Educated at Koningsberg University and the University of Berlin, Sudermann had to give up his studies because of financial difficulties. He worked for a time as a tutor before becoming a journalist in Bern, Switzerland. He returned to Germany in 1881 and became the editor of the Deutsches Reichsblatt. Thereafter, he devoted himself to writing. In 1886, he published Zweilicht, his first novel, and followed in 1887 with Frau Sorge, which was critically acclaimed. His first drama, Die Ehre, or The Honour appeared in 1889 and was enormously successful. Sudermann also produced a number of short stories. His other works include Geschwister (1888), Der Katzensteg (1890), Sodoms Ende (1891), Die Heimat (1893), Morituri (1896), Es Lebe das Leben! (1902), Es War (1904) and Stein unter Steinen (1905).