Urs Widmer was born in Basel in 1938. He studied German, Romance languages and History in Basel, Montpellier and Paris. In 1966 he completed his doctoral thesis on German postwar prose, and then worked as an editor for Walter Publishing House in Olten, Switzerland, and for Suhrkamp Publishing House in Frankfurt. In Frankfurt he stayed for 17 years, though with Suhrkamp only until 1968. Together with other editors he founded the ›Verlag der Autoren‹. Until his death Urs Widmer lived and worked as a writer in Zurich.