This study reclaims the life and work of a key female figure among 18th-century German intellectual and literary circles, Elise Reimarus (1735-1805). To date typically acknowledged only in connection with famous men such as G. E. Lessing and M. Mendelssohn, Reimarus made significant contributions to the German Enlightenment in her own right, as a writer, educator, dramatist, and early leader of a literary salon. The reconstruction of Reimarus-biography, based on extensive archival research, provides new insights into the participation of women in an intellectual movement where women are sometimes seen as of little importance. The study also recovers Reimarus-writings, both manuscript works and once widely circulated publications, that have been unknown since her death. Surviving manuscript writings other than letters are published here for the first time. With illustrations, genealogical tables, maps, a bibliography, and an index. The Author Almut Spalding teaches at Illinois College in Jacksonville, Illinois. A native of Germany, she received her undergraduate degree in Psychology from the Ruprecht-Karls-Universität in Heidelberg, graduate degrees in Religion from the University of Iowa and McCormick Theological Seminary, spent some time in the pastorate, and earned her Ph.D. in Germanic Languages and Literatures from the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign. Her publications focus on Early Modern women writers.