The poetry of Wilhelm Muller, to whom Heine expressed indebtedness for his renewal of the forms of the German Volkslied, had
rarely been discussed in depth prior to this volume originally published in 1970. Cottrell's study is an interpretation of
Muller's three most successful song-cycles: Die schone Mullerin, Die Winterreise, and Fruhlingskranz. The first two, interpreted
in chapters one and two, are famed through Schubert's musical settings. Chapter three offers an interpretation of the Fruhlingskranz.
A last chapter considers Muller's poetic imagination. Full texts of the poems discussed are included in the Appendix and are
indexed by titles and first lines.