This document was originally published in The Drama: Its History, Literature and Influence on Civilization, vol. 11. ed. Alfred Bates. London: Historical Publishing Company, 1906. pp. 75-76.

After Schiller's death Goethe lost for a time his interest in literature. Within a year and a half the battle of Jena was fought, and Weimar was sacked by the French army. It was probably the insecurity of life at this time which led him to marry the mother of his son, with whom he had been living for seventeen years--or rather, should we say, the sense of insecurity led her to consent to the marriage, which she had before refused. Nothing in Goethe's life has been so misunderstood and misrepresented as his relations with Christiane Vulpius. She was always treated as a wife, and very much better than most wives, the two being united by bonds more indissoluble than those of the church. Christiane was from a much lower rank in society; but she understood Goethe's nature as no one else did.




  • Goethe (1749-1832) - A biography, plus links to purchase all of his works currently in print.

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