It's been 5 years since this blog "took off" in its own special way. For that we largely have Ruth to thank whose questions about possibly being related to Ernst Collin. Together these ignited an obsessive flame that still burns. Es wa eine weiter Weg, aber wie beim guten Wein hat sich das Warten sehr gelohnt. The Boss Dog Press edition is out and all preorders have shipped. To say I am pleased is a massive understatement, and having Don Rash and the Boss Dog Press create this edition, especially with the photographs of John Hans Schiff was a great honor.
It's been a long road, but the wait like with a good wine very much worth it. For more information and to order, see the Boss Dog Press site or click the link at left. Deluxe edition left and regular edition right. Both come with a matching slipcase Beide mit passenden Schuber geliefert Titel mit Facsimile der er Erstausgabe Title page spread with facsimile of original edition I hatte auch die Freude 2 Exemplare dieser Ausgabe zwecks Ausstellungen zu binden und bin mit den Ergebnissen ganz zufrieden.
Eines ist unten zu sehen, mit mehr unter diesem Link , inkl. Letzere sind schon mehr als mal heruntergeladen seit ich sie so geteilt habe. It was also my pleasure to bind two copies, ostensibly for exhibitions. I'm rather pleased by how they turned out. The latter has been accessed over times since first appearing online. Also bound in are an extra set of enlarged photographs and the prospectus. Bound The bibliography of titles that started with some 60, grew to when I shared the bibliography, now stands at The bulk of those new additions are from the Berliner Volkszeitung , where Ernst was an editor and art critic.
Based on the overall quality of the OCR of text from that period, I'm sure there are more within the pages. The bi-lingual nature was a surprise to me. There were also other articles in unknown-to-me publications. Ernst Collin datiert Dezember Reason for trading-up was that this copy had all inserts and the remaining two issues from The Heftlade did not appear in Collecting these was big, still is to some today.
Well in my copy there was an exlibris by Walter Kampmann for none other than Ernst Collin. The exlibris was created in December of Angeregt von Ernst und Anderen, habe ich sogar selbst Pergament aus Fisch gemacht. Encouraged by Ernst and others, I even made my own parchment from fish. Here they are before and after cleaning today: pic. Und so kommt zu meiner Sammlung mit einem echten Pressbengel And so, to my collection of a genuine pressbengel, Werkstoffe als Metapher I now add this wonderful painting by Don Rash of a bonefolder.
It is painted on a used piece of binders board that once protected the tops of his benches. Material as metaphor Saturday, April 7, Mein Pressbengel. Habe endlich meinen eigenen Pressbengel. Finally have my own Pressbengel. Labels: Pressbengel , Tools.
War Collin auch Freimaurer? Was he also a Mason? Auch interessant ist das die 30 Exemplare der Luxus-Ausgabe in Leder oder Pergament erworben konnten. Ob dieser aus der Sammlung Max Hettler einer davon ist? The top indicated that it was looking to buy back all out-of-print titles it published and asking for offers and prices. There is also a description of the deluxe edition of 30 copies that could be ordered in either full-leather or parchment.
Could this one from the Max Hettler collection be one of these? Ob das stimmt? Below the pricing for the Pressbengel , leather or parchment for 85 Marks, paper for 4. This was during the period of hyper-inflation so need to do some real math as hyperinflation currency was printed at ever greater denominations see below. Can that be right? How many of these bills of Notgeld Hyperinflation currency would have been needed in ? Don Rash and his assistants have done a beautiful job with the printing and binding.
As described in the prospectus , the deluxe edition is bound in quarter leather with hidden corners and pastepapers on the sides. The title spread I'm going to say that I'm floored by how beautifully these are looking - very much in keeping with an aesthetic Ernst Collin would have approved of, and enjoyed. The printing is done, and even the printer can't believe it! As in the past 5 years, on May 31st, Ernst Collin's birthday This would have been his th I share updates from my research and findings into his life and work.
Wie in den 5 vergangenen Jahren gebe ich am Very nice to have both of those. The Italian deluxe edition from This copy Sewn on parchment slips with leather spine and paper covered boards. Die italienische Vorzugsausgabe von , dieses Exemplar Regrettably, the Boss Dog Press is still in the printing stage of the letterpress English edition The prospectus is availabl e if you are interested in the deluxe with leather , regular paper case , and loose sheet editions The download, print, and bind version of that edition with different illustrations was made available, and has been downloaded well over times in the past year or so, including for use in binding workshops.
Das Prospectus hat aber alle angeben zu der Vorzugsausgabe in halb-Leder, der normalen in Kleisterpapier, und der losen Bogen zum selbst binden. Collin and Ernst June 6th of saw the publication of my family history of the Collins Wilhelm, Georg, Ernst in online form, and in both English and German. As often happens too often some typographical and formatting errors got through, especially in the German version that needed to be corrected. Thank you online publishing. Deutsch Die Collins: W. The master file for this is available separately online and in Google Drive Collin in particular.
In total, Die Collins and The Collins were downloaded over times. Die Hauptdatei dazu gibt es auch hier und in tabellarischer Form bei Google Drive. Collin hatten. Among these were the Bernsteinhexe and Die wahre Geschichte des Clavigo. Dates are publication dates, not binding dates. The owners were largely interested in determining the binding dates, in part due to idiosyncrasies with the bindings. Daten sind die der Herausgebung, nicht des Einbands.
Collin also provided covers for periodicals further below in link. I described W. Collin producing trade bindings in an earlier post, and was surprised to find mention of W. Collin providing just the covers, in this case for the journal Pan. Am anderen Ende der buchbinderischen Scala stellte sich heraus das W. Notice about W. Collin book covers Hinweis zu W. Collin monogram designed by Otto Eckmann on eBay. Collin entworfen. Otto Eckmann monogram for W. Collin Below it is dropped onto the letterhead Eckmann designed for W.
I h ad discovered the letterhead in an article by Walter Dammann on German calligraphers. Otto Eckmann letterhead for W. Collin Finally, it has been nice to see the work I have done around the Collins over the past years begin showing up in antiquarian dealer and auction listings. Below two examples, one for the bindery of W. Collin, and one for Der Pressbengel. Der Pressbengel , Berlin, Die zweite Auflage erschien in Exemplaren.
This search for the classic ideal is reflected in the works he completed or wrote under the Italian sky. The calm beauty of Greek tragedy is seen in the new iambic version of Iphigenie auf Tauris ; the classicism of the Renaissance gives the ground-tone to the wonderful drama of Torquato Tasso , in which the conflict of poetic genius with the prosaic world is transmuted into imperishable poetry.
Classic, too, in this sense, were the plans of a drama on Iphigenie auf Delphos and of an epic, Nausikaa. Most interesting of all, however, is the reflection of the classic spirit in works already begun in earlier days, such as Egmont and Faust. The former drama was finished in Italy and appeared in , the latter was brought a step further forward, part of it being published as a Fragment in Disappointment in more senses than one awaited Goethe on his return to Weimar. He came back from Italy with a new philosophy of life, a philosophy at once classic and pagan , and with very definite ideas of what constituted literary excellence.
But Germany had not advanced; in his countrymen were still under the influence of that Sturm and Drang from which the poet had fled.
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The times seemed to him more out of joint than ever, and he withdrew into himself. Even his relations to the old friends were changed. Frau von Stein had not known of his flight to Italy until she received a letter from Rome; but he looked forward to her welcome on his return. The months of absence, however, the change he had undergone, and doubtless those lighter loves of which the Romische Elegien bear evidence, weakened the Weimar memories; if he left Weimar as Frau von Stein's lover he returned only as her friend; and she naturally resented the change.
Goethe, meanwhile, satisfied to continue the freer customs to which he had adapted himself in Rome, found a new mistress in Christiane Vulpius , the least interesting of all the women who attracted him. But Christiane gradually filled up a gap in the poet's life; she gave him, quietly, unobtrusively, without making demands on him, the comforts of a home. She was not accepted by court society; it did not matter to her that even Goethe's intimate friends ignored her; and she, who had suited the poet's whim when he desired to shut himself off from all that might dim the recollection of Italy, became with the years an indispensable helpmate to him.
On the birth in of his son, Goethe had some thought of legalizing his relations with Christiane, but this intention was not realized until , when the invasion of Weimar by the French made him fear for both life and property. The period of Goethe's life which succeeded his return from Italy was restless and unsettled; relieved of his state duties, he returned in to Venice, only to be disenchanted with the Italy he had loved so intensely a year or two before.
A journey with the duke of Weimar to Breslau followed, and in he accompanied his master on that campaign against France which ended so ingloriously for the German arms at Valmy. In later years Goethe published his account both of this Campagne in Frankreich and of the Belagerung von Mainz , at which he was also present in His literary work naturally suffered under these distractions.
Tasso, and the edition of the Schriften in which it was to appear, had still to be completed on his return from Italy; the Riimische Elegien, perhaps the most Latin of all his works, were published in , and the Venetianische Epigramme, the result of the second visit to Italy, in The French Revolution , in which all Europe was engrossed, was in Goethe's eyes only another proof that the passing of the old regime meant the abrogation of all law and order, and he gave voice to his antagonism to the new democratic principles in the dramas Der Grosskophta , Der Burgergeneral , and in the unfinished fragments Die Aufgeregten and Das Miidchen von Oberkirch.
The spirited translation of the epic of Reinecke Fuchs he took up as a relief and an antidote to the social disruption of the time. Two:new interests, however, strengthened the ties between Goethe and Weimar, - ties which the Italian journey had threatened to sever: his appointment in as director of the ducal theatre, a post which he occupied for twenty-two years, and his absorption in scientific studies. In he published his important Versuch, die Metamorphose der Pflanzen zu erkleiren, which was an even more fundamental achievement for the new science of comparative morphology than his discovery some six years earlier of the existence of a formation in the human jaw - bone analogous to the intermaxillary bone in apes; and in and appeared two parts of his Beitrage zur Optik.
Meanwhile, however, Goethe had again taken up the novel of the theatre which he had begun years before, with a view to finishing it and including it in the edition of his Neue Schriften Wilhelm Meisters theatralische Sendung became Wilhelm Meisters Lehrjahre; the novel of purely theatrical interests was widened out to embrace the history of a young man's apprenticeship to life. The change of plan explains, although it may not exculpate, the formlessness and loose construction of the work, its extremes of realistic detail and poetic allegory.
A hero, who was probably originally intended to demonstrate the failure of the vacillating temperament when brought face to face with the problems of art, proved ill-adapted to demonstrate those precepts for the guidance of life with which the Lehrjahre closes; unstable of purpose, Wilhelm Meister is not so much an illustration of the author's life-philosophy as a lay-figure on which he demonstrates his views. Wilhelm Meister is a work of extraordinary variety, ranging from the commonplace realism of the troupe of strolling players to the poetic romanticism of Mignon and the harper; its flashes of intuitive criticism and its weighty apothegms add to its value as a Bildungsroman in the best sense of that word.
Of all Goethe's works, this exerted the most immediate and lasting influence on German literature; it served as a model for the best fiction of the next thirty years. In completing Wilhelm Meister, Goethe found a sympathetic and encouraging critic in Schiller, to whom he owed in great measure his renewed interest in poetry.
After years of tentative approaches on Schiller's part, years in which that poet concealed even from himself his desire for a friendly understanding with Goethe, the favourable moment arrived; it was in June , when Schiller was seeking collaborators for his new periodical Die Horen; and his invitation addressed to Goethe was the beginning of a friendship which continued unbroken until the younger poet's death. The friendship of Goethe and Schiller, of which their correspondence is a priceless record, had its limitations; it was purely intellectual in character, a certain barrier of personal reserve being maintained to the last.
But for the literary life of both poets the gain was incommensurable. As far as actual work was concerned, Goethe went his own way as he had always been accustomed to do; but the mere fact that he devoted himself with increasing interest to literature was due to Schiller's stimulus. It was Schiller, too, who induced him to undertake those studies on the nature of epic and dramatic poetry which resulted in the epic of Hermann and Dorothea and the fragment of the Achilleis; without the friendship there would have been no Xenien and no ballads, and it was his younger friend's encouragement which induced Goethe to betake himself once more to the "misty path" of Faust, and bring the first part of that drama to a conclusion.
Goethe's share in the Xenien may be briefly dismissed. This collection of distichs, written in collaboration with Schiller, was prompted by the indifference and animosity of contemporary criticism, and its disregard for what the two poets regarded as the higher interests of German poetry. The Xenien succeeded as a retaliation on the critics, but the masterpieces which followed them proved in the long run much more effective weapons against the prevailing mediocrity.
Prose works like the Unterhaltungen deutscher Ausgewanderten were unworthy of the poet's genius, and the translation of Benvenuto Cellini's Life was only a translation. But in appeared Hermann and Dorothea, one of Goethe's most perfect poems. It is indeed remarkable - when we consider by how much reflection and theoretic discussion the composition of the poem was preceded and accompanied - that it should make upon the reader so simple and "naive" an impression; in this respect it is the triumph of an art that conceals art.
Goethe has here taken a simple story of village life, mirrored in it the most pregnant ideas of his time, and presented it with a skill which may well be called Homeric; but he has discriminated with the insight of genius between the Homeric method of reproducing the heroic life of primitive Greece and the same method as adapted to the commonplace happenings of 18th-century Germany. In this respect he was undoubtedly guided by a forerunner who has more right than he to the attribute "naive," by J.
Voss, the author of Luise. Hardly less imposing in their calm, placid perfection are the poems with which, in friendly rivalry, Goethe seconded the more popular ballads of his friend; Der Zauberlehrling, Der Gott and die Bayadere, Die Braut von Korintli, Alexis and Dora, Der neue Pausias and Die schone Miillerin - a cycle of poems in the style of the Volkslied - are among the masterpieces of Goethe's poetry.
On the other hand, even the friendship with Schiller did not help him to add to his reputation as a dramatist. Die natiirliche Tochter , in which he began to embody his ideas of the Revolution on a wide canvas , proved impossible on the stage, and the remaining dramas, which were to have formed a trilogy, were never written. Goethe's classic principles, when applied to the swift , direct art of the theatre, were doomed to failure, and Die natiirliche Tochter, notwithstanding its good theoretic intention, remains the most lifeless and shadowy of all his dramas. Even less in touch with the living present were the various prologues and Festspiele, such as Paldophron and Neoterpe , Was wir bringers , which in these years he composed for the Weimar theatre.
Goethe's classicism brought him into inevitable antagonism with the new Romantic movement which had been inaugurated in by the Athenaeum , edited by the brothers Schlegel. The sharpness of the conflict was, however, blunted by the fact that, without exception, the young Romantic writers looked up to Goethe as its master; they modelled their fiction on Wilhelm Meister; they regarded his lyrics as the high-water mark of German poetry; Goethe, Novalis declared, was the "Statthalter of poetry on earth. Again, in Winckelmann and seine Zeit Goethe vigorously defended the classical ideals of which Winckelmann had been the founder.
But in the end he proved himself the greatest enemy to the strict classic doctrine by the publication in of the completed first part of Faust, a work which was accepted by contemporaries as a triumph of Romantic art. Faust is a patchwork of many colours. With the aid of the vast body of Faust literature which has sprung up in recent years, and the many new documents bearing on its history above all, the so-called Urfaust, to which reference has already been made - we are able now to ascribe to their various periods the component parts of the work; it is possible to discriminate between the Sturm and Drang hero of the opening scenes and of the Gretchen tragedy - the contemporary of Gotz and Clavigo and the superimposed Faust of calmer moral and intellectual ideals - a Faust who corresponds to Hermann and Wilhelm Meister.
In its original form the poem was the dramatization of a specific and individualized story; in the years of Goethe's friendship with Schiller it was extended to embody the higher strivings of r8th-century humanism ; ultimately, as we shall see, it became, in the second part, a vast allegory of human life and activity. Thus the elements of which Faust is composed were even more difficult to blend than were those of Wilhelm Meister; but the very want of uniformity is one source of the perennial fascination of the tragedy, and has made it in a peculiar degree the national poem of the German people, the mirror which reflects the national life and poetry from the outburst of Sturm and Drang to the well-weighed and tranquil classicism of Goethe's old age.
The third and final period of Goethe's long life may be said to have begun after Schiller's death. He never again lost touch with literature as he had done in the years which preceded his friendship with Schiller; but he stood in no active or immediate connexion with the literary movement of his day.
His life moved on comparatively uneventfully. Even the Napoleonic regime ofdisturbed but little his equanimity. Goethe, the cosmopolitan Weltbierger of the 18th century, had himself no very intense feelings of patriotism, and, having seen Germany flourish as a group of small states under enlightened despotisms, he had little confidence in the dreamers of who hoped to see the glories of Barbarossa's empire revived.
Napoleon , moreover, he regarded not as the scourge of Europe, but as the defender of civilization against the barbarism of the Slays; and in the famous interview between the two men at Erfurt the poet's admiration was reciprocated by the French conqueror. Thus Goethe had no great sympathy for the war of liberation which kindled young hearts from one end of Germany to the other; and when the national enthusiasm rose to its highest pitch he buried himself in those optical and morphological studies, which, with increasing years, occupied more and more of his time and interest.
The works and events of the last twenty-five years of Goethe's life may be briefly summarized. In , as we have seen, he suffered an irreparable loss in the death of Schiller; in , Christiane became his legal wife, and to the same year belongs the magnificent tribute to his dead friend, the Epilog zu Schillers Glocke. Two new friendships about this time kindled in the poet something of the juvenile fire and passion of younger days. Bettina von Arnim came into personal touch with Goethe in , and her Briefwechsel Goethes mit einem Kinde published in is, in its mingling of truth and fiction, one of the most delightful products of the Romantic mind; but the episode was of less importance for Goethe's life than Bettina would have us believe.
On the other hand, his interest in Minna Herzlieb, foster-daughter of the publisher Frommann in Jena , was of a warmer nature, and has left its traces on his sonnets. In , as we have seen, appeared the first part of Faust, and in it was followed by Die Wahlverwandtschaften. The novel, hardly less than the drama, effected a change in the public attitude towards the poet.
Since the beginning of the century the conviction had been gaining ground that Goethe's mission was accomplished, that the day of his leadership was over; but here were two works which not merely re-established his ascendancy, but proved that the old poet was in sympathy with the movement of letters, and keenly alive to the change of ideas which the new century had brought in its train.
The intimate psychological study of four minds, which forms the subject of the Wahlverwandtschaften, was an essay in a new type of fiction, and pointed out the way for developments of the German novel after the stimulus of Wilhelm Meister had exhausted itself.
Less important than Die Wahlverwandtschaften was Pandora o , the final product of Goethe's classicism, and the most uncompromisingly classical and allegorical of all his works. And in , too, appeared his treatise on Farbenlehre. In the following year the first volume of his autobiography was published under the title Aus meinem Leben, Dichtung and Wahrheit. The second and third volumes of this work followed in and ; the fourth, bringing the story of his life up to the close of the Frankfort period in , after his death.
Goethe felt, even late in life, too intimately bound up with Weimar to discuss in detail his early life there, and he shrank from carrying his biography beyond the year But a number of other publications - descriptions of travel, such as the Italienische Reise , the materials for a continuation of Dichtung and Wahrheit collected in Tagand Jahreshefte - have also to be numbered among the writings which Goethe has left us as documents of his life.
Meanwhile no less valuable biographical materials were accumulating in his diaries, his voluminous correspondence and his conversations, as recorded by J. Eckermann, the chancellor Muller and F. Several periodical publications, Ober Kunst and Altertum , Zur Naturwissenschaft iiberhaupt , Zur Morphologic , bear witness to the extraordinary breadth of Goethe's interests in these years.
Art, science, literature - little escaped his ken - and that not merely in Germany: English writers, Byron, Scott and Carlyle, Italians like Manzoni, French scientists and poets, could all depend on friendly words of appreciation and encouragement from Weimar. In West-ostlicher Diwan , a collection of lyrics - matchless in form and even more concentrated in expression than those of earlier days - which were suggested by a German translation of Hafiz, Goethe had another surprise in store for his contemporaries.
And, again, it was an actual passion - that for Marianne von Willemer, whom he met in and - which rekindled in him the lyric fire. Meanwhile the years were thinning the ranks of Weimar society: Wieland, the last of Goethe's greater literary contemporaries, died in , his wife in , Charlotte von Stein in and Duke Charles Augustus in Goethe's retirement from the direction of the theatre in meant for him a break with the literary life of the day.
In a passion for a young girl, Ulrike von Levetzow, whom he met at Marienbad , inspired the fine Trilogie der Leidenschaft, and between and appeared the long-expected and long-promised continuation of Wilhelm Meister, Wilhelm Meisters Wanderjahre. The latter work, however, was a disappointment: perhaps it could not have been otherwise. Goethe had lost the thread of his romance and it was difficult for him to resume it.
Studies in German Literature, Linguistics, and Culture
Problems of the relation of the individual to society and industrial questions were to have formed the theme of the Wanderjahre; but since the French Revolution these problems had themselves entered on a new phase and demanded a method of treatment which it was not easy for the old poet to learn. Thus his intentions were only partially carried out, and the volumes were filled out by irrelevant stories, which had been written at widely different periods.
But the crowning achievement of Goethe's literary life was the completion of Faust. The poem had accompanied him from early manhood to the end and was the repository for the fullest " confession " of his life; it is the poetic epitome of his experience. The second part is, in form, far removed from the impressive realism of the Urfaust. It is a phantasmagory; a drama the actors in which are not creatures of flesh and blood, but the shadows of an unreal world of allegory.
The lover of Gretchen had, as far as poetic continuity is concerned, disappeared with the close of the first part. In the second part it is virtually a new Faust who, at the hands of a new Mephistopheles , goes out into a world that is not ours. Yet behind these unconvincing shadows of an imperial court with its financial difficulties, of the classical Walpurgisnacht, of the fantastic creation of the Homunculus, the noble Helena episode and the impressive mystery -scene of the close, where the centenarian Faust finally triumphs over the powers of evil, there lies a philosophy of life, a ripe wisdom born of experience, such as no European poet had given to the world since the Renaissance.
Faust has been well called the "divine comedy" of 18th-century humanism. The second part of Faust forms a worthy close to the life of Germany's greatest man of letters, who died in Weimar on the 22nd of March He was the last of those universal minds which have been able to compass all domains of human activity and knowledge; for he stood on the brink of an era of rapidly expanding knowledge which has made for ever impossible the universality of interest and sympathy which distinguished him.
As a poet, his fame has undergone many vicissitudes since his death, ranging from the indifference of the "Young German" school to the enthusiastic admiration of the closing decades of the 19th century - an enthusiasm to which we owe the Weimar Goethe-Gesellschaft founded in and a vast literature dealing with the poet's life and work; but the fact of his being Germany's greatest poet and the master of her classical literature has never been seriously put in question. The intrinsic value of his poetic work, regarded apart from his personality , is smaller in proportion to its bulk than is the case with many lesser German poets and with the greatest poets of other literatures.
But Goethe was a type of literary man hitherto unrepresented among the leading writers of the world's literature; he was a poet whose supreme greatness lay in his subjectivity. Only a small fraction of Goethe's work was written in an impersonal and objective spirit, and sprang from what might be called a conscious artistic impulse; by far the larger - and the better - part is the immediate reflex of his feelings and experiences. It is as a lyric poet that Goethe's supremacy is least likely to be challenged; he has given his nation, whose highest literary expression has in all ages been essentially lyric, its greatest songs.
No other German poet has succeeded in attuning feeling, sentiment and thought so perfectly to the music of words as he; none has expressed so fully that spirituality in which the quintessence of German lyrism lies. Goethe's dramas, on the other hand, have not, in the eyes of his nation, succeeded in holding their own beside Schiller's; but the reason is rather because Goethe, from what might be called a wilful obstinacy, refused to be bound by the conventions of the theatre, than because he was deficient in the cunning of the dramatist.
For, as an interpreter of human character in the drama, Goethe is without a rival among modern poets, and there is not one of his plays that does not contain a few scenes or characters which bear indisputable testimony to his mastery. Faust is Germany's most national drama, and it remains perhaps for the theatre of the future to prove itself capable of popularizing psychological masterpieces like Tasso and Iphigenie. It is as a novelist that Goethe has suffered most by the lapse of time. The Sorrows of Werther no longer moves us to tears, and even Wilhelm Meister and Die Wahlverwandtschaften require more understanding for the conditions under which they were written than do Faust or Egmont.
Goethe could fill his prose with rich wisdom, but he was only the perfect artist in verse. Little attention is nowadays paid to Goethe's work in other fields, work which he himself in some cases prized more highly than his poetry. It is only as an illustration of his many-sidedness and his manifold activity that we now turn to his work as a statesman, as a theatre-director, as a practical political economist.
His art-criticism is symptomatic of a phase of European taste which tried in vain to check the growing individualism of Romanticism. His scientific studies and discoveries awaken only an historical interest. We marvel at the obstinacy with which he, with inadequate mathematical knowledge, opposed the Newtonian theory of light and colour; and at his championship of "Neptunism," the theory of aqueous origin, as opposed to "Vulcanism," that of igneous origin of the earth's crust.
Of far-reaching importance was, on the other hand, his foreshadowing of the Darwinian theory in his works on the metamorphosis of plants and on animal morphology. Indeed, the deduction to be drawn from Goethe's contributions to botany and anatomy is that he, as no other of his contemporaries, possessed that type of scientific mind which, in the 19th century, has made for progress; he was Darwin's predecessor by virtue of his enunciation of what has now become one of the commonplaces of natural science - organic evolution.
Modern, too, was the outlook of the aging poet on the changing social conditions of theage, wonderfully sympathetic his attitude towards modern industry, which steam was just beginning to establish on a new basis, and towards modern democracy. The Europe of his later years was very different from the idyllic and enlightened autocracy of the 18th century, in which he had spent his best years and to which he had devoted his energies; yet Goethe was at home in it.
From the philosophic movement, in which Schiller and the Romanticists were so deeply involved, Goethe stood apart. Comparatively early in life he had found in Spinoza the philosopher who responded to his needs; Spinoza taught him to see in nature the "living garment of God," and more he did not seek or need to know. As a convinced realist he took his standpoint on nature and experience, and could afford to look on objectively at the controversies of the metaphysicians.
Kant he by no means ignored, and under Schiller's guidance he learned much from him; but of the younger thinkers, only Schelling, whose mystic nature-philosophy was a development of Spinoza's ideas, touched a sympathetic chord in his nature. As a moralist and a guide to the conduct of life - an aspect of Goethe's work which Carlyle, viewing him through the coloured glasses of Fichtean idealism , emphasized and interpreted not always justly - Goethe was a powerful force on German life in years of political and intellectual depression.
It is difficult even still to get beyond the maxims of practical wisdom he scattered so liberally through his writings, the lessons to be learned from Meister and Faust, or even that calm, optimistic fatalism which never deserted Goethe, and was so completely justified by the tenor of his life. If the philosophy of Spinoza provided the poet with a religion which made individual creeds and dogmas unnecessary and impossible, so Leibnitz's doctrine of predestinism supplied the foundations for his faith in the divine mission of human life.
This many-sided activity is a tribute to the greatness of Goethe's mind and personality; we may regard him merely as the embodiment of his particular age, or as a poet "for all time"; but with one opinion all who have felt the power of Goethe's genius are in agreement - the opinion which was condensed in Napoleon's often cited words, uttered after the meeting at Erfurt: Voila un hommel Of all modern men, Goethe is the most universal type of genius.
It is the full, rich humanity of his life and personality - not the art behind which the artist disappears, or the definite pronouncements of the thinker or the teacher - that constitutes his claim to a place in the front rank of men of letters. His life was his greatest work. The following authorized editions of Goethe's writings appeared in the poet's lifetime: Schriften 8 vols. Goethe's Nachgelassene Werke appeared as a continuation of this edition in 15 volumes Stuttgart, , to which five volumes were added in These were followed by several editions of Goethe's Sdmtliche Werke, mostly in forty volumes, published by Cotta of Stuttgart.
The first critical edition with notes was published by Hempel, Berlin, in thirty-six volumes, ; that in Kiirschner's Deutsche Nationalliteratur, vols. In the monumental Weimar edition, which is now approaching completion, began to appear; it is divided into four sections: I. Werke c. Naturwissenschaftliche Werke 12 vols. Tagebiicher 13 vols. Briefe c. Heinemann 30 vols. Geiger 44 vols. There are also innumerable editions of selected works; reference need only be made here to the useful collection of the early writings and letters published by S.
Hirzel with an introduction by M. Bernays, Der junge Goethe 3 vols. A French translation of Goethe's Ouvres completes, by J. Porchat, appeared in 9 vols. There is, as yet, no uniform English edition, but Goethe's chief works have all been frequently translated and a number of them will be found in Bohn's standard library. Collections of selected letters based on the Weimar edition have been published by E. Stein 8 vols. Of the many separate collections of Goethe's correspondence mention may be made of the Briefwechsel zwischen Schiller and Goethe, edited by Goethe himself ; 4th ed.
English translation by L. Schmitz, ; Briefwechsel zwischen Goethe and Zelter 6 vols. Scholl ; 3rd ed. Wahle, ; Briefwechsel zwischen Goethe and K. Schiiddekopf and O. Walzel 2 vols. Sauer 2 vols. Bell The chief collections of Goethe's conversations are: J. Eckermann, Gesprdche mit Goethe ; vol. Diintzer, ; also new edition by L. Geiger, ; English translation by J. Oxenford, The complete conversations with Soret have been published in German translation by C.
Burkhardt ; Goethes Unterhaltungen mit dem Kanzler F. Goethe's collected Gesprdche were published by W. Goethe's autobiography, Aus meinem Leben: Dichtung and Wahrheit, appeared in three parts between and , a fourth part, bringing the history of his life as far as his departure for Weimar in , in English translation by J. The following are the more important biographies: H. Doring, Goethes Leben ; subsequent editions, , , ; H. Viehoff, Goethes Leben 4 vols. Schafer, Goethes Leben 2 vols. Lewes , The Life and Works of Goethe 2 vols. Frese is in its 18th edition, ; a shorter biography was published by Lewes in under the title The Story of Goethe's Life ; W.
Mezieres , W. Goethe, les oeuvres expliquees par la vie ; A. Bossert, Goethe ; K.
Torquato Tasso (Goethe)
Goedeke, Goethes Leben and Schriften ; 2nd ed. Grimm, Goethe: Vorlesungen ; 8th ed. Hayward, Goethe ; H. Diintzer, Goethes Leben ; 2nd ed. Baumgartner, Goethe, sein Leben and seine Werke ; J. Sime, Life of Goethe ; K. Heinemann, Goethes Leben and Werke ; 3rd ed. Meyer, Goethe ; 3rd ed.
Bielschowsky, Goethe, sein Leben and seine Werke vol. Cooper, ff. Witkowsky, Goethe ; H. Atkins, J. Goethe ; P. Hansen and R. Meyer, Goethe, hans Liv og Vaerker Of writings on special periods and aspects of Goethe's life the more important are as follows the titles are arranged as far as possible in the chronological sequence of the poet's life : H. Diintzer, Goethes Stammbaum ; K. Heinemann, Goethes Mutter ; 6th ed. Ewart, Goethes Vater ; G.
Witkowski, Cornelia die Schwester Goethes ; P. Besson, Goethe, sa sceur et ses amies ; H. Diintzer, Frauenbilder aus Goethes Jugendzeit ; W. Lucius , Friederike Brion ; 3rd ed. Bielschowsky, Friederike Brion ; F. Herbst, Goethe in Wetzlar ; A. Diezmann, Goethe and die lustige Zeit in Weimar ; 2nd ed.
Diintzer, Goethe and Karl August ; 2nd ed. Freundeskreise and Charlotte von Stein 2 vols. Harnack, Zur Nachgeschichte der italienischen Reise ; H. Grimm, Schiller and Goethe Essays, ; 3rd ed. Voss ; E. Pasquh, Goethes Theaterleitung in Weimar 2 vols. Harnack, Goethe in der Epoche seiner Vollendung 2nd ed.
Steig, Goethe and die Gebruder Grimm Graef, Goethe g iber seine Dichtungen ff. Braun, Goethe im Urteile seiner Zeitgenossen 3 vols. Carlyle, Essays on Goethe ; X.
Marmier, Etudes sur Goethe ; W. Minor and A. Sauer, Studien zur Goethe-Philologie ; H. Hehn, Gedanken g iber Goethe ; 4th ed. Scherer, Aufsdtze g iber Goethe ; J. Seeley, Goethe reviewed after Sixty, Years ; E. Dowden, New Studies in Literature ; E. Rod , Essai sur Goethe ; A. Luther, Goethe, sechs Vortrdge ; R. Saitschik, Goethes Charakter ; W. Bode, Goethes Lebenskunst ; 2nd ed. Vollbehr, Goethe and die bildende Kunst ; E. Lichtenberger, Etudes sur les poesies lyriques de Goethe ; T.
Achelis, Grundzuge der Lyrik Goethes ; B. Litzmann, Goethes Lyrik ; R. Riemann, Goethes Romantechnik ; R. Virchow, Goethe als Naturforscher ; E. Caro, La Philosophic de Goethe ; 2nd ed. Steiner, Goethes Weltanschauung ; F. Siebeck, Goethe als Denker ; F. Baldensperger, Goethe en France ; S. Waetzoldt, Goethe and die Romantik More special treatises dealing with individual works are the following: W.
Scherer, Aus Goethes Fruhzeit ; R. Weissenfels , Goethe in Sturm and Drang, vol. Appell, Werther and seine Zeit ; 4th ed. Schmidt, Richardson, Rousseau and Goethe ; M. Herrmann, Das Jahrmarktsfest zu Plundersweilen ; E. Schmidt, Goethes Faust in ursprunglicher Gestalt ; 5th ed.
Goethe’s Werther and the Critics: Of Related Interest
Collin, Goethes Faust in seiner dltesten Gestalt ; H. Fischer, Goethes Iphigenie ; F. Schuchardt, Goethes italienische Reise ; H. Diintzer, Iphigenie auf Tauris; die drei dltesten Bearbeitungen ; F. Kern, Goethes Tasso ; J. Boas, Schiller and Goethe in Xenienkampf ; E. Schmidt and B. Suphan, Xenien , nach den Handschriften ; W. Fries, Quellen and Komposition der Achilleis ; K. Jung, Goethes Wanderjahre and die wichtigsten Fragen des Jahrhunderts ; F. Schroer 2 vols. Fischer, Goethes Faust 3 vols. Minor, Goethes Faust, Entstehungsgeschichte and Erklarung 2 vols.
Hirzel, Verzeichnis einer Goethe-Bibliothek , to which G. Also K. Hoyer, Zur Einf g ihrung in die Goethe-Literatur On Goethe in England see E.
Oswald , Goethe in England and America 2nd ed. Reference may also be made here to F. Zarncke's Verzeichnis der Originalaufnahmen von Goethes Bildnissen A Goethe-Gesellschaft was founded at Weimar in , and numbers over members; its publications include the annual GoetheJahrbuch since , and a series of Goethe-Schriften. A GoetheVerein has existed in Vienna since , and an English Goethe society, which has also issued several volumes of publications, since Goethe's Descendants.
The marriage was a very unhappy one, the husband having no qualities that could appeal to a woman who, whatever the censorious might say of her moral character, was distinguished to the last by a lively intellect and a singular charm. Of Walther von Goethe little need be said. In youth he had musical ambitions, studied under Mendelssohn and Weinlig at Leipzig, under Loewe at Stettin , and afterwards at Vienna.
He published a few songs of no great merit, and had at his death no more than the reputation among his friends of a kindly and accomplished man. Wolfgang or, as he was familiarly called, Wolf von Goethe, was by far the more gifted of the two brothers, and his gloomy destiny by so much the more tragic.
A sensitive and highly imaginative boy, he was the favourite of his grandfather, who made him his constant companion. This fact, instead of being to the boy's advantage, was to prove his bane. The exalted atmosphere of the great man's ideas was too rarefied for the child's intellectual health, and a brain well fitted to do excellent work in the world was ruined by the effort to live up to an impossible ideal. To maintain himself on the same height as his grandfather, and to make the name of Goethe illustrious in his descendants also, became Wolfgang's ambition; and his incapacity to realize this, very soon borne in upon him, paralyzed his efforts and plunged him at last into bitter revolt against his fate and gloomy isolation from a world that seemed to have no use for him but as a curiosity.
From the first, too, he was hampered by wretched health; at the age of sixteen he was subjected to one of those terrible attacks of neuralgia which were to torment him to the last; physically and mentally alike he stood in tragic contrast with his grandfather, in whose gigantic personality the vigour of his race seems to have been exhausted.
From to Wolfgang studied law at Bonn , Jena, Heidelberg and Berlin, taking his degree of doctor juris at Heidelberg in During this period he had made his first literary efforts. His Studenten-Briefe Jena, , a medley of letters and lyrics, are wholly conventional. In this last, as in his other poetic attempts, Wolfgang showed a considerable measure of inherited or acquired ability, in his wealth of language and his easy mastery of the difficulties of rhythm and rhyme.
But this was all. The work was characteristic of his self-centred isolation: ultra-romantic at a time when Romanticism was already an outworn fashion, remote alike from the spirit of the age and from that of Goethe. The cold reception it met with shattered at a blow the dream of Wolfgang's life; henceforth he realized that to the world he was interesting mainly as "Goethe's grandson," that anything he might achieve would be measured by that terrible standard, and he hated the legacy of his name.
The next five years he spent in Italy and at Vienna, tormented by facial neuralgia. The fruit of his long years of illness was a slender volume of lyrics, Gedichte Stuttgart and Tubingen, , good in form, but seldom inspired, and showing occasionally the influence of a morbid sensuality. In he was appointed secretary of legation ; but the aggressive ultramontanism of the Curia became increasingly intolerable to his overwrought nature, and in he was transferred, at his own request, as secretary of legation to Dresden.
This post he resigned in , in which year he was raised to the rank of Freiherr baron. In he received the title of councillor of legation; but he never again occupied any diplomatic post. The rest of his life he devoted to historical research, ultimately selecting as his special subject the Italian libraries up to the year o. The outcome of all his labours was, however, only the first part of Studies and Researches in the Times and Life of Cardinal Bessarion, embracing the period of the council of Florence privately printed at Jena, , a catalogue of the MSS.
In Ottilie von Goethe, who had resided mainly at Vienna, returned to Weimar and took up her residence with her two sons in the Goethehaus. So long as she lived, her small salon in the attic storey of the great house was a centre of attraction for many of the most illustrious personages in Europe. But after her death in the two brothers lived in almost complete isolation. The few old friends, including the grand-duke Charles Alexander, who continued regularly to visit the house, were entertained with kindly hospitality by Baron Walther; Wolfgang refused to be drawn from his isolation even by the advent of royalty.
Goethe's grandsons have been so repeatedly accused of having dis p layed a dog -in-the-manger temper in closing the Goethehaus to the public and the Goethe archives to research, that the charge has almost universally come to be regarded as proven. It is true that the house was closed and access to the archives only very sparingly allowed until Baron Walther's death in But the reason for this was not, as Herr Max Hecker rather absurdly suggests, Wolfgang's jealousy of his grandfather's oppressive fame, but one far more simple and natural.
From one cause or another, principally Ottilie von Goethe's extravagance, the family was in very straitened circumstances; and the brothers, being thoroughly unbusinesslike, believed themselves to be poorer than they really were. In any case, the accusation is ungenerous. With an almost exaggerated Pieteit Goethe's descendants preserved his house untouched, at great inconvenience to themselves, and left it, with all its treasures intact, to the nation.
Had they been the selfish misers they are sometimes painted, they could have realized a fortune by selling its contents. Wolf Goethe Weimar, is a sympathetic appreciation by Otto Mejer, formerly president of the Lutheran consistory in Hanover. See also Jenny v. Hecker in Allgem. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe August 28, — March 22, was a German writer, poet , novelist , and playwright. He also worked as an actor , administrator , scientist , geologist , botanist and philosopher.
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He influenced many 19th century writers and thinkers. His contributions to science include his work in botany and his Theory of Colours. Famous lines from his books are often quoted, and some of his phrases have become part of the German language. Critics and scholars say his poems are only good in German, because that is the language he wrote them in. His plays are not often performed outside Germany, and most of his scientific work now seems old-fashioned.
Goethe was born in Frankfurt am Main , Germany. His father was well-educated and very strict. His mother was only eighteen when he was born. When Goethe was a young boy, he began to write stories and plays for his friends. In his youth, he learned Greek , Latin and French. He studied law in Leipzig from to He also wrote some letters that are seen as beautiful, and that showed his promise as a writer. He continued his studies in Strasbourg from to He joined other young men who wanted to change the way that Germans were writing.
He thought that people like Johann Christoph Gottsched were too strict about writing poetry. Instead of the ideas of the Enlightenment , he wanted poets to be creative and make their own rules. One man who had many new ideas was a poet named Johann Gottfried von Herder. Herder liked the plays of Shakespeare which he had learned in German as well as folk poetry. These ideas were exciting for Goethe, and he helped Herder to collect folk poetry. Goethe fell in love with several women during his lifetime.
During the early period of his life, he was in love with a girl named Friederike Brion, the daughter of a pastor. Several of his poems are inspired by her. He felt extremely sad when they split up. They are all based on his own experience. His disappointment in love inspired him when writing about Werther in Die Leiden des jungen Werthers and Gretchen in his great play Faust. His poems also show his ideas about science and philosophy. Werther is a young man who falls passionately in love with a girl called Lotte who is married to someone else.
Werther kills himself in the end. The book was very successful all over Europe. He spent most of his life working at it. He was writing the first version of Faust at this time. Based on a legendary character, it tells of a man called Faust who is tired of studying and wants to have the greatest possible happiness.
The devil called Mephistopheles in the play tells Faust he can help him to do this, but that in the end Faust must give him his soul and go with him to hell. Faust uses magic in the hope that it will tell him everything about life. Along with writing, Goethe was developing a career in law. In , he spent four months in Wetzlar at the Imperial Law Courts. Here he made new friends, including a young girl who was already engaged to someone else. Goethe had been well-educated and was good at organizing and getting on with important people.
For eleven years he worked at the court of Weimar for a young Duke called Karl August. He had to organize road-building projects, and look after parks and buildings. He studied geology , mineralogy , botany and anatomy. He fell in love with a woman called Charlotte von Stein who was married and had several children. He wrote love letters to her, and she inspired him to write many poems. The heroes of his books at this time were often ordinary people instead of geniuses. After a time he realized that all his work on governmental duties were not giving him time for his writing, so he went to Italy for 18 months.
He loved the landscape and made lots of sketches , and he read the ancient poets and books on the history of art. He wrote a play in rhyme called Iphigenie auf Tauris which combines the beauty of Classicism with great poetry. When he returned from Italy he settled once more in Weimar. He visited Italy a second time. He became great friends with the famous poet and playwright Friedrich Schiller.
The two men talked about many of their ideas and helped one another by offering criticism of their works. He wrote short works such as Hermann und Dorothea which is about life in a small German town at the time of the French Revolution. Two works of the greatest importance works occupied him at this time. One is the novel Wilhelm Meisters Lehrjahre. It means a novel which shows a person growing up and developing his character and learning about the world. This book was a very important influence on the 19th century Romantic novel and on all German autobiographical novels ever since.
Goethe spent many years working on this book. The second work of enormous importance was his play Faust. He made changes to the original version, putting all the small bits together into one great play. Schiller gave him advice while he was writing it. Faust enters into a pact with the devil, Mephistopheles who promises him all his soul can wish for: fine living, gold , women and honour. He signs the pact with his blood. Napoleon was fighting wars all over Europe at this time. Germany, which was still made up of lots of small countries, was an enemy of France.
Goethe always thought of Napoleon as a hero. His ideas about politics were still based on 18th century ideas. He hated war and so he did not take part in politics but concentrated on science and literature. He wrote a book called Die Wahlverwandtschaften Elective Affinities which is about a divorce problem. Some of his scientific ideas are used in the story as he talks about the way that two chemical compounds can break up and form new unions.
He compares this to the people in his story. He uses ideas from Persia and other Eastern countries together with ideas from the West. It has a lot of parables about human life. Many interesting things that Goethe said were written down in a book by his friend Eckermann, who published them in a book called Conversations with Goethe.
Goethe also wrote about his own life in his autobiography which he called Dichtung und Wahrheit Poetry and Truth. The book tells us about his youth up to the time of his arrival in Weimar. It is in four parts. The fourth part was published after his death. He chose the title to show that he was telling us the truth about his life, but that he had changed the order of some events to make it into a poetic book. It consists of several sections which are like separate stories. At the end of his life he finished a second part of Faust. It is quite hard to read, and is more of a long poem than a dramatic play.
It talks of his ideas about allegory , science and philosophy. Goethe died in Weimar on March 22, He had started as a great Classical writer of the 18th century and finished as a young Romantic of the 19th century. No one else had such a big influence on art and literature of that time.
Here are sentences from other pages on Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, which are similar to those in the above article. The Full Wiki Search:. Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe: Wikis. Related top topics Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. Friedrich Schiller. Redirected to Johann Wolfgang von Goethe article. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia "Goethe" redirects here. For other uses, see Goethe disambiguation. Goethe was one of the key figures of German literature and the movement of Weimar Classicism in the late 18th and early 19th centuries; this movement coincides with Enlightenment , Sentimentality Empfindsamkeit , Sturm und Drang and Romanticism.
Goethe is the originator of the concept of Weltliteratur " world literature " , having taken great interest in the literatures of England , France , Italy , classical Greece , Persia , the Arab world , and others. Goethe's influence spread across Europe, and for the next century his works were a major source of inspiration in music , drama , poetry and philosophy.
Goethe is considered by many to be the most important writer in the German language and one of the most important thinkers in Western culture as well. Johann Caspar and private tutors gave Goethe lessons in all the common subjects of that time, especially languages Latin , Greek, French and English. Goethe studied law in Leipzig from to
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