Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Humboldt, Karl Wilhelm von (1767-1835), brother of Alexander von Humboldt, German politician and author, was born at Berlin, where, as well as at the university of Gottingen, he studied law, and also gave attention to the philosophy of Kant, to antiquities, and the philosophy of art. He formed a friendship with Schiller, and published after the poet's death a correspondence that had passed between them. In 1801 his literary and artistic pursuits were to some extent interrupted by diplomatic work, and from 1806-8 he was minister-plenipotentiary at Rome. He then returned to Berlin as Minister of the Interior in matters touching religion and education, and had much to do with the founding of the Berlin University; but, being appointed ambassador to Vienna in 1810, he was for some years busied about the events which were leading to the growth of Prussian greatness. From 1819 he lived chiefly in retirement upon his estate, and gave himself freely to study. His collected works were published at Berlin in seven volumes (1841-43), and consist of poems, essays on divers matters, and treatises on language. His essay on The Sphere and Duties of Government is one of the earliest and most spirited defences of "individualism" or "Laissez Faire" in politics as against paternal government.