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00010434.GIF  

ADOLF AT SCHOOL, by Konrad Heiden
Translated from the Neues Tage-buch, Paris, 
German Emigre Weekly)
appeared in "The Living Age"  November 1936

from a new edition of Konrad Heiden's biography of Hitler


"The next official report on the career of this child appeared 
in the year 1895. 0n April 2 of that year he entered the Primary 
school at Fischlham near Enfeld. Two years later he transferred 
to the convent school of the Lambach Institution. A teacher 
there recalls having  expelled the student instantly for smoking 
in the convent garden. The boy attended his last public school 
year in Leonding.

     It is worthy of note that his report cards of this time show 
nothing but 'A's' with the occasional exception of singing, 
drawing and physical training. All the more remarkable was 
the setback attending his entry into the State secondary 
school of Linz. His performance during the first year there 
was so poor that he failed to be promoted and had to remain 
in the same class for another year. After that there were 
temporary improvements in his work; several times he did 
excellently in history; but mathematics remained only 
"adequate" or "failing," as did French. His marks in German 
were "adequate"  or at best "fair", while they were "excellent" 
in free-hand drawing and physical training. His  attention 
was characterizes as "uneven", "passing" at best. One year 
after the death of his father he left Linz, for reasons that 
are not clear. He went to Styria in upper Austria, where he 
lived with a court clerk by the name of von Cichini and 
attended the local State secondary school. His last report 
card in the fourth grade there, dated September 16, 1905, 
presents a fair picture of Adolf Hitler the student.

                 I. Semester                  II. Semester

Conduct...          fair                          fair
Attention..         uneven                        passing
Bible.....          adequate                      fair
German....          failing                       adequate
Geography and History
..........          adequate                      fair
Mathematics..       failing                       adequate
Chemistry..         adequate                      adequate
Physics...          fair                          adequate
-------------------------------------------------------------
Geometry, Mechanical Drawing
                    adequate***
Solid Geometry.     adequate                      failing*
Free Hand Drawing   good                          excellent
Physical training.  excellent                     excellent
Stenography...      failing                       -------
Singing.....        ------                        fair
Appearance of Written Work
.......             unsatisfactory                unsatisfactory
--------------------------------------------------------------
*Make-up examination permitted
***As result of the make-up examination.

Beginning with October, 1907, he lived in Vienna, supported by 
his mother or other relatives and preparing himself for the 
Academy of Art, incidentally savoring, boy-like, the big city; 
theaters, museums, parliament. Now he called himself a student, 
not a painter, for he was convinced he was about to become a 
student in the Academy of Fine Art's School of Painting.

It was not to be. In October, 1907, he applied for the Academy's 
drawing test, success in which is a condition of admission. The 
result of this test was the following entry in the Academy's 
'classification list' for the school year 1907-1908:-

00010435.GIF  page 2

ADOLF AT SCHOOL
Konrad Heiden

'Projects in composition for test takers. First day: Expulsion 
from Paradise, etc. Second day: Episode from the Deluge, etc.'

'Those who failed to pass, or who were not admitted were: 
Messers... Adolf Hitler. Braunau-on-the-Inn, April 20, 1889. 
German, Catholic, father Civil Service official; four years 
secondary school. Few heads. Test drawing insufficient.'

He had been rejected. He seems not to have mentioned his 
failure at home, and in his autobiography he ignores it completely. 
He remained in Vienna, in his lodging in the Stumpergasse 31, 
later in the [unreadable]  in the 15th district. He determined to 
try again the following fall. The result was even more crushing. 
This time the classification list simply states:-

'Those who failed to pass or who were not admitted to the 
test were Messers...  Adolf Hitler. Braunau-on-the-Inn, April 20, 
1889. German, Catholic, father Civil Service official; four years 
secondary school. Not admitted to the test.'
 
This meant that the drawings he had brought along were of 
such a nature that the examiners did not consider it necessary 
to conduct any further test.

It was the second and final rejection. It hit him so hard that, in 
his autobiography, he could not pass it over ... The director is 
supposed to have told him that he was much better fitted to 
become an architect and that he should apply to a school of 
architecture. But this course was barred to him, Hitler asserts, 
because attendance at this division required graduation from 
the higher branch of the secondary school.

Hitler was in error here. The regulations expressly contain a 
'safety valve', in certain cases the graduation requirement 
could be dispensed with- namely in cases of 'great talent.' 
Moreover, the directors of the School of Architecture, prof. 
Wagner and Ohmann, were men of the type who would not 
have barred the way to someone with real architectural 
talent solely because he lacked a diploma....
 
Crushed and despondent, he journeyed home to his mother's 
sickbed....

Living Age p.227-229 ADOLF AT SCHOOL, Heiden

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