Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (German pronunciation: [ˈjoːhan ˈvɔlfɡaŋ fɔn ˈɡøːtə] ( listen), 28 August 1749 – 22 March 1832) was a German writer, artist, and politician. His body of work includes epic and lyric poetry written in a variety of metres and styles, prose and verse dramas, memoirs, an autobiography, literary and aesthetic criticism, treatises on botany, anatomy, and colour, and four novels. In addition, numerous literary and scientific fragments, and over ten thousand letters written by him are extant, as are nearly three thousand drawings which he did in artistic mediums ranging from ink wash to charcoal. A literary celebrity by the age of 25, Goethe was ennobled by The Duke of Saxe-Weimar, Carl August in 1782 after first taking up residence there in November of 1775 following the success of his first novel, The Sorrows of Young Werther. During his first ten years in Weimar Goethe served as 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.


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