substudY "WORLD WAR II"
Information on prof. dr. Hans-Hermann Kritzinger (1887-1968)
- T.W.M. van Berkel -

Nederlandse versie

Prof. dr. Hans-Hermann Kritzinger
Prof. dr. Hans-Hermann

Personal data [1]
Professor doctor Hans-Hermann Kritzinger was born as Hermann Wilhelm Johannes Viktor Kritzinger on June 10, 1887 in Boitzenburg, on the north side of Berlin. On December 2, 1968, he died in Achern because of a short, severe disease.
Kritzinger was an evangelical. His father, Johannes Kritzinger, born in 1855 and deceased in 1937, was appointed as a minister in 1878. From 1891 until around 1926, he was Court and Dome preacher in Berlin and Geheime Konsistorialrat. He taught Kritzinger that authority was instituted by God and therefore could not be contested, an idea which made it difficult for Kritzinger to protest against injustice which was done to him in his work and from which he could hardly dissociate himself. During World War I, Kritzinger's father strongly supported the German cause. In one of his sermons, he expressed his disapproval of parents who kept their children from becoming a voluntary soldier.
Kritzinger's grandfather, Friedrich-Wilhelm Kritzinger (1816-1890), theologian and educationalist, director of the Königlichen Lehrerinnen Seminar in Droyßig, is known because of the text he wrote of the German Christmas songs Still, still, still... and Süsser die Glocken nie klingen.[2]  
Kritzinger was married with Elsbeth-Luise Schnetka, a preacher's daughter. They married on December 27, 1920.
In 1911, Kritzinger graduated in astronomy. After World War I, he was decorated with the Eisernes Kreuz II am schwarz-weissen Band and the Zivil-Verdienst Kreuz. On January 30, 1943, nominated by the Supreme Command of the Kriegsmarine, Hitler appointed him as professor because of his efforts in solving warfare problems. On March 28, 1944, he was decorated with the Kriegsverdienstkreuz I. Klasse.
Kritzinger has been a member of the NSDAP. He was subscribed at May 1, 1933; his membership-number was 2826493.

By profession, Kritzinger occupied himself with astronomy, ballistics, climate, mental and physical health, meteorology, paranormal phenomena and natural sciences. In his work, he frequently was in charge, he frequently published in professional journals, edited and wrote books (which frequently were meant for the public in general), published books and magazines, founded societies and was president of a number of them. Further, he cooperated with others in the writing of books or wrote contributions, held lectures and frequently wrote letters to newspapers about the themes he studied.

I. The years until 1945

Bothkamp observatory
Bothkamp observatory

After finishing gymnasium in 1906, Kritzinger started to study astronomy at the philosophy faculty of the Berlin Friedrich Wilhelm university and in Kiel. In this period, he observed a.o. comets and wrote articles about his observations, which were published in e.g. Astronomische Nachrichten. On November 23,1911, he successfully graduated, His dissertation was entitled Über die Bewegung des Roten Fleckes auf dem Planeten Jupiter.
From 1912 until its close-down in 1914, Kritzinger, in his capacity as astronomer, was in charge of the observatory in Bothkamp near Kiel, founded in 1869/70 by chamberlain Friedrich Gustav von Bülow, where he already worked for some time. On March 29, 1914, he discovered a comet, in the beginning listed as comet 1914a, later as comet-1914-II Kritzinger, for which he received the
Donohoe Comet Medal, a memory medal, which between 1889 and 1950 was given to a.o. people who discovered a comet. In his memoirs about his work as a ballistic, Kritzinger wrote that during the negotiations with the American occupying authorities in 1945/46, this decoration was useful. However, he did not mention the nature of these negotiations.
In the summer of 1914, Kritzinger became editor of the astronomic monthly Sirius - Zeitschrift für populäre Astronomie - Centralorgan für alle Freunde und Förderer der Himmelskunde, founded in 1867. In 1915, its title was changed into Sirius - Rundschau der gesamten Sternforschung für Freunde der Himmelskunde und Fachastronomen. Kritzinger was editor until 1926.
In the years until 1914, astronomic treatises by Kritzinger were also published by the British Astronomical Association and the Société Astronomique de France.
In 1917, Kritzinger founded the DARGESO, the Deutsche Arbeitsgemeinschaft für Sonnenbeobachtung, a branch of the GEDELIA (Gesellschaft der Liebhaberastronomen). From 1920 to 1926, he was president of the INGEDELIA (Internationale Gesellschaft der Liebhaberastronomen).
In 1926, the four-volume series Natur und Mensch - Die Wissenschaften und Ihre Anwendung, which contained a.o. astronomy, social sciences and applied natural sciences, was published in Berlin. Kritzinger had co-operated in the writing of the volumes 1 and 4. Under the editorship of Woldemar Klein, Buch der Natur - Ein allgemeinverständliche Einführung in die wichtigsten Tatsachen der Naturforschung was published in Leipzig in 1935. This book, which covered natural sciences, geography and atlantics, contained a contribution by Kritzinger.

Astronomy, 1908-1935


Various articles in Astronomische Nachrichten.


Über die Bewegung des Roten Fleckes auf dem Planeten Jupiter - Sternwarte des Herrn von Bülow auf Bothkamp bei Kirchbarkau (Holstein). Berlin.


Die Errungenschaften der Astronomie - nach den Originalarbeiten der führenden Forscher, dargestellt von dr. H.H. Kritzinger, Astronom der Sternwarte Bothkamp (bei Kirchbarkau, Holstein). Weimar.


Entdeckung eines neues Kometen 1914a. In: Astronomische Nachrichten #197, April, p.381-384.

(redactie) Sirius - Zeitschrift für populäre Astronomie (from 1915: Sirius - ). Berlin.


Die veränderlichen Sterne - Anleitung zur Beobachtung und Berechnung ihres Lichtwechsels. Leipzig, together with Paul Guthnick.


Contribution in Sternbüchlein für 1917. Stuttgart, together with Robert Henseling.


Aufleuchten des neuen Sterns im Adler, das astronomische Ereignis von 1918. In: Das neue Universum, #40.


(editor) Astronomische Abende - Allgemein verständliche Unterhaltungen über Ergebnisse der Himmels-Erforschung. Leipzig, 8th edition, originally written by Hermann Joseph Klein.  


Unser nächtster Stern: die Sonne. In: Das neue Universum, #42. 


(editor) Die Wunder der Sternenwelt - Ein Ausflug in den Himmelsraum. Berlijn, 7th, revised edition, originally written by Otto Ule.


Analyse der Sonnenfleckenperioden & ihre Bedeutung. In: Vierteljahrsschrift der Astronomischen Gesellschaft, Leipzig, #59.


Wahn und Wissenschaft von Weltenraum. In: Die Bergstadt, #2. Leipzig.

Anblick der Glanznacht. In: Die Bergstadt, # 8. Leipzig.

Das Rätsel von Ebbe und Flut. In: Rur-Blumen - Blätter für Heimatgeschichte, Unterhaltung und Belehrung. Beilage zum Jülicher Kreisblatt, #38.


Bilder aus dem Weltenraum: Sonne und Planeten; Im Dienste der Hans Bredow-Schule der deutschen Rundfunkgesellschaften. Leipzig.

Natur und Mensch - Die Wissenschaften und Ihre Anwendung. #1: Weltraum und Erde. Berlin, together with Carl Walther Schmidt.

Natur und Mensch - Die Wissenschaften und Ihre Anwendung. #4: Die angewandten Naturwissenschaften. Berlin, together with a.o. Carl Walther Schmidt.


Beobachtung des Vorüberganges des Merkur vor der Sonnenscheibe 1927 November 10. Together with a.o. J. Plasmann (Münster) and J. Möller and W. Luther (Düsseldorf).

Spaziergänge durch den Weltraum - eine Astronomie für jedermann. Berlin.


Stellung der Erde im Weltall. In: In Reiche des Wissens, #1.


Buch der Natur - Ein allgemeinverständliche Einführung in die wichtigsten Tatsachen der Naturforschung. Weimar, Woldemar Klein, ed.


With intervals, Kritzinger worked as a ballistic for 50 years. After the close-down in 1914 of the Bothkamp observatory, he
volunteered for the battle front, but his physical condition was not sufficient. In 1914, by intervention of one of his former teachers, he became a scientific co-operator at the Optical Institute C.P. Goerz AG in Berlin-Friedenau, which in World War I produced optical instruments, meant for the army. At Goerz AG, Kritzinger was occupied with matters, dealing with periscopes, and ballistic problems in bombardments. 
From August 3, 1915, to December 30, 1918, Kritzinger was a scientific assistant at the Artillerie-Prüfungs-Kommission in Berlin and occupied himself with the ballistic testing and finetuning of artillery, which he characterized in 1922 as working in the frontier areas of astronomy (ballistics) and meteorology.[3] Prior to his work as a scientific assistant, he had to become familiar with the army discipline. He suffered from the unhygienic conditions of the barracks and was physically unable to carry out drill. In the course of the years, he nevertheless reached the rank of captain. 

In 1917, Kritzinger invented the "Balta-seconds", a ballistic, atmospheric correction factor, which proved to be fruitful during the battles in early 1918.  
In the summer of 1918, Kritzinger's book Schuß und Schall in Wetter und Wind - Ballistisch-meteorologische Einführung in das Tageseinflußwesen beim Schießen der Artillerie was published in Leipzig, in which he discussed a.o. the "Balta-seconds". His superior considered it so important, that he proposed the Ministry of Education and Culture to appoint Kritzinger as professor. The Ministry however replied that Kritzinger was too young. Kritzinger himself had the idea that he was not appointed as professor because the nomination was not supported by an important politician.
For Kritzinger, the end of World War I and the subsequent disarmament of the German army meant the end of his work for the Artillerie-Prüfungs-Kommission. He maintained contact with his superiors. who estimated him highly.
In the first half of the twenties, Kritzinger worked in Dresden as a meteorologist at the Landeswetterwarte, studying ballistic problems. From 1926 to May 31, 1929, he worked as astronomer and meteorologist at the Marine Institute in Wilhelmshaven. During his application, a high government position was promised to him, but as time went by, nothing happened. Eventually, it became clear to Kritzinger that this perspective had been a pretext in order to get him contracted. It was not possible for him to fight this because he lacked money to pay the costs and because there were no witnesses who could confirm his claim. In 1929, he therefore resigned. In his testimonial, he was praised for his skills and his talent as a teacher in ballistics. 
The article Wetterkunde für den Seestrategie, with which he won the first prize in a competition, organized by the Reichswehr-Ministerium, dates from the period in which Kritzinger worked in Wilhelmshaven. 
From 1929 to 1933, Kritzinger worked as a ballistic for Rheinmetall in Düsseldorf, a company which at that time produced artillery. In the first three months of his work, he suffered from cardiac complaints. By the end of 1931, the production of Rheinmetall had to be cut back. Kritzinger did not want to continue his work at the factory. On December 31, 1931, he resigned and went to Berlin to work as a ballistic.
By the end of 1933, Kritzinger started to work as a ballistic for the Luftfahrt-Ministerium. In autumn 1934, he was contracted by the Heereswaffenamt. On October 5, 1934 he was put in charge of Baphomet, a ballistic-photogrammetric section. The research in Baphomet was like the research in the former Artillerie-Prüfungs-Kommission. In Ohne Einschießen und ohne Beobachtung..., Kritzinger wrote that his aim was to improve this research. On December 12, 1942, his superiors expressed their gratitude and esteem for the progress of artillery which Kritzinger had accomplished for more than 25 years and for his work in Baphomet, which made it possible to solve a multitude of ballistic problems. The research of Baphomet also dealt with ballistic problems concerning the V2-missiles. Due to air raids, the Baphomet-office was evacuated twice. On July 17, 1945, Baphomet was closed.
In the period in which Kritzinger was in charge of Baphomet, Artillerie und Ballistik in Stichworten was published,  a lexicon which he had written together with the German war historian dr. Friedrich Stuhlmann. It contained descriptions in English, French, German, Italian and Spanish of basic ballistic items. In 1943, Primärfunktionen was published in Nuremberg, a book on ballistics, written by Kritzinger himself.

Ballistics, 1918-1943


Review of C. Cranz's Lehrbuch der Ballistik in Die Naturwissenschaften, #42.

Schuß und Schall in Wetter und Wind - Ballistisch-meteorologische Einführung in das Tageseinflußwesen beim Schießen der Artillerie. Leipzig.


Wetterkunde für den Seestragegie. In: Marine Rundschau.


(editor, together with dr. Friedrich Stuhlmann) Artillerie und Ballistik in Stichworten - herausgegeben von Dr. Hans-Hermann Kritzinger, Astronom und Ballistiker, und Dr. Friedrich Stuhlmann, Oberst a.D; unter Mitarbeit von Wilhelm Berlin. Berlin.


Primärfunktionen. Nuremberg.


Influences of cosmic and earthly forces on man and mankind
In the course of his life, Kritzinger, as appears from his books, looked for scientific answers to the question how the fate of individuals and nations is influenced. Basing himself upon his research and personal experiences, he was convinced that atmospheric circumstances, paranormal phenomena, planetary cycles and sun spots had a concrete influence on everyday life, mental and physical health and the course of history, which according to him was subject to patterns, which could be observed in the periodicity of events. 
Kritzinger's interest in the backgrounds of everyday life and history dates from his early youth. In 1895, his private teacher gave him a booklet, entitled Mathematische Kurzweil, as a Christmas present. It contained mathematics. At the end, the reader was asked to calculate a horoscope, with which the fate could be read from the stars. The at that time eight year old Kritzinger was so impressed, that he more and more studied the stars and a series of phenomena, among which earth rays, astrology, atmospheric circumstances, clairvoyance, prophecy and sun spots.
In 1911, the year in which he graduated in astronomy, Der Stern der Weisen - astronomisch-kritische Studie, the first publication in which Kritzinger treated astrologic and esoteric themes, was published in Gütersloh. Its main subject was the planet Jupiter, as in his dissertation. In Der Stern der Weisen, Kritzinger did not discuss traditional or popular astrology, but the Great Conjunctions of Jupiter and Saturn, described in ancient astrological books. Following the astronomer Johann Kepler, Kritzinger stated that the star which the Three Kings had seen and which they considered to be a sign of the newborn King of the Jews, actually was one of the three Jupiter-Saturn conjunctions in 7 B.C. 
In the years in which he worked in the Bothkamp observatory, Kritzinger Von Bülow's writings about the divining-rod, which were kept there, and frontier studies of the Russian Councillor Alexander Aksákow, who in 1874 founded the monthly Psychische Studien - Monatliche Zeitschrift vorzüglich der Untersuchung der wenig gekannten Phänomene des Seelenlebens gewidmet, of which Kritzinger would be editor from January 1922 to March 1923.

Advertisements Mysterien von Sonne und Seele
Advertisements in 
Mysterien von Sonne und Seele

In 1921 and 1922 Kritzinger was in charge of the Berlin settlement of the Verlag Universitas Buch und Kunst GmbH, which also had settlements in Görlitz, Leipzig and Utrecht.[5] The last pages of Mysterien von Sonne und Seele - Psychische Studien zur Klärung der okkulten Probleme (Berlin, 1922, Verlag Universitas Buch und Kunst GmbH) contained advertisements for Psychische Studien and Sirius which were edited by Kritzinger, for the INGEDELIA presided by Kritzinger and for the Psychische-Studien-Gesellschaft, presided by Oberst a.D. Konrad Schuppe. In 1922, Kritzinger was also in charge of the literature section of the Jahresschau Deutsche Arbeit in Dresden.
From the preface to Mysterien von Sonne und Seele, it becomes clear that Kritzinger for a number of years was a member of the Deutsche Okkulstische Gesellschaft. In that period,he held a number of lectures about paranormal phenomena. Some of them were published in Mysterien von Sonne und Seele. Later in 1922, Magische Kräfte - Geheimnisse der menschlichen Seele, in which it was mentioned on the title page that Kritzinger was the publisher of Psychische Studien, was published in Berlin. In Magische Kräfte, dedicated to the German physician/parapsychologist dr. Albert Freiherr von Schrenck-Notzing, Kritzinger described his own experiences in the occult field and the results of the congress for psychical research in Copenhagen in autumn 1921. Readers of Mysterien von Sonne und Seele and Magische Kräfte were invited to send their questions to the Psychische-Studien-Gesellschaft.[6] 
When Kritzinger in January 1922 became the editor of Psychische Studien, he found himself, as he said it, in the same situation as when he in 1914 became the editor of Sirius: he became in charge of a magazine which was in its fiftieth year of existence. He hoped that his experience as editor of Sirius and co-operator of the leading German astronomic press would contribute to the progress of Psychische Studien, which he qualified as a neutral-scientific magazine. In that context, he wrote that contributions to Psychische Studien should contain a summary and a bibliography.[7]
In March 1923, Kritzinger resigned. In a farewell editorial, he wrote that his critical attitude as editor was not in vain, but that he had not realized the progress he had in mind.[8] The real reason for Kritzinger to resign seems to have been a conflict with Oswalt Mutze Verlag in Leipzig, who printed the January issue of volume 1923 of Psychische Studien without Kritzinger's approval, who at that time was ill. In an editorial in the February issue, Kritzinger wrote that he had different ideas about the contents of the previous issue and apologized for the many printer's errors.[9]  
In 1923, Kritzinger became a private teacher in the Weiße Hirsch sanatory, near Dresden. From that period dates a treatise on dementia praecox.
Kritzinger was convinced of the influence of cosmic and earthly forces on the life of individuals and nations. In 1924, Der Pulsschlag der Welt - Schicksalstage des Menschen und Schicksalsjahre der Menschheit - Allgemeinverständliche Einführung in die Periodenlehre mit Beispielen aus dem Leben des Einzelnen und der Weltgeschichte was published in Kempten in Allgäu. On the cover, it was mentioned that the book was written by "Dr. H.H. Kritzinger, Astronom".
Todesstrahlen und Wünschelrute - Beiträge zur Schicksalskunde (Leipzig, 1929) was the result of 25 years of literary activity in gathering knowledge about fate and factors which had influence on the fate of individuals and nations. In this book, Kritzinger wrote about a.o. astrology. He extensively described his doubts about traditional, geocentric astrology and stated that from a scientific point of view he preferred heliocentric astrology, its value more or less being proved by the Swiss astrologer Karl Ernst Krafft, who tried to validate astrology by means of statistic.
In 1933, a book was published in Dresden, in which Kritzinger, basing himself upon his own investigations, described attempts to counteract pathologic influences of earth rays.

Cosmic and earthly forces, 1911-1933


Der Stern der Weisen - astronomisch-kritische Studie. Gütersloh.


Psychische Studien - Monatliche Zeitschrift vorzüglich der Untersuchung der wenig gekannten Phänomene des Seelenlebens gewidmet. Berlijn, editor from January 1922 to March 1923, together with Hans Freimark and dr. med. Paul Sünner.

Mysterien von Sonne und Seele - Psychische Studien zur Klärung der okkulten Probleme. Berlin.

Magische Kräfte - Geheimnisse der menschlichen Seele. Berlin.


Der Pulsschlag der Welt - Schicksalstage des Menschen und Schicksalsjahre der Menschheit. Allgemeinverständliche Einführung in die Periodenlehre mit Beispielen aus dem Leben des Einzelnen und der Weltgeschichte. Kempten.

Zwei neue physiologisch wichtige Perioden bei Dementia praecox.


Todesstrahlen und Wünschelrute - Beiträge zur Schicksalskunde. Leipzig.


Erdstrahlen, Reizstreifen und Wünschelrute : Neue Versuche zur Abwendung krankmachender Einflüsse auf Grund eigener Forschungen volkstümlich dargestellt. Dresden (reprinted in 2012 by Sarastro GmbH, Paderborn).


II. The years after 1945
Afte the capitulation of Germany on May 8, 1945, Artillerie und Ballistik in Stichworten was banned. 
From September 1945 to January 1946, Kritzinger was admitted to a hospital. At first, his physicians thought that he suffered from parathypus, but it became clear that a pancreas' disease was at stake.
On July 24, 1947, Kritzinger was denazificated. This was expedited by an American captain. Kritzinger was classed as a follower, for which he was charged with a penalty of RM 100. He also had to pay the trial costs (RM 60). He moved to Freudenstadt. In 1951, he held a lecture on bioclimatic, which rose the attention of the Freudenstadt Health Office. In 1953, he moved to Karlsruhe, later to Achern, where he died on December 2, 1968.
In the fifties, Kritzinger regularly was asked to re-edit Artillerie und Ballistik in Stichworten; in German army circles, this book was considered to be indispensable to the rebuilding of the German army. A reprint never became realized. In 1954, the Wehrwissenschaftliche Rundschau published the article Rakete als Träger von Atomköpfe.
In May 1954, it was tried to offer Kritzinger a job in the artillery. Because of the lack of money, this was not realized. In 1957, on behalf of the research office of the German ministry of Defense, general Vorwald send a telegram to Kritzinger in which he congratulated him with his seventieth birthday. He expressed his admiration for the many years in which Kritzinger worked as a ballistic and felt sorry for the fact that Kritzinger in his old age suffered from worry and poverty. In fact, Kritzinger only had a small pension, despite a court procedure.
In 1959, Panzertheorien und Anwendung was published. In 1967, the Artillerie-Rundschau published Kritzinger's memoirs about his work as a ballistic, entitled Ohne Einschießen und ohne Beobachtung... Fünfzig Jahre Ballistiker. Kritzinger had written Ohne Einschießen und ohne Beobachtung... on request of the editors of the Artillerie-Rundschau. In the preface, Kritzinger was introduced as "the inventor of the Balta-seconds".
In the years after 1945, Kritzinger continued to do research on astronomy and on cosmic and earthly factors which influenced the fate of individuals and nations. He wrote countless articles and letters. In 1949, the Astrologische Monatshefte - Fachzeitschrift für theoretische und angewandte Astrologie published an article by Kritzinger, entitled Ein transplutonischer Planet? In 1954, 1957 and 1959 the Nachrichtenblatt der Astronomische Zentralstelle published contributions in which Kritzinger argued the existence of a planet outside Pluto's orbit. In 1963, Die Sterne and Hamburger Hefte published Kritzinger's article Hypothetische transneptunische Planeten, in which he wrote a.o. a hypothetical planet, named Hades.
In 1951, the book Zur Philosophie der Überwelt - Ursprung und Überwindung der Antinomien was published in TübingenIn
1954, Kritzinger gave a lecture for a geopathy-group, founded in1951, who occupied itself with correspondences between earth rays and diseases, entitled Vorschläge und Gedanken zu zukünftiger produktiver Forschungsarbeit im Rahmen des Arbeitskreises. In 1954, the Allgemeine Homeopatische Zeitung published his treatise Erkrankungen der Atemwege und Aerosol-Therapie mit Meerwasser.
The twelfth issue of volume 1956 of the Wehrtechnische Monatshefte contained a contribution by Kritzinger, entitled Ein neues Verfahren zur Auswertung von Treffbildern.
The Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung published a number of letters by Kritzinger about precursory and sensitivities for weather. In June 1967, this newspaper wrote about the eightieth birthday of "professor Hans Hermann Kritzinger, the Karlsruher astronom and bio-climate-scientist, who intensively studies correspondences between health and weather circumstances".
In issue 2 of volume 1969 of the astrologic quarterly Hamburger Hefte, a necrology about Kritzinger was published, written by Ludwig Rudolph, the founder and editor of Hamburger Hefte. Rudolph wrote that Kritzinger was an astronomer and listed titles of some of his letters. In issue 4 of volume 1973, tables of Ascendants were published, compiled by Kritzinger.



Ein transplutonischer Planet? In: Astrologische Monatshefte - Fachzeitschrift für theoretische und angewandte Astrologie.


Transpluto: hypothetische Elemente. In: Nachrichtenblatt der Astronomische Zentralstelle, #8.


Ein neues Verfahren zur Auswertung von Treffbildern. In: Wehrtechnische Monatshefte, #12.


Transpluto: hypothetische Elemente. In: Nachrichtenblatt Zentralstelle, #11.


Transpluto: hypothetische elliptische Elemente. In: Nachrichtenblatt Zentralstelle, #13.


Hypothetische transneptunische Planete. In: Die Sterne, #1 and Hamburger Hefte, #3.


Weltharmonik und Wittes Lehre. In: Hamburger Hefte, #4.


Aszendenten-Tabelle. In: Hamburger Hefte, #3.




Rakete als Träger von Atomköpfe. In: Wehrwissenschaftliche Rundschau, January, p.29.


Panzertheorien und Anwendung.


Ohne Einschießen und ohne Beobachtung... Fünfzig Jahre Ballistiker 1915-65. In: Artillerie-Rundschau.




Zur Philosophie der Überwelt - Ursprung und Überwindung der Antinomien. Tübingen.


Erkrankungen der Atemwege und Aerosol-Therapie mit Meerwasser. In: Allgemeine Homeopatische Zeitung.

Vorschläge und Gedanken zu zukünftiger produktiver Forschungsarbeit im Rahmen des Arbeitskreises. Lecture.


The Centuries
In 1961, Kritzinger told the Englishman Ellic Howe, who investigated the role of astrology in Nazi-Germany and the life and work of Krafft, who in 1940 wrote national-socialist propaganda, based upon the Centuries, that he, Kritzinger, in December 1939 in a conversation with Goebbels on the Centuries, said that he did not predict the future. He only occupied himself with the question whether or not old predictions were fulfilled. For that reason, he was interested in prophetic literature in general and most notably in Nostradamus.
The information which Kritzinger gave to Goebbels was different from what really was at stake, i.e. at least in the version which he told to Howe, 22 years later. 

Kritzinger's attitude towards occultism
Kritzinger was not an occultist in the traditional meaning. One could even ask if he was an occultist. As can be read in his publications, he was strongly influenced by the ideas of the German philosopher Immanuel Kant (1724-1804), such as his idea that everything that surrounds us, is nothing but appearance. In the light of Kant's ideas, Kritzinger stated that a number of occult phenomena actually are not occult, but the result of sometimes subtile cheating. When he started to work as editor of Psychische Studien, he wrote in an editorial, published in the January issue of volume 49 (1922) that his attitude towards occultism was of a neutral-scientific nature, based upon a Christian-oriented form of yoga. When he was with yogis, he learned more in a couple of hours than with psychics in a number of years. He explicitly wrote that he would not take part in the opposition animism-spiritualism and, like the editor, had no intention to advertise in Psychische Studien for occultism.
In his preface to Mysterien von Sonne und Seele, Kritzinger wrote that countless views were subject to change. He referred to the outdating of the ideas about "mystic paranoia" and the idea that there were no glaciers in tropical regions. In his eyes, the era in which he lived, was an era in which dogmas would have to make way for concrete facts and in which the truth would be recognized, which would result in the end of dark occultism, as far as occultism was the result of cheating, ignorance or insufficient knowledge. In his preface to Magische Kräfte, he wrote that he hoped that his efforts in the so-called occult field would be fruitful. Basing himself upon his own experiences, he was convinced of the influence of earth rays, atmospheric circumstances and sun spots on the fate of individuals and nations.
Kritzingers last contribution to Psychische Studien, published in the March-issue of volume 50 (1923) was an article about yoga, entitled Von der Bedeutung des Yogha für unser praktisches Leben. In his farewell, he wrote that with this article, he wanted to express his conviction that the occupation with occultism had no other purpose than the phrasing in contemporary words of age-old wisdom and to make this comprehensible for the troubled mind.

The beginning of Kritzinger's investigation of the Centuries
In Magische Kräfte, its preface dating from December 1921, Kritzinger wrote that he occupied himself with Nostradamus for more than seven years, which means that his interest in Nostradamus dates from before 1914. In Mysterien von Sonne und Seele, in the chapter Prophetie und Perioden der Weltgeschichte, which also dates from 1921, Kritzinger wrote that those predictions of Nostradamus which without any doubt were fulfilled, had driven him to the study of the great field of occultism in the past seven years.[11] 
Chances are that Kritzinger's interest in the Centuries dates from 1911, the year in which he graduated in astronomy and in which Die Stern der Weisen was published. The preface to Die Stern der Weisen was written by dr. Wilhelm Faber, from whom in 1922 a revised edition was published of the translation of the Centuries, made in 1850 by Edouard Roesch. It is not clear if Faber in 1911 was interested in the Centuries or drew Kritzinger's attention to them. 

In three of his pre-war publications, Kritzinger discussed Nostadamus and the Centuries: Mysterien von Sonne und Seele, Magische Kräfte and Todesstrahlen und Wünschelrute
In Mysterien von Sonne und Seele, Kritzinger followed the patterns and explanations which Loog the previous year had presented in Die Weissagungen des Nostradamus and he compared Loog's theories and patterns with his own patterns about the future of the world and especially England. Kritzinger expected England's downfall in most early the second half of the twentieth century. In Magische Kräfte, he more or less summarized what he had written about the Centuries in Mysterien von Sonne und Seele.
From Mysterien von Sonne und Seele, it becomes clear that Kritzinger extensively corresponded with Loog on Loog's theories about the way Nostradamus worked, and that he had the intention to publish a new Century-comment, written by Loog.[12] This intention however was not realized. From Todesstrahlen und Wünschelrute, it becomes clear that Kritzinger in the course of the years dissociated himself from Loog's ideas in Die Weissagungen des Nostradamus, which he characterized as being based upon too bold suppositions that would discredit Nostradamus. In Todesstrahlen und Wünschelrute, Kritzinger discussed the various cycle theories which dr. Christian Wöllner in 1926 in Das Mysterium des Nostradamus had described, in the context of a discussion of the meaning of the Great Conjunctions of Jupiter and Saturn, which he already discussed in 1911 in Die Stern der Weisen.[13] 
Despite his interest in Nostradamus and the Centuries, Kritzinger never wrote an entire book about it.

Propaganda, based upon the Centuries
In both world wars, Kritzinger used the Centuries for propaganda purposes. In 1914, he wrote a flyer for German troops in France in which he discussed quatrain 10-51 in order to boost their morale.[14] In December 1939, he got involved in the production of national-socialist propaganda, based upon the Centuries. In the late autumn of 1939, a.o. the wife of dr. Paul Joseph Goebbels, the minister of people's enlightenment and propaganda in Nazi-Germany, drew his attention to some lines in Mysterien von Sonne und Seele, in which Kritzinger had quoted Loog, who supposed that Nostradamus in quatrain 03-57 had predicted crises in 1939 for both England and Poland. In late autumn 1939, Kritzinger's discussion of Loog's comment upon quatrain 03-57 (as well as Loog's comment itself) was linked to the German invasion in Poland, some months before, and the British declaration of war to Germany. On this website, it is supposed that Goebbels ordered Kritzinger to look for a Nostradamus-expert who could comment from a propagandistic point of view. Kritzinger contacted Loog, who refused, and next proposed to approach Krafft, an old friend. The contact between Krafft and Kritzinger dated from most lately 1925 and lasted until most certainly the summer of 1940. After Krafft's moving to Berlin in January 1940, Krafft and Kritzinger frequently met each other in the house of Schuppe, who meanwhile was the president of the Deutsche metapsychische Gesellschaft (a continuation of the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Wissenschaftlichen Okkultismus), mentioned by Krafft on page XXX of the Einführung zu den "Prophéties de Maistre Michel Nostradamus" (Frankfurt am Main, 1940). They discussed many quatrains from a propagandistic point of view. In 1961, Kritzinger told Howe that both he and Krafft had the opinion that it would be against the spirit of Nostradamus if they would pervert quatrain texts. Therefore, they decided only to use quatrain texts for propaganda purposes if these texts by themselves would have a striking significance, given the actual situation. However, Kritzinger and Krafft not always agreed with each other. Kritzinger thought that Krafft often went too far in his comments, whereas Krafft accused Kritzinger to filch his ideas.[15] 
In a letter, dated on May f27, 1940 and directed to dr. Rahn, second in command of the Information IV section of the German Ministry of Foreign Affairs, his employee dr. Werner Wilmanns wrote that according to Krafft, one dr. Seifert, working in the Ministry of Propaganda, was occupied with the production of a Nostradamus-brochure, written by Kritzinger.[16] I have no information about the title of this brochure. It might be the brochure Der Seher von Salon, volume 38 in the series Informations-Schriften, a series of propaganda brochures, issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In Der Seher von Salon, which in the beginning of 1941 was brought into circulation, Kritzinger included parts of Mysterien von Sonne und Seele, to which he added elements which in one way or another supported the "German cause" and in which he translated and edited quatrain text in that sense that he inserted propagandistic elements of his comments in the translation of quatrain texts.[17] According to a memorandum of the Information IVb section, dated on January 17, 1941, published on, Kritzinger has edited brochures which were spread abroad by the Ministry of Propaganda and which were competitive with the brochures, written by Krafft.

The Aktion-Heß
In 1941, Kritzinger was arrested due to the Aktion-Heß, a raid among astrologers and occultists in Germany in June 1941, after the flight to England in May 1941 of Rudolf Heß, Hitler's deputy.[18] It is not known how long Kritzinger was in custody or under which conditions he was released.
By the end of 1941, Kritzinger was part of the Arbeitsgruppe-SP (SP: Siderisches Pendel), a group of occultists who by order of the Kriegsmarine tried to locate the positions of hostile convoys and submarines by means of divining rods. This had to enable the Kriegsmarine to attack them. Kritzinger extensively had described the working of the divining-rod. Perhaps this was reason for the Kriegsmarine to involve him in the activities of the Arbeitsgruppe-SP. By the end of 1942, the Arbeitsgruppe-SP was disbanded due to a lack of success. I do not know for how long Kritzinger was a member of this group.

Appointed as professor
On January 30, 1943, Kritzinger got a telegram from Großadmiral Erich Raeder, who congratulated him with the appointment as professor. In the article Verdiente Männer der Wissenschaft vom Führer ausgezeichnet, published in the edition of February 1, 1943 of the Völkischer Beobachter and in the article Der Führer ehrt verdiente Wissenschaftler, published in page 3 of the edition of February 2, 1943 of the Berliner Morgenpost, the readers were informed that Hitler, on the occasion of the tenth birthday of his appointment as Reichskanzler, had decided to appoint a number of scientists as professor, because of their contributions in solving warfare problems. The list of names of scientists, most of them leading physicians, also contained the name of Dr. Phil. H.-H. Kritzinger, living in Berlin-Steglitz. On July 10, 1943, Reichsleiter Martin Bormann wrote to NSDAP-leader Alfred Rosenberg that Kritzinger was nominated by the Supreme Command of the Kriegsmarine because of his activities in the Arbeitsgruppe-SP. In the article in the Berliner Morgenpost however, Kritzinger's name was preceded by the names of leading officers in the arm industry. Given this context and given Kritzinger's own information about the importance of the "Baltaseconds" and the failed attempt in 1918 to have him appointed as professor, it looks more plausible that Kritzinger was nominated because of his skills as a ballistic. This nomination might very well have been the result of the gratitude and respect for his efforts in the field of artillery and ballistics, expressed by his superiors by the end of 1942.

The years after 1945
After World War II, Kritzinger maintained the title of professor. The books which he wrote before World War II, were not published again. At present, his astronomic and climatologic publications are still studied, quoted and discussed. In 2012, Sarastro GmbH, seated in Paderborn, published a reprint of Erdstrahlen, Reizstreifen und Wünschelrute, dating from 1933.
After World War II, as far as I know, Kritzinger did not publish again about Nostradamus. In the fifties however, given a remark in the Nachtrag to the fourth edition of Nostradamus - Der Prophet der Weltgeschichte (Berlin, 1960), he advised the author, dr. N. Alexander Centurio (the pseudonym of dr. phil. Alexander Max Centgraf, who in 1940/41 wrote the text of a national-socialist brochure, its Dutch translation entitled Voorspellingen die uitgekomen zijn... (Arnhem, 1941). In the Nachtrag, Centgraf referred to Kritzinger as follows: [...] den Altmeister der Nostradamusforschung, Prof. Dr. H.H. Kritzinger, Karlsruhe.
Various versions about Kritzinger's involvement in the (origin of) national-socialist propaganda, based upon the Centuries and Century-comments, circulate. In 1961/62, Kritzinger told Howe which part he had in this propaganda.[19]
This information differs in quite essential points with what is presented in this short biography. Perhaps the then 73-year old professor wanted this chapter in his life to remain closed.


Kritzinger and national-socialism
The question rises why Kritzinger, who seriously investigated paranormal phenomena and who had a strong interest in Nostradamus, whom he qualified as the master of all magicians, used the Centuries and Century-comments for propaganda purposes. One can only guess the answer. In Ohne Einschießen und ohne Beobachtung..., Kritzinger wrote nothing about his involvement in the (origin of) national-socialist propaganda, based upon the Centuries and Century-comments. I have no information about whether or not these activities were discussed during Kritzinger's denazification. In Ohne Einschießen und ohne Beobachtung..., Kritzinger wrote that a conversation with naval officers, by the end of 1928, against his habit resulted in a discussion of occult matters and that the question was discussed whether or not there was something like genuine prophecy.
Magische Kräfte
contains a picture of a page of the 1668-Amsterdam-edition of the Centuries on which quatrain 10-100 is printed, the quatrain in which a period of supremacy for more than 300 years is predicted for England. The letterpress reads: Die interessanteste Seite aus den Prophezeiungen des Nostradamus. In his comment upon this quatrain, Kritzinger wrote that shortly after 2000 A.D., the fate of England would change radically. He expected, basing himself upon the Centuries (i.e. Loog's comment) that Germany would rise again and would put an end to the Versailles Treaty.[20] These remarks might point to a patriotic, anti-British attitude which might have brought Kritzinger to hit Germany's enemies with the announcement that according to the Centuries, the downfall of England and the victory of Germany were imminent.
In Ohne Einschießen und ohne Beobachtung..., Kritzinger wrote that his membership of the NSDAP, which dates from May 1, 1933, was compulsive; after the seize of power in 1933, those who had knowledge about the secrets of the Luftwaffe had to join the NSDAP. Further, he emphasized that after the elections in November 1933 for the Reichstag, in which the NSDAP acquired 92% of the seats, the labour laws were revised, which in spring 1934 influenced the negotiations with him about close cooperation with the Heereswaffenamt.
Kritzinger has written nothing about whether or not he approved national-socialist ideology.


De Meern, the Netherlands, April 5, 2009,
T.W.M. van Berkel
updated on January 8, 2012



Kritzinger on Nostradamus and the Centuries

Kritzinger-1922a (1921)
Kritzinger-1922a (1921)
Kritzinger-1922b (1921)
Kritzinger-1941 (1940)
Kritzinger-1941 (1940)


The author expresses his thanks to the Deutsche Nationalbibliothek and the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin for sending biographic and bibliographic information on prof. dr. Kritzinger and to Bernhardt Rengert, the author of Pfarrersohn, Astronom und Astrologe Geboren in Boitzenburg: Hans-Hermann Kritzinger, published in 2006 in the German Nordkurier.


The titles, places and year of issue of the mentioned authors are listed in the bibliography.

  1. Information about Kritzinger's family, his marriage and the years in which certain events took place, originates from a.o.:
    - Berliner Adressbücher 1799-1943 (;
    Degener, H.A.L. (ed.): Wer ist's? Unsere Zeitgenossen. 10. Ausgabe, 1935;
    - Kritzinger, prof. dr. H.-H.: Ohne Einschießen und ohne Beobachtung... Fünfzig Jahre Ballistiker 1915-65. Achern, 1967 (Bundesarchiv, N 625/197);
    - Kürschners deutscher Gelehrten-Kalender. Jg. 4, 1931 and Jg. 7, 1950;
    - Poggendorff, J.C.: Biographisch-literarisches Handwörterbuch, Bd V, Teil 1 (1925) and Bd VI, Teil 2 (1937);
    - Rengert, B.: Pfarrersohn, Astronom und Astrologe geboren in Boitzenburg: Hans-Hermann Kritzinger. In: Nordkurier, Neubrandenburg, June 26, 2006;
    - Rudolph, L.: Prof. Dr. Hans-Hermann Kritzinger. In: Hamburger Hefte 1969, #2.
    The (non-dated) portrait of Kritzinger was originally published on

    Kritzinger wrote many books and articles. A complete listing is beyond the purpose of this biography. The listings in this biography are meant as an anthology. A more complete listing can be found on [text

  2. The online-catalogue of the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin contains a number of titles of sermons by Johannes Kritzinger. Some of them were published in the Berliner Sonntagsblatt; others were published by the Evangelische Trostbund in Berlin. Until 1926, Johannes Kritzinger was listed in the Berliner Adressbuch as a Court and Dome preacher. From 1927 until 1932, he was listed as a retired preacher. From 1933, his name no longer occurs in the Berliner Adressbuch. According to Sozialreform als Bürger- und Christenplicht (Bosse, Verlag Kohlkammer, 2005), Johannes Kritzinger died in 1937. [text   

  3. Psychische Studien, volume 49 (1922), January, p.1. [text]

  4. Kritzinger-1929, p.V-VII. [text]

  5. Source: Berliner Adressbuch, 1921 and 1922. In the tenth edition (1935) of Degener's Wer ist's?, it is mentioned that Kritzinger was director of a publishing company in 1919. The name of this company is not given. Nothing about this is mentioned in the volumes 1918, 1919 and 1920 of the Berliner Adressbuch
    The Verlag Universitas Buch und Kunst GmbH was founded on December 1, 1920. Originally, this company had settlements in Berlin and Utrecht. According to Kritzinger's preface to Mysterien von Sonne und Seele, the settlement in Utrecht was directed by M. van der Staal, the settlement in Görlitz (the Görlitzer Nachrichten und Anzeiger), was directed by Emil Glauber. The catalogues of the Deutsche Nationalbibliothek and the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin contain titles of publications, published in 1921/22 by the Verlag Universitas Buch und Kunst GmbH, among which: Unser verewigter Kaiserin Auguste Viktoria -  Ein Gedenkblatt aus Tagen der Trauer (1921), written by Kritzinger's father.

    Flugschriften des Anker #1In the course of 1922, the Abteilung "Anker" of the Verlag Universitas Buch und Kunst GmbH published a series of eight brochures, its serie title Flugschriften des "Anker". This series was of an extreme nationalist nature, sometimes anti-Semitic. The series was part of the newspaper Der Anker - für deutsches Recht und deutsches Wesen, the successor of Ankers militärpolitische Wochenschau. Editor in chief was major Kurt Anker, who in World War I was press official of the Supreme German Command. The Abteilung "Anker" of the Verlag Universitas Buch und Kunst GmbH was seated in Berlin at the Nikolsburger Platz 4 Gth. From February to June 1922, the Psychische Studien Gesellschaft was also seated in this building.
    In the course of 1922, Kritzinger moved to Dresden. It is not clear when he resigned as director of the Verlag Universitas Buch und Kunst GmbH or if he was involved in the series Flugschriften des "Anker". In volume-1923 of the Adressbuch des deutschen Buchhandels, the name of Wilhelm Weicher, author and publisher in Leipzig of art books, is mentioned as the director of the Berlin settlement.

  6. Kritzinger-1922a, Vorwort and Kritzinger-1922b, Vorwort.
    Deutsche okkultistische Gesellschaft was founded in 1919, under the presidency of dr. Werner Haken, physician and freemason. In 1923, the name of this society was changed into Deutsche Gesellschaft für wissenschaftlichen Okkultismus. From 1923 to 1939, Schuppe was vice-president of this society; in April 1939, he became president. By the end of September 1939, the name of this society was changed into Deutsche metapsychische Gesellschaft, presided by Schuppe. This society continued to exist until spring 1941 (Schellinger et. al., 2010, p.304-305). [text]  

  7. Psychische Studien, volume 49 (1922), January, p.1-3. [text]   

  8. Psychische Studien, volume 50 (1923), March, p.120. [text  

  9. Psychische Studien, volume 50 (1923), February, p.72. [text]  

  10. Howe, p.220-221. [text]  

  11. Kritzinger-1922b, p.147; Kritzinger-1922a, p.120. [text 

  12. Kritzinger-1922a, p.128. [text]  

  13. Kritzinger-1929, p.273. [text]  

  14. Howe, p.168-169. [text]  

  15. Van Berkel: The 1939-fortune of Mysterien von Sonne und Seele. Bender's remark in Zukunftsvisionen Kriegsprophezeiungen Sterbeerlebnisse that Kritzinger advised Goebbels to order Krafft to produce some hundred copies of a 1568-edition of the Centuries and to write propagandistic comments upon quatrains, meant for the occupied French-speaking regions, is most likely the result of the situating in 1940 of Kritzinger's story about the events which occurred at the end of 1939, and of the fact that back in the eighties, the origin history of Krafft's Comment Nostradamus a-t-il entrevu l'avenir de l'Europe?, to which Bender most likely refers, was unknown (Bender, p.47-48; Van Berkel: Zukunftsvisionen Kriegsprophezeiungen Sterbeerlebnisse (Hans Bender, Munich, 1983). [text]

  16. Maichle: Die Nostradamus-Propaganda der Nazis 1939-1942. [text

  17. Van Berkel: Der Seher von Salon (Informations-Schriften #38, dr. H.H.- Kritzinger, DE, 1941). [text]  

  18. Maichle: Die Nostradamus-Propaganda der Nazis 1939-1942. [text]

  19. Howe, p.220-246; Van Berkel: The 1939-fortune of Mysterien von Sonne und Seele. [text]

  20. Kritzinger-1922b, p.151-152. Kritzinger owned a copy of the 1668-Amsterdam-edition; copies from pages of this edition are also included in Mysterien von Sonne und Seele and Todesstrahlen und Wünschelrute. [text]


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