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Born in Moravia in 1882, Ernst Weiss grew up in Vienna where he trained as a doctor. Following the first World War, he settled in Berlin and devoted himself to writing. His work was admired by many leading figures of the period including Franz Kafka, Hermann Hesse and Joseph Roth. When Hitler came to power he went into exile in Paris. He committed suicide on May 15, 1940, on the day after German troops entered Paris.