarch and a lover of culture. He soon recognized his son's extraordinary intellectual abilities, instructed him at an early age in various areas of knowledge and sent him to the Lateinschule (high school) in Kamenz from 1737-41. At the age of twelve, young Lessing was rather proficient in Latin and Greek, and spoke English and French fluently. H…
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Membrives, Eva Parra. "Gotthold Ephraim Lessing". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 01 July 2004
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