- Category : 1881-births
- Type : PE
- Profile : 1/3 - Investigating / Martyr
- Definition : Split - Small (21,36)
- Incarnation Cross : RAX Planning 4
Austrian writer, a novelist, son of a wealthy Jewish textile manufacturer and his wife who came from a Jewish banker family. Religion did not play a central role in his education. "My mother and father were Jewish only through accident of birth", Zweig said later in an interview. Yet he did not renounce his Jewish faith and wrote repeatedly on Jews and Jewish themes. Zweig had a warm relationship with Theodor Herzl, the founder of Zionism, whom he met when Herzl was still literary editor of the Neue Freie Presse, then Vienna's main newspaper; Herzl accepted for publication some of Zweig's early essays.
Zweig married Friderike Maria von Winternitz (born Burger) in 1920; they had two daughters and divorced in 1938, because he had begun an affair with his secretary. As Friderike Zweig she published a book on her former husband after his death. She later also published a picture book on Zweig. In 1939 Zweig married his secretary Lotte Altmann.
Zweig left Austria in 1934, following Hitler's rise to power in Germany. He then lived in England (in London first, then from 1939 in Bath). Because of the swift advance of Hitler's troops into France and all of Western Europe, Zweig and his second wife crossed the Atlantic Ocean and traveled to the United States, where they settled in 1940 in New York City, and traveled. In August 1940 he settled in Brazil, renting a two-bedroom villa in the hills above Rio de Janeiro. On 21 February 1942, as his wife went marketing, he methodically writing farewell letters, including one to his former wife, Friederike, and putting his affairs in order. The following day, Sunday, was the servant's day off. Sometime between noon and 4:00 PM, he and Lotte took massive doses of Veronal and lay down together on the bed, Stefan in his shirt, tie and trousers and Lotte in a flowered kimono. Their bodies, locked in a final embrace, where found the following afternoon.