Der Erlkönig (1782)
Context: Who rides, so late, through night and wind?
It is the father with his child.
He holds the boy in the crook of his arm
He holds him safe, he keeps him warm.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe quotes
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Birthdate: 28. August 1749
Date of death: 22. March 1832
Other names: Johann Wolfgang von Goethe Zitat, Johann W. von Goethe, Goethe, Иоганн Вольфганг фон Гёте
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe 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, numerous literary and scientific fragments, more than 10,000 letters, and nearly 3,000 drawings by him have survived.
A literary celebrity by the age of 25, Goethe was ennobled by the Duke of Saxe-Weimar, Karl August, in 1782 after taking up residence in Weimar in November 1775 following the success of his first novel, The Sorrows of Young Werther . He was an early participant in the Sturm und Drang literary movement. During his first ten years in Weimar, Goethe became 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.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 shared 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 Classicism.
The German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer named Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship one of the four greatest novels ever written, while the American philosopher and essayist Ralph Waldo Emerson selected Goethe as one of six "representative men" in his work of the same name . Goethe's comments and observations form the basis of several biographical works, notably Johann Peter Eckermann's Conversations with Goethe . Wikipedia
Quotes Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Der Erlkönig (1782)
„It is the most foolish of all errors for young people of good intelligence to imagine that they will forfeit their originality if they acknowledge truth already acknowledged by others.“
Der thörigste von allen Irrthümern ist, wenn junge gute Köpfe glauben, ihre Originalität zu verlieren, indem sie das Wahre anerkennen, was von andern schon anerkannt worden.
Maxim 254, trans. Stopp
Maxims and Reflections (1833)
Das Göttliche (The Divine) (1783)
Der Zauberlehrling (The Sorcerer's Apprentice) (1797)
„Once a man's thirty, he's already old,
He is indeed as good as dead.
It's best to kill him right away.“
Act II, The Gothic Chamber
Faust, Part 2 (1832)
„Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now.“
Attributed to Goethe by popular British novelist Marie Corelli in her essay "The Spirit of Work" as published in The Queen's Christmas carol : an anthology of poems, stories, essays, drawings and music / by British authors, artists and composers in 1905 by The Daily Mail of London.
Attributed to Goethe by William Hutchinson Murray, in his book The Scottish Himalayan Expedition (1951), this has been shown to be a misattribution at "German Myth 12: The Famous 'Goethe' Quotation", Answer.com http://german.about.com/library/blgermyth12.htm and "Popular Quotes: Commitment", Goethe Society of North America http://www.goethesociety.org/pages/quotescom.html
Variant: Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now.
„Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others,
And in their pleasure takes joy, even as though 'twere his own.“
"Distichs" in The Poems of Goethe (1853) as translated in the original metres by Edgar Alfred Bowring
Context: Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others,
And in their pleasure takes joy, even as though 'twere his own.
Not in the morning alone, not only at mid-day he charmeth;
Even at setting, the sun is still the same glorious planet.
„Though you're a whole world, Rome, still, without Love,
The world isn't the world, and Rome can't be Rome.“
Roman Elegies (1789)
Context: I'm gazing at church and palace, ruin and column,
Like a serious man making sensible use of a journey,
But soon it will happen, and all will be one vast temple,
Love's temple, receiving its new initiate.
Though you're a whole world, Rome, still, without Love,
The world isn't the world, and Rome can't be Rome.
Wer Wissenschaft und Kunst besitzt, / Hat auch Religion / Wer jene beiden nicht besitzt / Der habe Religion
As quoted in Jost Lemmerich's "Science and Conscience: The Life of James Franck" (2011), p. 261.
Variant translation: "The man who science has and art, He also has religion. But he who is devoid of both, He surely needs religion." (as quoted in "Homilies of science" by Paul Carus (1892) and The Open Court, Weekly Journal, Vol. II (1887).
Wilhelm Meister's Lehrjahre (Apprenticeship) (1786–1830)
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„If I work incessantly to the last, nature owes me another form of existence when the present one collapses.“
Letter to Eckermann (4 February 1829)
„All Nine often used to come to me, I mean the Muses:
But I ignored them: my girl was in my arms.
Now I’ve left my sweetheart: and they’ve left me,
And I roll my eyes, seeking a knife or rope.
But Heaven is full of gods: You came to aid me:
Greetings, Boredom, mother of the Muse.“
Venetian Epigrams (1790)
Act IV, sc. iv
Iphigenie auf Tauris (1787)
„Let us live in as small a circle as we will, we are either debtors or creditors before we have had time to look round.“
Bk. II, Ch. 4
Elective Affinities (1809)
„He alone is great and happy who fills his own station of independence, and has neither to command nor to obey.“
So gewiß ist der allein glücklich und groß, der weder zu herrschen noch zu gehorchen braucht, um etwas zu sein!
Alternative translation: So certain is it that he alone is great and happy, who requires neither to command nor to obey, in order to secure his being of some importance in the world.
Götz von Berlichingen, Act I (1773), p. 39
Source: Goethe’s Works, vol. 3, Götz Von Berlichingen (With the Iron Hand) http://oll.libertyfund.org/index.php?option=com_staticxt&staticfile=show.php%3Ftitle=2113&layout=html#chapter_164458
Source: Beautiful thoughts from German and Spanish authors, by C. T. Ramage (1868) https://archive.org/stream/beautifulthough00unkngoog#page/n112/mode/2up