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Werther de Goethe / End of Time.

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  • Werther de Goethe / End of Time.

    From where does the name Werther de Goethe originate?

  • #2
    I think the name appears a few miilion times on an obscure web site called Google. You might start there !

    Hint: leave out the "de" if your first language is English.

    :D

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    • #3
      Indeed, Werther even owns a large building in Manchester city centre,
      The "Goethe Institue", where on dark stormy nights he can be seen on the roof, shaking his fist at the uncaring sky and bemoaning his dark and terrible doom.

      'Course, its not as dark and terrible as mine
      \"It got worse. He needed something to cure himself. What? he asked. M-A 19 he answered.\"

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      • #4
        Originally posted by M-A_19
        Indeed, Werther even owns a large building in Manchester city centre, The "Goethe Institute", where on dark stormy nights he can be seen on the roof, shaking his fist at the uncaring sky and bemoaning his dark and terrible doom.

        'Course, its not as dark and terrible as mine
        I have not in a long time read such a brilliant short answer that knockeed me off my chair to roll on the floor laughing, M-A_19! Thanks,
        Google ergo sum

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        • #5
          Plus of course he advertises those toffees on TV

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          • #6
            You rotters! :lol:

            Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749–1832) wrote exceedingly good books, poems and plays, experimented with science and dabbled in alchemy.

            He wrote a book, The Sufferings of Young Werther (1774), about a very, very sensitive young man, who loves and loses and spends most of the book bemoaning his fate and contemplating suicide, which he eventually commits. The book caused a sensation in its time.

            Very suitable for sensitive Goth types. But, it's all a bit, "Hullo trees! Hullo sky!" Fotherington-Thomas, who sum of you should kno!

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            • #7
              Die Leiden des jungen Werther is okay, but it's a bit, ah, emotionally overwrought to the point of being neurasthenic. It's a very important document in the literary history of Romantic literature, and this *is* Goethe we're talking about, so even a work of his "immaturity" is worth reading.

              I've always liked Wilhelm Meisters Lehrjahre better. It's certainly more poised. (I suppose that's the right word.)

              There's a novel by him called in English Elective Affinities, whose name in German I cannot remember just now. It's well-known, but I don't feel competent to comment, since it doesn't appeal to me personally.

              In addition to his famous book-length play Faust, he wrote other important drama. I've always been partial to Egmont and Iphigenie auf Tauris, but some of the other plays, with more "storm and stress" (e.g., Torquato Tasso and Goetz...) are entertaining.

              His autobiography, Dichtung und Wahrheit, as well as Eckermann's "Conversations ..." make very interesting reading, but I found them more pleasant to dip into than to read at one go.

              One of the best glosses on Goethe's career and life that I've ever read is Thomas Mann's novel, Lotte in Weimar.

              LSN

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              • #8
                Thanks for stepping in, colleagues. That was getting shockingly flippant.

                My (limited) understanding (I'm a science graduate, for my sins) is that The Sorrows (or Sufferings) Of Young Werther was so influential at the time that it caused a spate of suicides among young men.

                These tales may become exaggerated, of course.

                The Dancers at the End of Time series, for example, has become well known in certain circles for causing a spate of barely controlled chuckling.

                Poor Werther; reduced (even before The End of Time itself) to something of a joke (albeit a fairly sophisticated one). But that was the 70s, and all art tended to the condition of irony.

                Anyone know if Werther was parodied at the time it was written?

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by GuyLawley
                  Thanks for stepping in, colleagues. That was getting shockingly flippant.
                  Yes. It was pretty good (except maybe for the person who asked).

                  Originally posted by GuyLawley

                  My (limited) understanding (I'm a science graduate, for my sins)
                  Were mes fautes the reason I did mathematics and physics through graduate school?

                  Could be. :lol:

                  Originally posted by GuyLawley
                  is that The Sorrows (or Sufferings) Of Young Werther was so influential at the time that it caused a spate of suicides among young men.

                  These tales may become exaggerated, of course.
                  Yes, exaggerated. I doubt those acts occurred with any greater frequency than usual, but the way I read the history of the period, it became fashionable to attitudinise in the fashion of Werther, both in fiction and in real life. So it became the thing, as it were, to make a dramatic, Romantic statement in Wertherian style, when doing away with oneself, or when just threatening to do so in an attempt to blackmail others emotionally.

                  There's a bit of Werther in Heinrich von Kleist, for example. (See his letters.) This is, I think, why Goethe had a bit of antipathy towards Kleist and his work. Of course, Kleist suffered from genuine, serious depressions, and eventually did the deed. Fortunately, he left us his short stories and several excellent plays.

                  Originally posted by GuyLawley
                  The Dancers at the End of Time series, for example, has become well known in certain circles for causing a spate of barely controlled chuckling.
                  Indeed.

                  As far as Werther parody, a lot of Werther imitations (e.g., in Byron) are to some degree parody, whether intentional or not.

                  LSN

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                  • #10
                    I always thought it amusing that those sweets are about as old as one of Werther's other inventions. Like the fake Olde English facades of those hotels springing up all over central London. Even the Cafe Royal has had a touch of antiquing, I noticed, last time I passed. Like one of my other favourite old hangouts, the Tate Restaurant, it's full of cigar-puffing suits who probably have no idea of the Grill Room's old clientele. Oi moi!
                    That's one of the reasons I'm planning to move to Paris. There are still a few belle epoque restaurants where actual people not on expense accounts eat. Sterling, De Filippo, Walter Jon Williams and our wives and sweethearts ate at the magnificent La Cigale in Nantes last year, rather frowned on by the Nantes Sunday-dining bourgeoisie, at least until they knew we were writers. What happened after that is another story. They are expert muggers, those old ladies, when a disputed taxi is the prix. That magnificent restaurant will be bound to turn up in a story soon! Probably the somewhat gloomy Ivy or Rules would be more suited to Werther's moods, though.

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                    • #11
                      Ah, vous avez bien mangأ© la, n 'est-ce pas?

                      About a dozen pictures of the place here:
                      http://www.vjoncheray.com/photothequ...uments/cigale/

                      And it is smoke-free I read ...!
                      Google ergo sum

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