Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

(28 August 1749 – 22 March 1832 / Frankfurt am Main)

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe Quotes

  • ''The one who acts is always without conscience; nobody has a conscience but the contemplative person.''
    Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe (1749-1832), German poet, dramatist. Art and Antiquity, V, 1 (1824).
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  • ''Which government is the best? The one that teaches us to govern ourselves.''
    Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe (1749-1832), German poet, dramatist. Art and Antiquity, V, 3 (1826).
  • ''We said that the history of mankind depicts man; in the same way one can maintain that the history of science is science itself.''
    Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe (1749-1832), German poet, dramatist. On the Theory of Color, preface (1810).
  • ''If you don't know foreign languages, you don't know anything about your own.''
    Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe (1749-1832), German poet, dramatist. Art and Antiquity, III, 1 (1821).
  • ''Where there is plenty of light there is strong shadow.''
    Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe (1749-1832), German poet, dramatist. Philine, in Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship, act I, Götz's castle (1771).
  • ''Translators can be considered as busy matchmakers who praise as extremely desirable a half-veiled beauty. They arouse an irresistible yearning for the original.''
    Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe (1749-1832), German poet, dramatist. Art and Antiquity, V, 3 (1826).
  • ''What's it to you if I love you?''
    Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe (1749-1832), German poet, dramatist. Philine, in Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship, bk. IV, ch. 9 (1795-1796).
  • ''More light!
    [Mehr Licht!]''
    Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe (1749-1832), German poet, dramatist. Attributed last words. According to Oxford Dictionary of Quotations, ed. Angela Partington (1992), Goethe's actual last words were: "Open the second shutter, so that more light can come in."
  • ''One of the most striking signs of the decay of art is the intermixing of different genres.''
    Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe (1749-1832), German poet, dramatist. Propylaea, introduction (1798).
  • ''To be sure, a good work of art can and will have moral consequences, but to demand of the artists moral intentions, means ruining their craft.''
    Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe (1749-1832), German poet, dramatist. Autobiography. Poetry and Truth, part III, bk. 12 (1814).

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Best Poem of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

The Erl-King

1.
WHO rides there so late through the night dark and drear?
The father it is, with his infant so dear;
He holdeth the boy tightly clasp'd in his arm,
He holdeth him safely, he keepeth him warm.

"My son, wherefore seek'st thou thy face thus to hide?"
"Look, father, the Erl-King is close by our side!
Dost see not the Erl-King, with crown and with train?"
"My son, 'tis the mist rising over the plain."

"Oh, come, thou dear infant! oh come thou with me!
Full many a game I will play there with thee;
On my strand, lovely flowers their blossoms unfold,
My ...

Read the full of The Erl-King

To Belinda

WHEREFORE drag me to yon glittering eddy,

With resistless might?
Was I, then, not truly blest already

In the silent night?

In my secret chamber refuge taking,

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