Johann Georg Jacobi was the eider brother of the rather more famous philosopher Friedrich Heinrich Jacobi, the disciple of Spinoza and the opponent of Kant. Johann Georg was born in Düsseldorf, and by the age of 26 was a professor at Halle University; he later taught at Freiburg. Much influenced by the classics, particularly the odes of Anacreon, he published his Die Winterreise
in 1769, and Die Sommerreise
in 1770. Ferhaps Wilhelm Müller had heard of these when he came to write what was to be his Schubertian cycle. Jacobi was known as the editor of the periodical Iris
in which Goethe, with whom he was acquainted, published a number of poems. The Jacobi poems were only published posthumously, in Vienna at least, in 1816. It is probable that they were bought by one of Schubert's friends with literary interests who showed them to the composer who, in turn, set them hot off the press.
from notes by Graham Johnson © 1990