Bolanden, CONRAD VON (JOSEPH BISCHOFF), a German novelist, son of a rich merchant, b. August 9, 1828, at Niedergeilbach, a village of the Palatinate. He attended the Latin school at Blieskastel, the seminary at Speyer, and in 1849 entered the University of Munich to study theology. Ordained priest in 1852 he was appointed assistant pastor at the cathedral. Two years later he became pastor at Kirchheim Bolanden whence his pen name “Conrad von Bolanden”. The following year he was transferred to Borrstadt and three years later to Berghausen. During this time he wrote his first four works: “A Wedding Trip”, “Queen Bertha”, “Historical Tales of Frederick II”, and “Gustav Adolf”. In 1870 he resigned his parish to devote himself exclusively to literary work, and lived in strict retirement at Speyer. He published numerous novels of which the most noteworthy are: “Canossa”, “Trowel or Cross”, “Night of St. Bartholomew”, “Savonarola”, Crusades”, “Wambold”, “Charlemagne”, “Otto the Great”, “Pillar of Truth”.
His novels and romances, though not all of equal worth, are written for the people, brilliant in conception, simple in style. He fearlessly defends the Catholic standpoint and supports his position by frequent quotations from original sources. But in discussing questions of the day his criticisms are often severe and unjust. His works are widely read and have been translated into English and other European languages.