Keller, Gottfried (gôtˈfrēt) [key], 1819–90, Swiss novelist, poet, and short-story writer. His vital, realistic, and purposeful fiction gives him a high place among 19th-century authors. Chief among his works is the "educational" novel, Der grüne Heinrich (1854–55; tr. Green Henry, 1960), which he later revised. It is considered one of the outstanding works of the 19th cent. A number of short stories are included in People of Seldwyla (1856–74; tr. 1929); among them is the highly regarded tale which was the basis of Delius's opera A Village Romeo and Juliet.
See J. M. Lindsay, Gottfried Keller: Life and Works (Am. ed. 1969).