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Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
(/ˈɡɜːrtə/;[1][2][3] German: [ˈjoːhan ˈvɔlfɡaŋ fɔn ˈɡøːtə] ( listen); 28 August 1749 – 22 March 1832) was a German writer and statesman. His works include four novels; epic and lyric poetry; prose and verse dramas; memoirs; an autobiography; literary and aesthetic criticism; and treatises on botany, anatomy, and colour. In addition, there are numerous literary and scientific fragments, more than 10,000 letters, and nearly 3,000 drawings by him extant. A literary celebrity by the age of 25, Goethe was ennobled by the Duke of Saxe-Weimar, Carl August in 1782 after taking up residence there in November 1775 following the success of his first novel, The Sorrows of Young Werther
Werther
(1774). He was an early participant in the Sturm und Drang literary movement. During his first ten years in Weimar, Goethe was a member of the Duke's privy council, sat on the war and highway commissions, oversaw the reopening of silver mines in nearby Ilmenau, and implemented a series of administrative reforms at the University of Jena. He also contributed to the planning of Weimar's botanical park and the rebuilding of its Ducal Palace, which in 1998 were together designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site
UNESCO World Heritage Site
under the name Classical Weimar.[4] Goethe's first major scientific work, the Metamorphosis of Plants, was published after he returned from a 1788 tour of Italy. In 1791, he was made managing director of the theatre at Weimar, and in 1794 he began a friendship with the dramatist, historian, and philosopher Friedrich Schiller, whose plays he premiered until Schiller's death in 1805. During this period, Goethe published his second novel, Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship; the verse epic Hermann and Dorothea, and, in 1808, the first part of his most celebrated drama, Faust. His conversations and various common undertakings throughout the 1790s with Schiller, Johann Gottlieb Fichte, Johann Gottfried Herder, Alexander von Humboldt, Wilhelm von Humboldt, and August and Friedrich Schlegel have come to be collectively termed Weimar
Weimar
Classicism. The German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer
Arthur Schopenhauer
named Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship one of the four greatest novels ever written (along with Tristram Shandy, La Nouvelle Héloïse, and Don Quixote[5]), while the American philosopher and essayist Ralph Waldo Emerson selected Goethe as one of six "representative men" in his work of the same name (along with Plato, Emanuel Swedenborg, Montaigne, Napoleon, and Shakespeare). Goethe's comments and observations form the basis of several biographical works, most notably Johann Peter Eckermann's Conversations with Goethe.[citation needed]

Contents

1 Life

1.1 Early life 1.2 Legal career 1.3 Early years in Weimar 1.4 Italy 1.5 Weimar 1.6 Later life 1.7 Death

2 Literary work

2.1 Overview 2.2 Details of selected works

3 Scientific work 4 Eroticism 5 Religion and politics 6 Influence 7 Bibliography 8 See also 9 References

9.1 Notes 9.2 Sources

10 Further reading 11 External links

Life[edit] Early life[edit] Goethe's father, Johann Caspar Goethe, lived with his family in a large house in Frankfurt, then an Imperial Free City
Imperial Free City
of the Holy Roman Empire. Though he had studied law in Leipzig and had been appointed Imperial Councillor, he was not involved in the city's official affairs.[6] Johann Caspar married Goethe's mother, Catharina Elizabeth Textor at Frankfurt
Frankfurt
on 20 August 1748, when he was 38 and she was 17.[7] All their children, with the exception of Johann Wolfgang and his sister, Cornelia Friederica Christiana, who was born in 1750, died at early ages.

Goethe's birthplace in Frankfurt
Frankfurt
(Großer Hirschgraben)

His father and private tutors gave Goethe lessons in all the common subjects of their time, especially languages (Latin, Greek, French, Italian, English and Hebrew). Goethe also received lessons in dancing, riding and fencing. Johann Caspar, feeling frustrated in his own ambitions, was determined that his children should have all those advantages that he had not.[6] Although Goethe's great passion was drawing, he quickly became interested in literature; Friedrich Gottlieb Klopstock
Friedrich Gottlieb Klopstock
and Homer
Homer
were among his early favorites. He had a lively devotion to theater as well and was greatly fascinated by puppet shows that were annually arranged in his home; this is a recurrent theme in his literary work Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship. He also took great pleasure in reading works on history and religion. He writes about this period:

I had from childhood the singular habit of always learning by heart the beginnings of books, and the divisions of a work, first of the five books of Moses, and then of the 'Aeneid' and Ovid's 'Metamorphoses'. ... If an ever busy imagination, of which that tale may bear witness, led me hither and thither, if the medley of fable and history, mythology and religion, threatened to bewilder me, I readily fled to those oriental regions, plunged into the first books of Moses, and there, amid the scattered shepherd tribes, found myself at once in the greatest solitude and the greatest society.[8]

Goethe became also acquainted with Frankfurt
Frankfurt
actors.[9] Among early literary attempts, he was infatuated with Gretchen, who would later reappear in his Faust
Faust
and the adventures with whom he would concisely describe in Dichtung und Wahrheit.[10] He adored Caritas Meixner (27 July 1750 – 31 December 1773), a wealthy Worms trader's daughter and friend of his sister, who would later marry the merchant G. F. Schuler.[11] Legal career[edit]

Anna Katharina (Käthchen) Schönkopf

Goethe studied law at Leipzig University
Leipzig University
from 1765 to 1768. He detested learning age-old judicial rules by heart, preferring instead to attend the poetry lessons of Christian Fürchtegott Gellert. In Leipzig, Goethe fell in love with Anna Katharina Schönkopf
Anna Katharina Schönkopf
and wrote cheerful verses about her in the Rococo
Rococo
genre. In 1770, he anonymously released Annette, his first collection of poems. His uncritical admiration for many contemporary poets vanished as he became interested in Gotthold Ephraim Lessing
Gotthold Ephraim Lessing
and Christoph Martin Wieland. Already at this time, Goethe wrote a good deal, but he threw away nearly all of these works, except for the comedy Die Mitschuldigen. The restaurant Auerbachs Keller
Auerbachs Keller
and its legend of Faust's 1525 barrel ride impressed him so much that Auerbachs Keller
Auerbachs Keller
became the only real place in his closet drama Faust
Faust
Part One. As his studies did not progress, Goethe was forced to return to Frankfurt
Frankfurt
at the close of August 1768. Goethe became severely ill in Frankfurt. During the year and a half that followed, because of several relapses, the relationship with his father worsened. During convalescence, Goethe was nursed by his mother and sister. In April 1770, Goethe left Frankfurt
Frankfurt
in order to finish his studies at the University of Strasbourg. In Alsace, Goethe blossomed. No other landscape has he described as affectionately as the warm, wide Rhine area. In Strasbourg, Goethe met Johann Gottfried Herder. The two became close friends, and crucially to Goethe's intellectual development, Herder kindled his interest in Shakespeare, Ossian
Ossian
and in the notion of Volkspoesie (folk poetry). On 14 October 1772 Goethe held a gathering in his parental home in honour of the first German "Shakespeare Day". His first acquaintance with Shakespeare's works is described as his personal awakening in literature.[12] On a trip to the village Sessenheim, Goethe fell in love with Friederike Brion, in October 1770,[13][14] but, after ten months, terminated the relationship in August 1771.[15] Several of his poems, like "Willkommen und Abschied", "Sesenheimer Lieder" and "Heidenröslein", originate from this time. At the end of August 1771, Goethe acquired the academic degree of the Lizenziat (Licentia docendi) in Frankfurt
Frankfurt
and established a small legal practice. Although in his academic work he had expressed the ambition to make jurisprudence progressively more humane, his inexperience led him to proceed too vigorously in his first cases, and he was reprimanded and lost further ones. This prematurely terminated his career as a lawyer after only a few months. At this time, Goethe was acquainted with the court of Darmstadt, where his inventiveness was praised. From this milieu came Johann Georg Schlosser (who was later to become his brother-in-law) and Johann Heinrich Merck. Goethe also pursued literary plans again; this time, his father did not have anything against it, and even helped. Goethe obtained a copy of the biography of a noble highwayman from the German Peasants' War. In a couple of weeks the biography was reworked into a colourful drama. Entitled Götz von Berlichingen, the work went directly to the heart of Goethe's contemporaries. Goethe could not subsist on being one of the editors of a literary periodical (published by Schlosser and Merck). In May 1772 he once more began the practice of law at Wetzlar. In 1774 he wrote the book which would bring him worldwide fame, The Sorrows of Young Werther. The outer shape of the work's plot is widely taken over from what Goethe experienced during his Wetzlar
Wetzlar
time with Charlotte Buff (1753–1828)[16] and her fiancé, Johann Christian Kestner (de) (1741–1800),[16] as well as from the suicide of the author's friend Karl Wilhelm Jerusalem (de) (1747–1772); in it, Goethe made a desperate passion of what was in reality a hearty and relaxed friendship.[17] Despite the immense success of Werther, it did not bring Goethe much financial gain because copyright laws at the time were essentially nonexistent. (In later years Goethe would bypass this problem by periodically authorizing "new, revised" editions of his Complete Works.)[18]

Early years in Weimar[edit]

Goethe in c. 1775

In 1775, Goethe was invited, on the strength of his fame as the author of The Sorrows of Young Werther, to the court of Karl August, Duke of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach, who would become Grand Duke
Grand Duke
in 1815. (The Duke at the time was 18 years of age, to Goethe's 26.) Goethe thus went to live in Weimar, where he remained for the rest of his life and where, over the course of many years, he held a succession of offices, becoming the Duke's friend and chief adviser.[19][20] In 1776, Goethe formed a close relationship to Charlotte von Stein, an older, married woman. The intimate bond with Frau von Stein lasted for ten years, after which Goethe abruptly left for Italy without giving his companion any notice. She was emotionally distraught at the time, but they were eventually reconciled.[21] Goethe, aside from official duties, was also a friend and confidant to the Duke, and participated fully in the activities of the court. For Goethe, his first ten years at Weimar
Weimar
could well be described as a garnering of a degree and range of experience which perhaps could be achieved in no other way. In 1779, Goethe took on the War Commission of the Grand Duchy of Saxe-Weimar, in addition to the Mines and Highways commissions. In 1782, when the chancellor of the Duchy's Exchequer left his office, Goethe agreed to act in his place for two and a half years; this post virtually made him prime minister and the principal representative of the Duchy.[22] Goethe was ennobled in 1782 (this being indicated by the "von" in his name). As head of the Saxe- Weimar
Weimar
War Commission, Goethe participated in the recruitment of mercenaries into the Prussian and British military during the American Revolution. The author W. Daniel Wilson claims that Goethe engaged in negotiating the forced sale of vagabonds, criminals, and political dissidents as part of these activities.[23] Italy[edit]

Goethe, age 38, painted by Angelica Kauffman
Angelica Kauffman
1787

Goethe's journey to the Italian peninsula
Italian peninsula
and Sicily from 1786 to 1788 was of great significance in his aesthetic and philosophical development. His father had made a similar journey during his own youth, and his example was a major motivating factor for Goethe to make the trip. More importantly, however, the work of Johann Joachim Winckelmann had provoked a general renewed interest in the classical art of ancient Greece and Rome. Thus Goethe's journey had something of the nature of a pilgrimage to it. During the course of his trip Goethe met and befriended the artists Angelica Kauffman
Angelica Kauffman
and Johann Heinrich Wilhelm Tischbein, as well as encountering such notable characters as Lady Hamilton and Alessandro Cagliostro
Alessandro Cagliostro
(see Affair of the Diamond Necklace). He also journeyed to Sicily during this time, and wrote intriguingly that "To have seen Italy without having seen Sicily is to not have seen Italy at all, for Sicily is the clue to everything." While in Southern Italy and Sicily, Goethe encountered, for the first time genuine Greek (as opposed to Roman) architecture, and was quite startled by its relative simplicity. Winckelmann had not recognized the distinctness of the two styles. Goethe's diaries of this period form the basis of the non-fiction Italian Journey. Italian Journey
Italian Journey
only covers the first year of Goethe's visit. The remaining year is largely undocumented, aside from the fact that he spent much of it in Venice. This "gap in the record" has been the source of much speculation over the years. In the decades which immediately followed its publication in 1816, Italian Journey
Italian Journey
inspired countless German youths to follow Goethe's example. This is pictured, somewhat satirically, in George Eliot's Middlemarch. Weimar[edit]

A Goethe watercolour depicting a liberty pole at the border to the short-lived Republic of Mainz, created under influence of the French Revolution and destroyed in the Siege of Mainz in which Goethe participated

In late 1792, Goethe took part in the battle of Valmy against revolutionary France, assisting Duke Carl August of Saxe- Weimar
Weimar
during the failed invasion of France. Again during the Siege of Mainz he assisted Carl August as a military observer. His written account of these events can be found within his Complete Works. In 1794, Friedrich Schiller
Friedrich Schiller
wrote to Goethe offering friendship; they had previously had only a mutually wary relationship ever since first becoming acquainted in 1788. This collaborative friendship lasted until Schiller's death in 1805.

Goethe, by Luise Seidler ( Weimar
Weimar
1811)

In 1806, Goethe was living in Weimar
Weimar
with his mistress Christiane Vulpius, the sister of Christian A Vulpius, and their son Julius August Walter von Goethe. On 13 October, Napoleon's army invaded the town. The French "spoon guards," the least disciplined soldiers, occupied Goethe's house:

The 'spoon guards' had broken in, they had drunk wine, made a great uproar and called for the master of the house. Goethe's secretary Riemer reports: 'Although already undressed and wearing only his wide nightgown... he descended the stairs towards them and inquired what they wanted from him.... His dignified figure, commanding respect, and his spiritual mien seemed to impress even them.' But it was not to last long. Late at night they burst into his bedroom with drawn bayonets. Goethe was petrified, Christiane raised a lot of noise and even tangled with them, other people who had taken refuge in Goethe's house rushed in, and so the marauders eventually withdrew again. It was Christiane who commanded and organized the defense of the house on the Frauenplan. The barricading of the kitchen and the cellar against the wild pillaging soldiery was her work. Goethe noted in his diary: "Fires, rapine, a frightful night... Preservation of the house through steadfastness and luck." The luck was Goethe's, the steadfastness was displayed by Christiane.[24]

Days afterward, on 19 October 1806, Goethe legitimized their 18-year relationship by marrying Christiane in a quiet marriage service at the Jakobskirche in Weimar (de). They had already had several children together by this time, including their son, Julius August Walter von Goethe (25 December 1789 – 28 October 1830), whose wife, Ottilie von Pogwisch (de) (31 October 1796 – 26 October 1872), cared for the elder Goethe until his death in 1832. August and Ottilie had three children: Walther, Freiherr von Goethe (9 April 1818 – 15 April 1885), Wolfgang, Freiherr von Goethe (de) (18 September 1820 – 20 January 1883) and Alma von Goethe (de) (29 October 1827 – 29 September 1844). Christiane von Goethe died in 1816.

Ulrike von Levetzow

Later life[edit] After 1793, Goethe devoted his endeavours primarily to literature. By 1820, Goethe was on amiable terms with Kaspar Maria von Sternberg. In 1823, having recovered from a near fatal heart illness, Goethe fell in love with Ulrike von Levetzow
Ulrike von Levetzow
whom he wanted to marry, but because of the opposition of her mother he never proposed. Their last meeting in Carlsbad on 5 September 1823 inspired him to the famous Marienbad Elegy which he considered one of his finest works.[25] During that time he also developed a deep emotional bond with the Polish pianist Maria Agata Szymanowska.[citation needed] In 1821 Goethe's friend Carl Friedrich Zelter
Carl Friedrich Zelter
introduced him to the 12 year old Felix Mendelssohn. Goethe, now in his seventies, was greatly impressed by the child, leading to perhaps the earliest confirmed comparison with Mozart in the following conversation between Goethe and Zelter:

"Musical prodigies ... are probably no longer so rare; but what this little man can do in extemporizing and playing at sight borders the miraculous, and I could not have believed it possible at so early an age." "And yet you heard Mozart in his seventh year at Frankfurt?" said Zelter. "Yes", answered Goethe, "... but what your pupil already accomplishes, bears the same relation to the Mozart of that time that the cultivated talk of a grown-up person bears to the prattle of a child."[26]

Mendelssohn was invited to meet Goethe on several later occasions,[27] and set a number of Goethe's poems to music. His other compositions inspired by Goethe include the overture Calm Sea and Prosperous Voyage (Op. 27, 1828), and the cantata Die erste Walpurgisnacht
Die erste Walpurgisnacht
(The First Walpurgis Night, Op. 60, 1832).[28] Death[edit]

Coffins of Goethe and Schiller, Weimar
Weimar
vault

In 1832, Goethe died in Weimar
Weimar
of apparent heart failure. His last words, according to his doctor Carl Vogel, were, Mehr Licht! (More light!), but this is disputed as Vogel was not in the room at the moment Goethe died.[29] He is buried in the Ducal Vault at Weimar's Historical Cemetery. Eckermann closes his famous work, Conversations with Goethe, with this passage:

The morning after Goethe's death, a deep desire seized me to look once again upon his earthly garment. His faithful servant, Frederick, opened for me the chamber in which he was laid out. Stretched upon his back, he reposed as if asleep; profound peace and security reigned in the features of his sublimely noble countenance. The mighty brow seemed yet to harbour thoughts. I wished for a lock of his hair; but reverence prevented me from cutting it off. The body lay naked, only wrapped in a white sheet; large pieces of ice had been placed near it, to keep it fresh as long as possible. Frederick drew aside the sheet, and I was astonished at the divine magnificence of the limbs. The breast was powerful, broad, and arched; the arms and thighs were elegant, and of the most perfect shape; nowhere, on the whole body, was there a trace of either fat or of leanness and decay. A perfect man lay in great beauty before me; and the rapture the sight caused me made me forget for a moment that the immortal spirit had left such an abode. I laid my hand on his heart – there was a deep silence – and I turned away to give free vent to my suppressed tears.

The first production of Richard Wagner's opera Lohengrin took place in Weimar
Weimar
in 1850. The conductor was Franz Liszt, who chose the date 28 August in honour of Goethe, who was born on 28 August 1749.[30] Literary work[edit]

First edition of The Sorrows of Young Werther

Overview[edit] The most important of Goethe's works produced before he went to Weimar were Götz von Berlichingen (1773), a tragedy that was the first work to bring him recognition, and the novel The Sorrows of Young Werther (German: Die Leiden des jungen Werthers) (1774), which gained him enormous fame as a writer in the Sturm und Drang
Sturm und Drang
period which marked the early phase of Romanticism. Indeed, Werther
Werther
is often considered to be the "spark" which ignited the movement, and can arguably be called the world's first "best-seller." During the years at Weimar
Weimar
before he met Schiller
Schiller
he began Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship, wrote the dramas Iphigenie auf Tauris (Iphigenia in Tauris), Egmont, Torquato Tasso, and the fable Reineke Fuchs.[citation needed] To the period of his friendship with Schiller
Schiller
belong the conception of Wilhelm Meister's Journeyman Years (the continuation of Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship), the idyll of Hermann and Dorothea, the Roman Elegies
Roman Elegies
and the verse drama The Natural Daughter. In the last period, between Schiller's death, in 1805, and his own, appeared Faust Part One, Elective Affinities, the West-Eastern Diwan (a collection of poems in the Persian style, influenced by the work of Hafez), his autobiographical Aus meinem Leben: Dichtung und Wahrheit
Dichtung und Wahrheit
(From My Life: Poetry and Truth) which covers his early life and ends with his departure for Weimar, his Italian Journey, and a series of treatises on art. His writings were immediately influential in literary and artistic circles.[citation needed] Goethe was fascinated by Kalidasa's Abhijñānaśākuntalam, which was one of the first works of Sanskrit literature
Sanskrit literature
that became known in Europe, after being translated from English to German.[31]

Goethe– Schiller
Schiller
Monument, Weimar
Weimar
(1857)

Details of selected works[edit] The short epistolary novel, Die Leiden des jungen Werthers, or The Sorrows of Young Werther, published in 1774, recounts an unhappy romantic infatuation that ends in suicide. Goethe admitted that he "shot his hero to save himself": a reference to Goethe's own near-suicidal obsession with a young woman during this period, an obsession he quelled through the writing process. The novel remains in print in dozens of languages and its influence is undeniable; its central hero, an obsessive figure driven to despair and destruction by his unrequited love for the young Lotte, has become a pervasive literary archetype. The fact that Werther
Werther
ends with the protagonist's suicide and funeral—a funeral which "no clergyman attended"—made the book deeply controversial upon its (anonymous) publication, for on the face of it, it appeared to condone and glorify suicide. Suicide is considered sinful by Christian doctrine: suicides were denied Christian burial
Christian burial
with the bodies often mistreated and dishonoured in various ways; in corollary, the deceased's property and possessions were often confiscated by the Church.[32] However, Goethe explained his use of Werther
Werther
in his autobiography. He said he "turned reality into poetry but his friends thought poetry should be turned into reality and the poem imitated." He was against this reading of poetry.[33] Epistolary novels were common during this time, letter-writing being a primary mode of communication. What set Goethe's book apart from other such novels was its expression of unbridled longing for a joy beyond possibility, its sense of defiant rebellion against authority, and of principal importance, its total subjectivity: qualities that trailblazed the Romantic movement. The next work, his epic closet drama Faust, was completed in stages. The first part was published in 1808 and created a sensation. Goethe finished Faust Part Two
Faust Part Two
in the year of his death, and the work was published posthumously. Goethe's original draft of a Faust
Faust
play, which probably dates from 1773–74, and is now known as the Urfaust, was also published after his death. [34] The first operatic version of Goethe's Faust, by Louis Spohr, appeared in 1814. The work subsequently inspired operas and oratorios by Schumann, Berlioz, Gounod, Boito, Busoni, and Schnittke
Schnittke
as well as symphonic works by Liszt, Wagner, and Mahler. Faust
Faust
became the ur-myth of many figures in the 19th century. Later, a facet of its plot, i.e., of selling one's soul to the devil for power over the physical world, took on increasing literary importance and became a view of the victory of technology and of industrialism, along with its dubious human expenses. In 1919, the world premiere complete production of Faust
Faust
was staged at the Goetheanum.

Goethe in the Roman Campagna (1786) by Tischbein

Goethe's poetic work served as a model for an entire movement in German poetry termed Innerlichkeit ("introversion") and represented by, for example, Heine. Goethe's words inspired a number of compositions by, among others, Mozart, Beethoven
Beethoven
(who idolised Goethe),[35] Schubert, Berlioz
Berlioz
and Wolf. Perhaps the single most influential piece is "Mignon's Song" which opens with one of the most famous lines in German poetry, an allusion to Italy: "Kennst du das Land, wo die Zitronen blühn?" ("Do you know the land where the lemon trees bloom?"). He is also widely quoted. Epigrams such as "Against criticism a man can neither protest nor defend himself; he must act in spite of it, and then it will gradually yield to him", "Divide and rule, a sound motto; unite and lead, a better one", and "Enjoy when you can, and endure when you must", are still in usage or are often paraphrased. Lines from Faust, such as "Das also war des Pudels Kern", "Das ist der Weisheit letzter Schluss", or "Grau ist alle Theorie" have entered everyday German usage. Some well-known quotations are often incorrectly attributed to Goethe. These include Hippocrates' "Art is long, life is short", which is echoed in Goethe's Faust
Goethe's Faust
and Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship. Scientific work[edit] See also: Goethean science

As to what I have done as a poet,... I take no pride in it... But that in my century I am the only person who knows the truth in the difficult science of colours—of that, I say, I am not a little proud, and here I have a consciousness of a superiority to many. — Johann Eckermann, Conversations with Goethe

Although his literary work has attracted the greatest amount of interest, Goethe was also keenly involved in studies of natural science.[36] He wrote several works on morphology, and colour theory. Goethe also had the largest private collection of minerals in all of Europe. By the time of his death, in order to gain a comprehensive view in geology, he had collected 17,800 rock samples. His focus on morphology and what was later called homology influenced 19th century naturalists, although his ideas of transformation were about the continuous metamorphosis of living things and did not relate to contemporary ideas of "transformisme" or transmutation of species. Homology, or as Étienne Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire
Étienne Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire
called it "analogie", was used by Charles Darwin
Charles Darwin
as strong evidence of common descent and of laws of variation.[37] Goethe's studies (notably with an elephant's skull lent to him by Samuel Thomas von Soemmerring) led him to independently discover the human intermaxillary bone, also known as "Goethe's bone", in 1784, which Broussonet (1779) and Vicq d'Azyr (1780) had (using different methods) identified several years earlier.[38] While not the only one in his time to question the prevailing view that this bone did not exist in humans, Goethe, who believed ancient anatomists had known about this bone, was the first to prove its existence in all mammals. The elephant's skull that led Goethe to this discovery, and was subsequently named the Goethe Elephant, still exists and is displayed in the Ottoneum
Ottoneum
in Kassel, Germany.

Light spectrum, from Theory of Colours. Goethe observed that with a prism, colour arises at light-dark edges, and the spectrum occurs where these coloured edges overlap.

During his Italian journey, Goethe formulated a theory of plant metamorphosis in which the archetypal form of the plant is to be found in the leaf – he writes, "from top to bottom a plant is all leaf, united so inseparably with the future bud that one cannot be imagined without the other".[39] In 1790, he published his Metamorphosis of Plants.[40] [41] As one of the many precursors in the history of evolutionary thought, Goethe wrote in Story of My Botanical Studies (1831):

The ever-changing display of plant forms, which I have followed for so many years, awakens increasingly within me the notion: The plant forms which surround us were not all created at some given point in time and then locked into the given form, they have been given... a felicitous mobility and plasticity that allows them to grow and adapt themselves to many different conditions in many different places.[42]

Goethe's botanical theories were partly based on his gardening in Weimar.[43] Goethe also popularized the Goethe barometer
Goethe barometer
using a principle established by Torricelli. According to Hegel, "Goethe has occupied himself a good deal with meteorology; barometer readings interested him particularly... What he says is important: the main thing is that he gives a comparative table of barometric readings during the whole month of December 1822, at Weimar, Jena, London, Boston, Vienna, Töpel... He claims to deduce from it that the barometric level varies in the same proportion not only in each zone but that it has the same variation, too, at different altitudes above sea-level".[44] In 1810, Goethe published his Theory of Colours, which he considered his most important work. In it, he contentiously characterized colour as arising from the dynamic interplay of light and darkness through the mediation of a turbid medium.[45] In 1816, Schopenhauer went on to develop his own theory in On Vision and Colours based on the observations supplied in Goethe's book. After being translated into English by Charles Eastlake in 1840, his theory became widely adopted by the art world, most notably J. M. W. Turner.[46] Goethe's work also inspired the philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein, to write his Remarks on Colour. Goethe was vehemently opposed to Newton's analytic treatment of colour, engaging instead in compiling a comprehensive rational description of a wide variety of colour phenomena. Although the accuracy of Goethe's observations does not admit a great deal of criticism, his aesthetic approach did not lend itself to the demands of analytic and mathematical analysis used ubiquitously in modern Science. Goethe was, however, the first to systematically study the physiological effects of colour, and his observations on the effect of opposed colours led him to a symmetric arrangement of his colour wheel, 'for the colours diametrically opposed to each other... are those which reciprocally evoke each other in the eye. (Goethe, Theory of Colours, 1810).[47] In this, he anticipated Ewald Hering's opponent colour theory (1872).[48] Goethe outlines his method in the essay The experiment as mediator between subject and object (1772).[49] In the Kurschner edition of Goethe's works, the science editor, Rudolf Steiner, presents Goethe's approach to science as phenomenological. Steiner elaborated on that in the books The Theory of Knowledge Implicit in Goethe's World-Conception[50] and Goethe's World View,[51] in which he characterizes intuition as the instrument by which one grasps Goethe's biological archetype—The Typus. Novalis, himself a geologist and mining engineer, expressed the opinion that Goethe was the first physicist of his time and 'epoch-making in the history of physics', writing that Goethe's studies of light, of the metamorphosis of plants and of insects were indications and proofs 'that the perfect educational lecture belongs in the artist's sphere of work'; and that Goethe would be surpassed 'but only in the way in which the ancients can be surpassed, in inner content and force, in variety and depth—as an artist actually not, or only very little, for his rightness and intensity are perhaps already more exemplary than it would seem'. [52] Eroticism[edit] Many of Goethe's works, especially Faust, the Roman Elegies, and the Venetian Epigrams, depict erotic passions and acts. For instance, in Faust, the first use of Faust's power after signing a contract with the devil is to seduce a teenage girl. Some of the Venetian Epigrams were held back from publication due to their sexual content. Goethe clearly saw human sexuality as a topic worthy of poetic and artistic depiction, an idea that was uncommon in a time when the private nature of sexuality was rigorously normative.[53] Goethe wrote of both boys and girls: "I like boys a lot, but the girls are even nicer. If I tire of her as a girl, she'll play the boy for me as well" (Goethe, 1884).[54] Goethe also defended pederasty: " Pederasty
Pederasty
is as old as humanity itself, and one can therefore say that it is natural, that it resides in nature, even if it proceeds against nature. What culture has won from nature will not be surrendered or given up at any price."[55]

Goethe on a 1999 German stamp

Religion and politics[edit] Goethe was a freethinker who believed that one could be inwardly Christian without following any of the Christian churches, many of whose central teachings he firmly opposed, sharply distinguishing between Christ and the tenets of Christian theology, and criticizing its history as a "hodgepodge of fallacy and violence".[56][57][58] His own descriptions of his relationship to the Christian faith and even to the Church varied widely and have been interpreted even more widely, so that while Goethe's secretary Eckermann portrayed him as enthusiastic about Christianity, Jesus, Martin Luther, and the Protestant Reformation, even calling Christianity the "ultimate religion,"[59][60][61] on one occasion Goethe described himself as "not anti-Christian, nor un-Christian, but most decidedly non-Christian,"[62] and in his Venetian Epigram 66, Goethe listed the symbol of the cross among the four things that he most disliked.[63][64] According to Nietzsche, Goethe had "a kind of almost joyous and trusting fatalism" that has "faith that only in the totality everything redeems itself and appears good and justified."[65] Born into a Lutheran family, Goethe's early faith was shaken by news of such events as the 1755 Lisbon earthquake
1755 Lisbon earthquake
and the Seven Years' War. His later spiritual perspective incorporated elements of pantheism (heavily influenced by Spinoza), humanism, and various elements of Western esotericism, as seen most vividly in Part II of Faust. A year before his death, in a letter to Sulpiz Boisserée, Goethe wrote that he had the feeling that all his life he had been aspiring to qualify as one of the Hypsistarians, an ancient Jewish-pagan sect of the Black Sea region who, in his understanding, sought to reverence, as being close to the Godhead, what came to their knowledge of the best and most perfect.[66] He also had an affinity for Jews, writing "Energy is the basis of everything. Every Jew, no matter how insignificant, is engaged in some decisive and immediate pursuit of a goal. They are the most perpetual people of the earth."[citation needed] In politics, Goethe was conservative. At the time of the French Revolution, he thought the enthusiasm of the students and professors to be a perversion of their energy and remained skeptical of the ability of the masses to govern.[67] Likewise, he did not oppose the War of Liberation (1813–15) waged by the German states against Napoleon, and remained aloof from the patriotic efforts to unite the various parts of Germany into one nation. Although often requested to write poems arousing nationalist passions, Goethe would always decline. In old age, he explained why this was so to Eckermann:

How could I write songs of hatred when I felt no hate? And, between ourselves, I never hated the French, although I thanked God when we were rid of them. How could I, to whom the only significant things are civilization [Kultur] and barbarism, hate a nation which is among the most cultivated in the world, and to which I owe a great part of my own culture? In any case this business of hatred between nations is a curious thing. You will always find it more powerful and barbarous on the lowest levels of civilization. But there exists a level at which it wholly disappears, and where one stands, so to speak, above the nations, and feels the weal or woe of a neighboring people as though it were one's own.[68]

Influence[edit]

Statue dedicated to Goethe in Chicago's Lincoln Park
Lincoln Park
(1913)

Goethe had a great effect on the nineteenth century. In many respects, he was the originator of many ideas which later became widespread. He produced volumes of poetry, essays, criticism, a theory of colours and early work on evolution and linguistics. He was fascinated by mineralogy, and the mineral goethite (iron oxide) is named after him.[69] His non-fiction writings, most of which are philosophic and aphoristic in nature, spurred the development of many thinkers, including Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, Schopenhauer, Søren Kierkegaard, Friedrich Nietzsche, Ernst Cassirer, Carl Jung, and Ludwig Wittgenstein.[citation needed] Along with Schiller, he was one of the leading figures of Weimar
Weimar
Classicism. Schopenhauer cited Goethe's novel Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship
Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship
as one of the four greatest novels ever written, along with Tristram Shandy, La Nouvelle Héloïse and Don Quixote.[5] Goethe embodied many of the contending strands in art over the next century: his work could be lushly emotional, and rigorously formal, brief and epigrammatic, and epic. He would argue that Classicism
Classicism
was the means of controlling art, and that Romanticism
Romanticism
was a sickness, even as he penned poetry rich in memorable images, and rewrote the formal rules of German poetry. His poetry was set to music by almost every major Austrian and German composer from Mozart to Mahler, and his influence would spread to French drama and opera as well. Beethoven
Beethoven
declared that a "Faust" Symphony would be the greatest thing for art. Liszt
Liszt
and Mahler
Mahler
both created symphonies in whole or in large part inspired by this seminal work, which would give the 19th century one of its most paradigmatic figures: Doctor Faustus.

Second Goetheanum

Mendelssohn plays to Goethe, 1830: painting by Moritz Oppenheim, 1864

The Faust
Faust
tragedy/drama, often called Das Drama der Deutschen (the drama of the Germans), written in two parts published decades apart, would stand as his most characteristic and famous artistic creation. Followers of the twentieth century esotericist Rudolf Steiner
Rudolf Steiner
built a theatre named the Goetheanum
Goetheanum
after him—where festival performances of Faust
Faust
are still performed. Goethe was also a cultural force, who argued that the organic nature of the land moulded the people and their customs—an argument that has recurred ever since. He argued that laws could not be created by pure rationalism, since geography and history shaped habits and patterns. This stood in sharp contrast to the prevailing Enlightenment view that reason was sufficient to create well-ordered societies and good laws.

Goethe memorial in front of the Alte Handelsbörse, Leipzig

It was to a considerable degree due to Goethe's reputation that the city of Weimar
Weimar
was chosen in 1919 as the venue for the national assembly, convened to draft a new constitution for what would become known as Germany's Weimar
Weimar
Republic. The Federal Republic of Germany's cultural institution, the Goethe-Institut
Goethe-Institut
is named after him, and promotes the study of German abroad and fosters knowledge about Germany by providing information on its culture, society and politics. The literary estate of Goethe in the Goethe and Schiller
Schiller
Archives was inscribed on UNESCO's Memory of the World Register
Memory of the World Register
in 2001 in recognition of its historical significance.[70] Goethe's influence was dramatic because he understood that there was a transition in European sensibilities, an increasing focus on sense, the indescribable, and the emotional. This is not to say that he was emotionalistic or excessive; on the contrary, he lauded personal restraint and felt that excess was a disease: "There is nothing worse than imagination without taste". He argued in his scientific works that a "formative impulse", which he said is operative in every organism, causes an organism to form itself according to its own distinct laws, and therefore rational laws or fiats could not be imposed at all from a higher, transcendent sphere; this placed him in direct opposition to those who attempted to form "enlightened" monarchies based on "rational" laws by, for example, Joseph II of Austria or the subsequent Emperor of the French, Napoleon I. He said in Scientific Studies:

We conceive of the individual animal as a small world, existing for its own sake, by its own means. Every creature is its own reason to be. All its parts have a direct effect on one another, a relationship to one another, thereby constantly renewing the circle of life; thus we are justified in considering every animal physiologically perfect. Viewed from within, no part of the animal is a useless or arbitrary product of the formative impulse (as so often thought). Externally, some parts may seem useless because the inner coherence of the animal nature has given them this form without regard to outer circumstance. Thus...[not] the question, What are they for? but rather, Where do they come from?[71]

Schiller, Alexander and Wilhelm von Humboldt, and Goethe in Jena, c. 1797

That change later became the basis for 19th-century thought: organic rather than geometrical, evolving rather than created, and based on sensibility and intuition rather than on imposed order, culminating in, as Goethe said, a "living quality", wherein the subject and object are dissolved together in a poise of inquiry. Consequently, Goethe embraced neither teleological nor deterministic views of growth within every organism. Instead, his view was that the world as a whole grows through continual, external, and internal strife. Moreover, Goethe did not embrace the mechanistic views that contemporaneous science subsumed during his time, and therewith he denied rationality's superiority as the sole interpreter of reality. His views make him, along with Adam Smith, Thomas Jefferson, and Ludwig van Beethoven, a figure in two worlds: on the one hand, devoted to the sense of taste, order, and finely crafted detail, which is the hallmark of the artistic sense of the Age of Reason
Age of Reason
and the neo-classical period of architecture; on the other, seeking a personal, intuitive, and personalized form of expression and society, firmly supporting the idea of self-regulating and organic systems. Thinkers such as Ralph Waldo Emerson
Ralph Waldo Emerson
would take up many similar ideas in the 1800s. Goethe's ideas on evolution would frame the question that Darwin and Wallace would approach within the scientific paradigm. The Serbian inventor and electrical engineer Nikola Tesla
Nikola Tesla
was heavily influenced by Goethe's Faust, his favorite poem, and had actually memorized the entire text. It was while reciting a certain verse that he was struck with the epiphany that would lead to the idea of the rotating magnetic field and ultimately, alternating current.[72] Bibliography[edit] Main article: Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
bibliography

The Life of Goethe by George Henry Lewes Goethe: The History of a Man by Emil Ludwig Goethe by Georg Brandes. Authorized translation from the Danish (2nd ed. 1916) by Allen W. Porterfield, New York, Crown publishers, 1936. "Crown edition, 1936." Title Wolfgang Goethe Goethe: his life and times by Richard Friedenthal Lotte in Weimar: The Beloved Returns by Thomas Mann Conversations with Goethe by Johann Peter Eckermann Goethe's World: as seen in letters and memoirs ed. by Berthold Biermann Goethe: Four Studies by Albert Schweitzer Goethe Poet and Thinker by E. M. Wilkinson and L. A. Willoughby Goethe and his Publishers by Siegfried Unseld Goethe by T. J. Reed Goethe. A Psychoanalytic Study, by Kurt R. Eissler The Life of Goethe. A Critical Biography by John Williams Goethe: The Poet and the Age (2 Vols.), by Nicholas Boyle Goethe's Concept of the Daemonic: After the Ancients, by Angus Nicholls Goethe and Rousseau: Resonances of their Mind, by Carl Hammer, Jr. Doctor Faustus of the popular legend, Marlowe, the Puppet-Play, Goethe, and Lenau, treated historically and critically. – A parallel between Goethe and Schiller. – An historic outline of German Literature , by Louis Pagel Goethe and Schiller, Essays on German Literature, by Hjalmar Hjorth Boyesen Tales for Transformation, trans. Scott Thompson Goethe-Wörterbuch (Goethe Dictionary, abbreviated GWb). Herausgegeben von der Berlin-Brandenburgischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, der Akademie der Wissenschaften in Göttingen und der Heidelberger Akademie der Wissenschaften. Stuttgart. Verlag W. Kohlhammer; ISBN 978-3-17-019121-1

See also[edit]

Poetry portal Philosophy portal Biography portal

Young Goethe in Love
Young Goethe in Love
(2010) Dora Stock
Dora Stock
– her encounters with the 16-year-old Goethe. Goethe Basin Johann-Wolfgang-von-Goethe-Gymnasium W. H. Murray – author of misattributed quotation "Until one is committed ..." Nature (Tobler essay), essay often mis-attributed to Goethe

Awards named after him

Goethe Awards Goethe Prize Hanseatic Goethe Prize

References[edit] Notes[edit]

^ "Goethe". Oxford Dictionary. ^ "Goethe". Merriam Webster Dictionary. ^ "Goethe". Random House Webster's Unabridged Dictionary. ^ "Classical Weimar
Weimar
UNESCO
UNESCO
Justification". Justification for UNESCO Heritage Cites. UNESCO. Retrieved 7 June 2012.  ^ a b Schopenhauer, Arthur. "The Art of Literature". The Essays of Arthur Schopenahuer. Retrieved 22 March 2015.  ^ a b Herman Grimm: Goethe. Vorlesungen gehalten an der Königlichen Universität zu Berlin. Vol. 1. J.G. Cotta'sche Buchhandlung Nachfolger, Stuttgart / Berlin 1923, p. 36 ^ Catharina was the daughter of Johann Wolfgang Textor, sheriff (Schultheiß) of Frankfurt, and Anna Margaretha Lindheimer. ^ von Goethe, Johann Wolfgang. The Autobiography of Goethe: truth and poetry, from my own life, Volume 1 (1897), translated by John Oxenford, pp. 114, 129 ^ Valerian Tornius (de): Goethe – Leben, Wirken und Schaffen. Ludwig-Röhrscheid-Verlag, Bonn 1949, p. 26 ^ Emil Ludwig: Goethe – Geschichte eines Menschen. Vol. 1. Ernst-Rowohlt-Verlag, Berlin 1926, pp. 17–18 ^ Karl Goedeke: Goethes Leben. Cotta / Kröner, Stuttgart around 1883, pp. 16–17 ^ "Originally speech of Goethe to the ''Shakespeare's Day'' by University Duisburg". Uni-duisburg-essen.de. Retrieved 17 July 2014.  ^ Herman Grimm: Goethe. Vorlesungen gehalten an der Königlichen Universität zu Berlin. Vol. 1. J. G. Cotta'sche Buchhandlung Nachfolger, Stuttgart / Berlin 1923, p. 81 ^ Karl Robert Mandelkow, Bodo Morawe: Goethes Briefe. 2. edition. Vol. 1: Briefe der Jahre 1764–1786. Christian Wegner, Hamburg 1968, p. 571 ^ Valerian Tornius: Goethe – Leben, Wirken und Schaffen. Ludwig-Röhrscheid-Verlag, Bonn 1949, p. 60 ^ a b Mandelkow, Karl Robert (1962). Goethes Briefe. Vol. 1: Briefe der Jahre 1764–1786. Christian Wegner Verlag. p. 589 ^ Mandelkow, Karl Robert (1962). Goethes Briefe. Vol. 1: Briefe der Jahre 1764–1786. Christian Wegner Verlag. pp. 590–92 ^ See Goethe and his Publishers ^ Hume Brown, Peter (1920). Life of Goethe. pp. 224–25.  ^ "Goethe und Carl August – Freundschaft und Politik" by Gerhard Müller, in Th. Seemann (ed.): Anna Amalia, Carl August und das Ereignis Weimar. Jahrbuch der Klassik Stiftung Weimar
Weimar
2007. Göttingen: Wallstein Verlag, pp. 132–64 (in German) ^  Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Stein, Charlotte von". Encyclopædia Britannica
Encyclopædia Britannica
(11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.  ^ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
at Encyclopædia Britannica ^ Wilson, W. Daniel (1999). Das Goethe-Tabu [The Goethe Taboo: Protest and Human Rights in Classical Weimar] (in German). Munich: Deutsche Taschenbuch Verlag (dtv). pp. 49–57, also the entire book. ISBN 3-423-30710-2. ; "The Goethe Case by W. Daniel Wilson" – The New York Review of Books. ^ Safranski, Rüdiger (1990). Schopenhauer and the Wild Years of Philosophy. Harvard University Press. ISBN 0-674-79275-0.  ^ "Goethe's third summer".  ^ Todd 2003, p. 89. ^ Mercer-Taylor 2000, pp. 41–2, 93. ^ Todd 2003, pp. 188–190, 269–270. ^ Carl Vogel: "Die letzte Krankheit Goethe's". In: Journal der practischen Heilkunde (1833). ^ Grove's Dictionary of Music and Musicians, 5th ed., 1954 ^ Baumer, Rachel Van M.; Brandon, James R. (1993) [1981]. Sanskrit Drama in Performance. Motilal Banarsidass Publ. p. 9. ISBN 9788120807723.  ^ "The Stigma of Suicide – A history". Pips Project. Archived from the original on 6 October 2007.  See also: "Ophelia's Burial".  ^ The Autobiography of Goethe Book 13 pp. 502ff ^ Goethe's Plays, by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, translated into English with Introductions by Charles E. Passage, Publisher Benn Limited, 1980, ISBN 0510000878. ISBN 978-0510000875 ^ Wigmore, Richard. "A meeting of genius: Beethoven
Beethoven
and Goethe, July 1812". Gramophone. Haymarket. Retrieved 6 July 2012.  ^ "Johann Wolfgang von Goethe". The Nature Institute. Retrieved 28 August 2008.  ^ Darwin, C. R. (1859). On the origin of species by means of natural selection, or the preservation of favoured races in the struggle for life (1st ed.). John Murray.  ^ K. Barteczko and M. Jacob (1999). "A re-evaluation of the premaxillary bone in humans". Anatomy
Anatomy
and Embryology. 207 (6): 417–437. doi:10.1007/s00429-003-0366-x. PMID 14760532.  ^ Goethe, J.W. Italian Journey. Robert R Heitner. Suhrkamp ed., vol. 6.  ^ Versuch die Metamorphose der Pflanzen zu Erklären. Library of Congress. Retrieved 2 January 2018.  ^ Magnus, Rudolf; Schmid, Gunther (20 September 2004). Metamorphosis of Plants. Google Books. ISBN 978-1-4179-4984-7. Retrieved 28 August 2008.  ^ Frank Teichmann (tr. Jon McAlice) "The Emergence of the Idea of Evolution
Evolution
in the Time of Goethe" first published in Interdisciplinary Aspects of Evolution, Urachhaus (1989) ^ Balzer, Georg (1966). Goethe als Gartenfreund. München: F. Bruckmann KG.  ^ Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, Hegel's Philosophy of Nature: Encyclopaedia of the Philosophical Sciences (1830), part 2 translated by A. V. Miller, illustrated, reissue, reprint Oxford University Press, 2005 ISBN 0-19-927267-0, ISBN 978-0-19-927267-9, Google Books ^ Aristotle wrote that colour is a mixture of light and dark, since white light is always seen as somewhat darkened when it is seen as a colour. (Aristotle, On Sense and its Objects, III, 439b, 20 ff.: "White and black may be juxtaposed in such a way that by the minuteness of the division of its parts each is invisible while their product is visible, and thus colour may be produced.") ^ Bockemuhl, M. (1991). Turner. Taschen, Koln. ISBN 3-8228-6325-4.  ^ Goethe, Johann (1810). Theory of Colours, paragraph No. 50.  ^ "Goethe's Color Theory". Retrieved 28 August 2008.  ^ "The Experiment as Mediator between Subject and Object". Archived from the original on 10 November 2011. Retrieved 26 June 2014.  ^ "The Theory of Knowledge Implicit in Goethe's World Conception". Retrieved 28 August 2008.  ^ "Goethe's World View". Retrieved 28 August 2008.  ^ 'Goethe's Message of Beauty in Our Twentieth Century World', (Friedrich) Frederick Hiebel, RSCP California. ISBN 0-916786-37-4 ^ Outing Goethe and His Age; edited by Alice A. Kuzniar.[page needed] ^ Bullough, V.L. (1990). History in adult human sexual behavior with children and adolescents in Western societies (Pedophilia: Biosocial Dimensions ed.). Springer-Verlag New York Inc. p. 72. ISBN 978-1-4613-9684-0. Retrieved 27 April 2016.  ^ Goethe, Johann Wolfgang (1976). Gedenkausgabe der Werke, Briefe und Gespräche. Zürich : Artemis Verl. p. 686. ASIN B003SEWCVU. Retrieved 27 April 2016.  ^ The phrase Goethe uses is "Mischmasch von Irrtum und Gewalt", in his "Zahme Xenien" IX, Goethes Gedichte in Zeitlicher Folge, Insel Verlag 1982 ISBN 3458140131, p. 1121 ^ Arnold Bergsträsser, "Goethe's View of Christ", Modern Philology, Vol. 46, No. 3 (Feb. 1949), pp. 172–202; M. Tetz, "Mischmasch von Irrtum und Gewalt. Zu Goethes Vers auf die Kirchengeschichte", Zeitschrift für Theologie und Kirche 88 (1991) pp. 339–63 ^ Goethe in East Germany 1949–1989: Toward a History of the Goethe reception in the GDR, p.126. Books.google.es. Retrieved 17 July 2014.  ^ Conversations of Goethe with Eckermann and Soret, Vol. II, pp. 423–24. Books.google.es. Retrieved 17 July 2014.  ^ The Crucified God: The Cross of Christ As the Foundation and Criticism of Christian Theology, SCM Press, London, 1973, pp. 27–28. Books.google.es. Retrieved 17 July 2014.  ^ 11 March 1832, Oxenford translation ^ Boyle 1992, 353 ^ ''Venetian Epigrams''. Books.google.com. Retrieved 17 July 2014.  ^ Venetian Epigrams, 66, ["Wenige sind mir jedoch wie Gift und Schlange zuwider; Viere: Rauch des Tabacks, Wanzen und Knoblauch und †."]. The cross symbol he drew has been variously understood as meaning Christianity, Christ, or death. ^ Friedrich Nietzsche, The Will to Power, § 95 ^ Lletter to Boisserée dated 22 March 1831 quoted in Peter Boerner, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
1832/1982: A Biographical Essay. Bonn: Inter Nationes, 1981 p. 82 ^ McCabe, Joseph. 'Goethe: The Man and His Character'. p. 343 ^ Will Durant (1967). The Story of Civilization Volume 10: Rousseau and Revolution. Simon&Schuster. p. 607.  ^ Webmineral.com. Retrieved 21 August 2009, ^ "The literary estate of Goethe in the Goethe and Schiller
Schiller
Archives". UNESCO
UNESCO
Memory of the World Programme. Retrieved 29 September 2017.  ^ Scientific Studies, Suhrkamp ed., vol. 12, p. 121; trans. Douglas Miller ^ Seifer, Marc J. (1998) "Wizard: The Life and Times of Nikola Tesla: Biography of a Genius", Citadel Press, pp. 22, 308

Sources[edit]

Mercer-Taylor, Peter (2000). The Life of Mendelssohn. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-521-63972-7.  Todd, R. Larry (2003). Mendelssohn – A Life in Music. Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-511043-9. 

Further reading[edit]

Ferdinand Mount, "Super Goethe" (review of Rüdiger Safranski, Goethe: Life as a Work of Art, translated from the German by David Dollenmayer, Liveright, 651 pp.), The New York Review of Books, vol. LXIV, no. 20 (21 December 2017), pp. 12, 14, 16.

External links[edit]

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(public domain audiobooks) "Works by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe". Zeno.org (in German).  Goethe on In Our Time at the BBC. Goethe in English at Poems Found in Translation The Lied and Art Song Texts Page – Poems of Goethe set to music Goethe's dual language poems (from German to other languages) Goethe Statue – Lincoln Park
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v t e

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Poems

Erlkönig Ganymed Gingo biloba Heidenröslein Hermann and Dorothea Der König in Thule Marienbad Elegy Nur wer die Sehnsucht kennt Prometheus Roman Elegies The Sorcerer's Apprentice Welcome and Farewell Wanderer's Nightsong West–östlicher Divan Xenien

Plays

Der Bürgergeneral Clavigo Faust

Faust
Faust
I Faust
Faust
II

Egmont Erwin und Elmire Götz von Berlichingen Iphigenia in Tauris The Natural Daughter Torquato Tasso

Prose

Elective Affinities The Green Snake and the Beautiful Lily The Sorrows of Young Werther Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship Wilhelm Meister's Journeyman Years

Autobiographical

Dichtung und Wahrheit Italian Journey

Journals

Propyläen

Natural sciences

Metamorphosis of Plants Theory of Colours

colour wheel

Conversations

Gespräche mit Goethe

Related

Bibliography Christine Vulpius (wife) Katharina Elisabeth Goethe
Katharina Elisabeth Goethe
(mother) Goethean science Weimar
Weimar
Classicism Goethe-Institut

Goethe Medal

Goethe House
Goethe House
in Weimar

National museum

House and museum (Frankfurt) Goethe-Gesellschaft Goethe Monument (Berlin) Goethe– Schiller
Schiller
Monument (Weimar) Goethe– Schiller
Schiller
Monument (Milwaukee) Goethe Prize Goethe Society of North America Goetheanum Young Goethe in Love
Young Goethe in Love
(2010 film)

v t e

Romanticism

Countries

Denmark England (literature) France (literature) Germany Norway Poland Russia (literature) Scotland

Movements

Bohemianism Counter-Enlightenment Dark romanticism Düsseldorf School Gesamtkunstwerk Gothic fiction Gothic Revival (architecture) Hudson River School Indianism Nazarene movement Ossian Romantic hero Romanticism
Romanticism
in science Romantic nationalism Opium and Romanticism Transcendentalism Ultra-Romanticism Wallenrodism

Writers

Abovian Alencar Alfieri Andersen A. v. Arnim B. v. Arnim Azevedo Baratashvili Baratynsky Barbauld (Aikin) Batyushkov Baudelaire Beer Bertrand Blake Botev Brentano Bryant Burns Byron Castelo Branco Castilho Cazotte Chateaubriand Chavchavadze Clare Coleridge Cooper De Quincey Dias Dumas Eichendorff Emerson Eminescu Espronceda Fouqué Foscolo Garrett Gautier Goethe Grimm Brothers Gutzkow Hauff Hawthorne Heine Heliade Herculano Hoffmann Hölderlin Hugo Ilić Irving Jakšić Jean Paul Karamzin Keats Kleist Krasiński Lamartine Larra Leopardi Lermontov Lowell Macedonski Mácha Magalhães Malczewski Manzoni Maturin Mérimée Mickiewicz Musset Nalbandian Nerval Nodier Norwid Novalis Oehlenschläger Orbeliani Poe Polidori Potocki Prešeren Pushkin Raffi Schiller Schwab Scott Seward M. Shelley P. B. Shelley Shevchenko Słowacki De Staël Stendhal Tieck Tyutchev Uhland Vörösmarty Vyazemsky Wordsworth Zhukovsky Zorrilla

Music

Adam Alkan Auber Beethoven Bellini Bennett Berlioz Bertin Berwald Brahms Bruckner Cherubini Chopin Dargomyzhsky Félicien David Ferdinand David Donizetti Fauré Field Franck Franz Glinka Gomis Halévy Kalkbrenner Liszt Loewe Marschner Masarnau Méhul Fanny Mendelssohn Felix Mendelssohn Méreaux Meyerbeer Moniuszko Moscheles Mussorgsky Niedermeyer Onslow Paganini Prudent Reicha Rimsky-Korsakov Rossini Rubinstein Schubert Clara Schumann Robert Schumann Smetana Sor Spohr Spontini Thalberg Verdi Voříšek Wagner Weber

Theologians and philosophers

Chaadayev Coleridge Feuerbach Fichte Goethe Hegel Khomyakov Müller Ritschl Rousseau Schiller A. Schlegel F. Schlegel Schopenhauer Schleiermacher Tieck Wackenroder

Visual artists

Aivazovsky Bierstadt Blake Bonington Bryullov Chassériau Church Constable Cole Corot Dahl David d'Angers Delacroix Friedrich Fuseli Géricault Girodet Głowacki Goya Gude Hayez Janmot Jones Kiprensky Koch Lampi Leutze Loutherbourg Maison Martin Michałowski Palmer Porto-Alegre Préault Révoil Richard Rude Runge Saleh Scheffer Stattler Stroj Tidemand Tropinin Turner Veit Ward Wiertz

 « Age of Enlightenment Realism » 

v t e

The Age of Enlightenment

Topics

Atheism Capitalism Civil liberties Counter-Enlightenment Critical thinking Deism Democracy Empiricism Encyclopédistes Enlightened absolutism Free markets Haskalah Humanism Human rights Liberalism Liberté, égalité, fraternité Methodological skepticism Nationalism Natural philosophy Objectivity Rationality Rationalism Reason Reductionism Sapere aude Science Scientific method Socialism Universality Weimar
Weimar
Classicism

Thinkers

France

Jean le Rond d'Alembert Étienne Bonnot de Condillac Marquis de Condorcet Denis Diderot Claude Adrien Helvétius Baron d'Holbach Georges-Louis Leclerc Montesquieu François Quesnay Jean-Jacques Rousseau Marquis de Sade Voltaire

Germany

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe Johann Georg Hamann Johann Gottfried von Herder Friedrich Heinrich Jacobi Immanuel Kant Gotthold Ephraim Lessing Moses Mendelssohn Friedrich Schiller Thomas Wizenmann

Greece

Neophytos Doukas Theoklitos Farmakidis Rigas Feraios Theophilos Kairis Adamantios Korais

Ireland

Robert Boyle Edmund Burke

Italy

Cesare Beccaria Gaetano Filangieri Antonio Genovesi Pietro Verri

The Netherlands

Spinoza Hugo Grotius Balthasar Bekker Bernard Nieuwentyt Frederik van Leenhof Christiaan Huygens Antonie van Leeuwenhoek Jan Swammerdam

Poland

Tadeusz Czacki Hugo Kołłątaj Stanisław Konarski Ignacy Krasicki Julian Ursyn Niemcewicz Stanisław August Poniatowski Jędrzej Śniadecki Stanisław Staszic Józef Wybicki Andrzej Stanisław Załuski Józef Andrzej Załuski

Portugal

Sebastião José de Carvalho e Melo

Russia

Catherine II

Spain

Charles III Benito Jerónimo Feijóo y Montenegro

United Kingdom (Scotland)

Francis Bacon Jeremy Bentham Joseph Black James Boswell Adam Ferguson Edward Gibbon Robert Hooke David Hume Francis Hutcheson Samuel Johnson John Locke Isaac Newton Thomas Reid Adam Smith Mary Wollstonecraft

United States

Benjamin Franklin Thomas Jefferson James Madison George Mason Thomas Paine

v t e

German language
German language
literature

Related articles

German language History of Germany History of Austria History of Switzerland History of Liechtenstein Medieval German literature Sturm und Drang Weimar
Weimar
Classicism Romanticism Literary realism Weimar
Weimar
culture Exilliteratur Austrian literature Swiss literature German studies

Related categories

Austrian writers German writers Liechtenstein writers Swiss writers in German

Medieval literature

Dietmar von Aist Reinmar von Hagenau Hartmann von Aue Walther von der Vogelweide Wolfram von Eschenbach Albrecht von Johansdorf Heinrich von Morungen Nibelungenlied Gottfried von Strassburg

Early modern literature

Simon Dach Paul Fleming Hans Folz Hans Jakob Christoffel von Grimmelshausen Andreas Gryphius Christian Hoffmann von Hoffmannswaldau Johann Michael Moscherosch Martin Opitz Hans Sachs Angelus Silesius Anthony Ulrich, Duke of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel Georg Wickram

18th century

Barthold Heinrich Brockes Christian Gellert Johann Wolfgang von Goethe Johann Christoph Gottsched Johann Christian Günther Friedrich Hölderlin Friedrich Gottlieb Klopstock Jakob Michael Reinhold Lenz Gotthold Ephraim Lessing Novalis
Novalis
(Friedrich von Hardenberg) Jean Paul Friedrich Schiller Johann Gottfried Schnabel Christoph Martin Wieland

19th century

Bettina von Arnim Ludwig Achim von Arnim Clemens Brentano Georg Büchner Adelbert von Chamisso Annette von Droste-Hülshoff Marie von Ebner-Eschenbach Joseph von Eichendorff Theodor Fontane Gustav Freytag Jeremias Gotthelf Franz Grillparzer Jacob Grimm Wilhelm Grimm Gerhart Hauptmann Christian Friedrich Hebbel Johann Peter Hebel Heinrich Heine Georg Herwegh Paul Heyse E. T. A. Hoffmann Friedrich Hölderlin Gottfried Keller Heinrich von Kleist Nikolaus Lenau Karl May Conrad Ferdinand Meyer Eduard Mörike Johann Nestroy Wilhelm Raabe Adalbert Stifter Theodor Storm Ludwig Tieck Ludwig Uhland

20th century

Ingeborg Bachmann Hermann Bahr Johannes R. Becher Gottfried Benn Thomas Bernhard Heinrich Böll Volker Braun Bertolt Brecht Rolf Dieter Brinkmann Hermann Broch Arnolt Bronnen Hermann Burger Elias Canetti Paul Celan Alfred Döblin Heimito von Doderer Friedrich Dürrenmatt Lion Feuchtwanger Marieluise Fleißer Erich Fried Max Frisch Stefan George Günter Grass Peter Handke Marlen Haushofer Hermann Hesse Georg Heym Hugo von Hofmannsthal Ödön von Horváth Ricarda Huch Peter Huchel Ernst Jandl Uwe Johnson Ernst Jünger Franz Kafka Erich Kästner Hermann Kesten Irmgard Keun Sarah Kirsch Egon Erwin Kisch Karl Kraus Else Lasker-Schüler Gert Ledig Siegfried Lenz Heinrich Mann Klaus Mann Thomas Mann Christian Morgenstern Erich Mühsam Heiner Müller Adolf Muschg Robert Musil Erich Maria Remarque Rainer Maria Rilke Joseph Roth Nelly Sachs Ernst von Salomon Paul Scheerbart Arthur Schnitzler Kurt Schwitters W. G. Sebald Anna Seghers Ernst Toller Georg Trakl Kurt Tucholsky Robert Walser Josef Weinheber Peter Weiss Franz Werfel Christa Wolf Fritz Zorn (Fritz Angst) Stefan Zweig

Contemporary writers

Zsuzsa Bánk Thomas Brussig Jenny Erpenbeck Rainald Goetz Durs Grünbein Peter Handke Elfriede Jelinek Reinhard Jirgl Wladimir Kaminer Daniel Kehlmann Alexander Kluge Christian Kracht Monika Maron Terézia Mora Herta Müller Emine Sevgi Özdamar Julya Rabinowich Rafik Schami Ingo Schulze Botho Strauß Yoko Tawada Uwe Timm Martin Walser Peter Wawerzinek Wolf Wondratschek Feridun Zaimoğlu Juli Zeh

German-language Nobel laureates

Theodor Mommsen Rudolf Christoph Eucken Paul Heyse Gerhart Hauptmann Carl Spitteler Thomas Mann Hermann Hesse Nelly Sachs Heinrich Böll Elias Canetti Günter Grass Elfriede Jelinek Herta Müller

German-language literary awards

Ingeborg Bachmann
Ingeborg Bachmann
Prize Georg Büchner
Georg Büchner
Prize Sigmund Freud Prize Adelbert von Chamisso
Adelbert von Chamisso
Prize Hans Fallada Prize Goethe Prize Heinrich Heine
Heinrich Heine
Prize Kleist Prize Leipzig Book Fair Prize Nelly Sachs
Nelly Sachs
Prize

Associated subjects

v t e

Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship
Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship
by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Music

"None but the Lonely Heart"

"Nur wer die Sehnsucht kennt"

Adaptations

Mignon
Mignon
(1866 opera) The Wrong Move
The Wrong Move
(1975 film)

Other

Wilhelm Meister's Journeyman Years (sequel)

v t e

The Sorrows of Young Werther
The Sorrows of Young Werther
by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Films

The Novel of Werther
The Novel of Werther
(1938) Young Goethe in Love
Young Goethe in Love
(2010)

Operas

Werther
Werther
(1892)

Related literature

Die neuen Leiden des jungen W. Lotte in Weimar: The Beloved Returns Sorrows of Werther

v t e

Elective Affinities
Elective Affinities
by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Film

Elective Affinities
Elective Affinities
(1974) Tarot (1986) The Elective Affinities
Elective Affinities
(1996) Sometime in August (2009)

Art

Elective Affinities

Related

Arcadia The Nemesis of Faith

Authority control

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