Jens Baggesen and H.C. Andersen are both aspiring young authors when they set out on their respective journeys to Germany. The literary accounts of their travels-Labyrinten and Skyggebilleder-show how the authors perceive a foreign country, which, despite having a culture closely linked to their own, still contains elements that strike them as being unfamiliar and even bizarre. Their curiosity ... [Show full abstract] towards the strange features they encounter is accompanied by a strong desire to reaffirm their own national and cultural identity, forever relying on the comfort of the familiar. When confronted with experiences of strangeness and unfamiliarity that threaten to alienate them, both authors develop similar literary strategies. The poetical programmes that both writers implicitly subscribe to are illustrated in the way they perceive strange and alien elements and are therefore fundamentally and intrinsically interlinked with their aesthetic convictions as writers.