Julius Grosse (1828-1902), son of a military clergyman, dropped out of school, trained as a surveyor, later obtained his A-levels and, from 1849, studied law in Halle an der Saale. First literary works, among them the tragedy "Cola di Rienzi" (1851), oriented on William Shakespeare's (1564-1616) royal dramas, and financial independence led to his giving up his law studies after five semesters and moved to Munich in 1852 to study art at the academy in accordance with his original inclination. Finally, he switched completely over to literary work.
Close contacts with Paul Heyse (1830-1914) and Emanuel Geibel (1815-1884) not only promoted his epigonal poetry relationship, oriented towards Italy as a land of art, but also allowed him to join the "crocodiles" (association nickname: "Ichneumon"), the registrar and accountant of which he also became. From 1855, Grosse was also an editor and art critic for several newspapers (including the Neue Münchener Zeitung and the Bayerische Zeitung) and, from 1869, he was Secretary General of the German Schiller Foundation in Dresden and Weimar. In 1885, he moved his permanent residence back to Munich, was honoured as Grand Ducal Privy Councillor and died in 1902 at Lake Garda.
His literary works include poems, dramas, stories and novels; historical, psychological and criminalist subjects dominate. Grosse was most successful in his epic verses, novellas and novels concerned with the author’s critical analysis of his own age, e.g. "Der Wasunger Not. Ein tragikomisches Heldenlied" (1872), "Offene Wunden. Novellen" (1873), "Der getreue Eckart. Novel" (2 vols, 1885). His autobiography "Ursachen und Wirkungen" (1896) is particularly important for the history of the "crocodiles", since it provides information about important personalities then in the public sphere.