Johann Wolfgang von
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"More Light!" - his last words
Goethe, Johann Wolfgang von
Goethe (gœ´te), Johann
German writer and scientist. A master of poetry, drama, and the novel, he spent 50 years on his two-part dramatic poem Faust (published 1808 and 1832). He also conducted scientific research in various fields, notably botany, and held several governmental positions.
- Goe´thean (-têen) adjective
Goethe, Johann Wolfgang von
Goethe, Johann Wolfgang von (1749-1832), German poet, dramatist, novelist, and scientist. Goethe was born in Frankfurt am Main. His poetry expresses a modern view of humanity's relationship to nature, history, and society; his plays and novels reflect a profound understanding of human individuality.
From 1770 to 1771 Goethe lived in Strasbourg, where he studied law, music, art, anatomy, and chemistry. In Strasbourg Goethe formed two friendships important for his literary life. One was with Friederike Brion, the daughter of a pastor; Goethe later used her as the model for feminine characters in several of his works. The other friendship was with philosopher and critic Johann Gottfried von Herder, who taught Goethe to appreciate the value of German folk poetry and German Gothic architecture as sources of inspiration for German literature.
Goethe received his law degree and returned to Frankfurt, where he wrote the tragedy Götz von Berlichingen (1773). The play inaugurated the important German literary movement known as Sturm und Drang (Storm and Stress), the forerunner of the German romantic movement. The following year, as the result of an unhappy love affair, Goethe wrote the romantic and tragic tale The Sorrows of Young Werther (1774). This work was the earliest important novel of modern German literature and became the model for numerous tales of passionate subjectivity.
Goethe in Weimar and Italy
In 1775 Charles Augustus, heir apparent to the duchy of Saxe-Weimar, invited Goethe to live and work in Weimar, one of the intellectual and literary centers of Germany. Goethe wrote little during the first ten years at Weimar. He began the composition of some of his best-known works, including the prose drama Iphigenia in Tauris (1787) and the character dramas Egmont and Faust. In 1786 Goethe went to Rome. He studied the art, architecture, and literature of ancient Greece and Rome and those Renaissance works that had been most strongly influenced by the ancients. During this time Goethe completed the dramas Egmont (1788) and Torquato Tasso (1790). These works brought into German literature the discipline of ideas and form that initiated the so-called classical period.
Return to Weimar
Goethe returned to Weimar in 1788. His new literary principles were not well received, and he antagonized court circles by living with a young girl, Christiane Vulpius, who in 1789 bore him a son. Goethe became reabsorbed in scientific studies, however, and in 1790 he wrote Essay on the Metamorphosis of Plants, which further developed his ideas on comparative morphology. Goethe's interest in literature was revived through his friendship with Friedrich von Schiller, a German dramatist and, after Goethe, the foremost figure of the German classical period. Schiller's criticism and suggestions stimulated Goethe to new creative endeavors. Goethe's novel Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship (1796) became a model for subsequent German fiction. Schiller also encouraged Goethe to resume work on Faust, and the first part was published in 1808.
In 1806 Goethe married Christiane Vulpius. His writings between 1805 and 1832 include the novels Elective Affinities (1809) and Wilhelm Meister's Travels (1821, revised 1829); The Autobiography of Goethe (1811-1833); a collection of lyrics, Westeasterly Divan (1819); and the second part of Faust (published posthumously, 1832). Faust is one of the masterpieces of German and of world literature. It is an allegory of human life. Its emphasis on the right and power of people to work out an individual destiny accounts for its universal reputation as the first great work of literature in the spirit of modern individualism.
There is nothing more odious than the majority. It consists of a few powerful men who lead the way; of accommodating rascals and submissive weaklings and a mass of men who trot after them without in the least knowing their own minds. -- Goethe
The 18th Century German poet Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, author of _Faust_, reported seeing, while traveling by coach between Frankfurt and Leipzig in 1768, a phenomenon much like some
reported modern UFO encounters. Goethe reported seeing in a ravine an "amphitheater" filled with numerous brilliant, small lights. Some of the lights were stationary, but others moved with vigor. Goethe investigated the incident and learned that a stone quarry filled with water was located in the vicinity of his sighting. The lights he described could be interpreted as reflections of sunlight off water in the quarry, but Goethe apparently considered the possibility that he had seen "will-of-the-wisps" or other glowing "creatures." This sighting resembles many modern UFO reports in that luminous, moving objects are sighted; a possible natural explanation for the sighting (in this case, reflections of sunlight on water) exists; and the observer admits the possibility of some paranormal phenomenon.
It is interesting that in the human case, color can be apprehended by the "observer" in the 7th-dimension via either the left brain (i.e. 'objectively' in terms of herz frequencies) or, alternatively, via the right brain (i.e. holistically). Cf.Gleick, "The touchstone of Newton's [LH] theory was his famous experiment with a prism. A prism breaks a beam of white light into a rainbow of colors, spread across the whole visible spectrum, and Newtonrealized that those pure colors must be the elementary components that add to produce white. Further, with a leap of insight, he proposed that the colors corresponded to frequencies ....[LH] Newton had held a prism before a light, casting the divided beam onto a white surface [but RH] Goethe held the prism to his eye and looked through it [and] perceived no color at all, neither a rainbow nor individual hues. Looking at a clear white surface or a clear blue sky through the prism produced the same effect: uniformity . But if a slight spot interrupted the white surface or a cloud appeared in the sky, then he would see a burst of color. It is 'the interchange of light and shadow,' Goethe concluded, that causes color .....How does a shadow divide the white into a region of blue and a region of reddish yellow? Color is 'a degree of darkness', Goethe argued, 'allied to shadow'. Above all, in a more modern language, color comes from boundary conditions [i.e. in the 9th-/3rd dimension complementarity, I suggest]
and singularities .[i.e. in the 7th-/1st dimension complementarity]. Where [LH] Newton was reductionist, [RH] Goethe was holistic Newton broke light apart and found the most basicphysical explanation for color. Goethe walked through flower gardens andstudied paintings, looking for a grand, all-encompassing explanation. Newton made his theory of color fit a mathematical scheme for all of physics. Goethe, fortunately or unfortunately, abhorred mathematics". Gleick further notes that " ....as Feigenbaum understood them, Goethe'sideas had more true science in them. They were hard and empirical. Over and over again, Goethe emphasized the repeatability of his experiments. It was the [RH] perception of color, to Goethe, that was universal and objective. What [LH] scientific evidence was there for a definable real-world quality of redness independent of our [RH] perception?" (_Chaos_, pp. 164-65). In short, one's predisposition to apprehend colour à, la Newton or à, la Goethe is a concomitant of bimodal- psychoanalytical brain hemisphere bias.
- Barron Burrow - _A Psychophysical Theory Of Everything_
The roots of Merck KGaA reach back into the 17th century. In 1668, Friedrich Jacob Merck, an apothecary from Schweinfurt, assumed ownership of the "Engel-Apotheke" (Angel Pharmacy) in Darmstadt, which has been in the possession of the family ever since. In 1816, Emanuel Merck - grandson of the Hessian military councillor Johann Heinrich Merck, a friend of Goethe's - took over the pharmacy. (Merck was the first to patent MDMA i.e. ecstasy as a dietary drug.)
Why Did The Chicken Cross The Road?
Goethe: The eternal hen-principle made it do it.