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The Sufferings of Young Werther

3.63  ·  Rating details ·  53,674 Ratings  ·  2,541 Reviews
Goethe's influential and important novel is here presented in a translation which flows in a modern natural style while maintaining fidelity to the original German.
Paperback, 144 pages
Published December 17th 1969 by W. W. Norton & Company (first published September 29th 1774)
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Agus I'd just had my heart broken by the time i read Werther (my senior year's literature teacher recommended this book to me). I'm still not really sure…moreI'd just had my heart broken by the time i read Werther (my senior year's literature teacher recommended this book to me). I'm still not really sure how did i survive to this book. (less)
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Community Reviews

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Hans
Apr 15, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is s dangerous book. For anyone who has suffered from that unrequited love that burns like a fever will be able to relate uncannily well with this book. Unfortunately the ending is such that it inspired many people to use it like a template for their own lives when faced with a similar situation. While finishing up this book I wondered whether Goethe was ever aware or thought about the painful actions his book inspired.

This is a fictionalized autobiography of Goethe's own experience of bei
...more
Eric
Jul 14, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Helen Ροζουλί Εωσφόρος   Vernus Portitor Arcanus Ταμετούρο   Αμούν Arnum
"Α,εσείς οι λογικοί άνθρωποι! Πάθος! Μέθη! Παραφροσύνη! Κάθεστε εκεί ήρεμοι και απαθείς, εσείς οι ενάρετοι, κατακρίνετε τον πότη, απεχθάνεστε τον τρελό, προσπερνάτε σαν τους ιερείς, και, σαν τους Φαρισαίους, ευχαριστείτε το Θεό που δεν σας έκανε όμοιους μ' εκείνους. Έχω μεθύσει πολλές φορές, τα πάθη μου ποτέ δεν απείχαν πολύ από την τρέλα και δεν μετανιώνω ούτε για το ένα ούτε για το άλλο, γιατί, στο μέτρο των δυνατοτήτων μου, έμαθα να κατανοώ ότι όλους τους ξεχωριστούς ανθρώπους, αυτούς που πρα ...more
Casey
I couldn't help but imagine young Werther as a high school, tweeting about all his troubles to the ether. So, without further ado, I present to you: The Tweets of Young Werther.



This is the kind of book that high school teachers should be making self-absorbed teenagers read. They can totally relate, both to the intense feelings of emotion and the complete conviction that no one in the world has ever felt the same way before. I couldn't relate that well, because really Werther just needs to man up
...more
Jonathan Ashleigh
Aug 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, recent
I have read most english translations of this remarkable work and, while Burton Pike's translation is the most popular currently, it leaves a lot to be desired. It is too simple and misses the high points. The best translation (in my opinion) and the one that I keep going back to is Catherine Hutter's version — The Sorrows of Young Werther and Selected Writings.

“This is another one of those creatures whom, like the pelican, I have fed with the blood of my own heart... There were special circumst
...more
فرشاد
May 28, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
مگر میشود رنج های ورتر جوان را بخوانی و از زیبایی عشق متحیر نشوی. قطعا به خود خواهی گفت : این یک مساله به غایت جدی ست.
Rowena
"I have been intoxicated more than once, my passions have never been far off insanity."

Although I have some sympathy for unrequited love, it was hard for me to understand Werther. My feelings toward him went back and forth between sympathy and frustration. At times I admired his love, at other times I found it to be very obsessive. Yes, he was sensitive and romantic, but the woman of his dreams did not lead him on in any way so I did find the way he behaved quite incomprehensible.

This was my f
...more
Parthiban Sekar
Jun 23, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Parthiban by: Sumati
I would not be mistaken if I think that many of us would have just eschewed this book by just seeing the first few words of the title. SORROW: the very word instigates a sense of a confused horror in us. Sorrow is one of the emotions which every great men cannot escape in their lives, as Dostoevsky says. Sorrow brings a state of helplessness from which the unfortunate weak ones cannot free themselves. Though the events of this story can be considered as unfortunate for our Werther but it can be ...more
Fionnuala
It’s taken me well over a year to get through the saga of Young Werther’s love for his Lotte even though it’s quite a short little book. I plead mitigating circumstances. I didn’t plan to read this novel, a work which Goethe distanced himself from in later life, but having come across a character called Goethe and another called Lotte in Christine Brooke-Rose’s Textermination last year, I went in pursuit of their real-life story and found a trail which led to a fictional version of the same stor ...more
Renée
May 28, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Shelves: favourites
Most beautiful book I've ever read. Goethe's style and prose is incredible. I'm not sure how well it translates to English, having read it in Dutch and German, but I'm sure there are many competant translators out there. Anyone who's not read this is really, really missing out as it's of an unequalled beauty.
Fernando
Sep 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
“Lo clásico es salud, lo romántico es enfermedad”, dijo Goethe una vez. Cuando el Romanticismo explotó originariamente en Alemania, lo hizo para romper la delicada armonía que imponía el movimiento del Clasicismo.
A partir de ese torbellino que se llamó “Sturm und Drang” (Tormenta e Ímpetu), los hombres ya no fueron los mismos. Y Werther fue el punto de partida del sentimiento romántico. Ser romántico, además de un modelo literario o un estilo pictórico, era una forma de vida. Se vivían las pasi
...more
Edward
Sep 28, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Sorrows of Young Werther is a beautiful and emotionally accurate depiction of romantic love: its consuming nature, and the devastation it has the potential to inflict. As a novel it is striking (especially for its time) in the way it subverts the traditional format, by connecting an epistolary structure with an overarching narrative from an unnamed "editor". The language is so wonderfully romantic and personal, one really is made to feel as Werther felt throughout his ordeal.

I especially lov
...more
Nidhi Singh
I am proud of my heart alone, it is the sole source of everything, all our strength, happiness and misery. All the knowledge I possess everyone else can acquire, but my heart is all my own.


If one doesn’t drown oneself in its indulgent water, sorrow can deepen, can humanize and connect a person to humanity. Werther realizes this idea at different levels of self-indulgence, self-destruction and emotional dissipation. He is dreamy, sensitive, emotional, vulnerable, very romantic, made for love, t
...more
Florencia
Jun 23, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: german-austrian
I read this book in high school. So, I don't remember much of it, except the crying. I loved the story, I could relate to many of his thoughts about unrequited love and its tragic consequences, and feeling like it was the end of the world because I wasn't with that special someone and, well. High school: Maths and lovesickness.

I cried quite a bit while reading this book, Bambi's-mother-shooting kind of tears. I probably wouldn't react that way now, I'd just think about how much easier it would
...more
Bee
It's definately a masterpiece of its age, but I can't count how many times throughout the book I wanted to shake Werther by the arm or better so, slap him it the face. The characters are just unbelievablly stupid. I know that the times were different, but still they should know better. And the fact that the book caused a lot of people to commit suicide doesn't help at all.
I can't believe Goethe wasted his talent on such a wortless novel.
Perry
Mar 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sturm and Drang: Self-Destruction, a Tragedy of Temperament

Mostly epistolary, this short novel thrusts the reader into the province of Young Werther's psyche by manner of his letters, which are replete with verbal ejaculations, disconnected sentences and fervid flights of fancy, as he moves from summit to summit to deepening valleys.

The three main characters are Lotte, Werther and Albert, who is Lotte's older fiance' then husband. The men are nearly diametrically opposed: the latter is older, se
...more
Clare
Jul 03, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who love beautiful things
I picked this up with some trepidation, assuming that it would be full of stolid German angst and that I would give up after a couple of pages. However, it's a perfect psychological portrait! I loved it. Werther isn't an entirely sympathetic character (he has the odd Kevin the Teenager moment) but you are entirely drawn into his world and feel the same responses as him very keenly. It's only upon finishing that you realise how Goethe has managed to completely draw you into the concerns and belie ...more
Khashayar Mohammadi
It breaks my heart to speak ill of a book written by Goethe; but when one thinks of the countless men and women who have read this book throughout the years, weeping tears of compassion for Werther and men of his elk, it no longer comes as a surprise how misogyny and domestic violence still haunts our women to this day.
Salma
Jan 02, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
رواية رومانسية كلاسيكية شاعرية حزينة من تأليف جوتة عن الشاب فارتر الذي أحب حبا مستحيلا
يقال أن كثير من الشباب تأثروا بها في ذاك الزمن و انتحروا على إثرها
يبدو لي أن شباب أيام زمان كانوا مرهفين زيادة و يحبون بكيانهم كله، السؤال هو لماذا انقرضت هذه النوعية من الشباب هذه الأيام
:/
بأية حال الرواية لا بأس بها، و أظن أنها ستعجب كثيرا أؤلئك الذين يحلقون مع الكلام الجميل الشاعري
و أحمد حسن الزيات ترجمته شعرية و جميلة، مع أنها ترجمة للمعنى و ليست دقيقة
الطبعة طبعة مصرية عتيقة مصفرة الأوراق مهترئة منزوعة الغلا
...more
David Gallagher
"The things I know, anyone can know - but my heart is mine and mine alone."

This has got to be one of my all-time favorite books. Haunting, devastating, soul-stirring, a fist to the stomach. All the tragedy of true love in a Goethe masterpiece. The descriptive majesty of the book is beyond comprehension. A truly amazing book, one that I am happy to have read in my lifetime and one I would suggest to everyone, especially those who have loved someone more than themselves.
İzel Özdemircan
Werther tek kelimeyle rahatsız. Psikolojik olarak,manik- depresif gibi ( iki uçlu duygu durum bozukluğu). Bir dünyanın en mutlu insanı:
' Bütün yüreğimle tadını çıkardığım tatlı ilkbahar sabahlarına benzer bu harika neşe bütün ruhumu sarıyor.' Sf. 21
'Acaba aldatıcı cinler burda kol mu geziyor, yoksa yüreğimdeki sıcak, göksel hayal gücü mü çevremdeki her şeyi benim için cennete çeviriyor? ' Sf.22

Bir de majör depresyon:
' Ne uğruna uyandığımı, ne uğruna uykuya yattığımı bilmiyorum. Yaşamımı bir zama
...more
Michael
Jun 07, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was surprised how much I enjoyed this, Goethe’s semi-autobiographical tale of a young man’s unrequited love that ends in his suicide. Written in 1774 when Goethe was 24, it was essentially the world’s first best seller. What drew me to it, along with favorable reviews by GR friends, is my curiosity and ignorance of Goethe as an important figure in cultural history. From reading Holmes’ “Age of Wonder” and Wulf’s “The Invention of Nature: Alexander von Humboldt's New World”, I got some apprecia ...more
Andrei Tamaş
Mar 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Numai o fire melancolică și letargică emoțional poate înțelege profund suferințele lui Werther. Nu știu dacă se mai poate vorbi -la două secole distanță- despre același concept de suferință...
K.D. Absolutely
May 26, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Hopeless Romantics
Recommended to K.D. by: 501 Must Read Books and 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die (2006, 2008, 2010)
Shelves: classics, 1001-core, 501
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
John Zelazny
Jul 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Before I was halfway through this book I had already connected with it on a deep level. I didn’t know what was going to happen in the end but I knew Goethe was telling my story and the opposite of my story at the same time. Ten years later I published my first novel, The Sorrows of Young Mike, which is a parody of this great tale. I can only be grateful to Goethe and encourage everyone to read The Sorrows of Young Werther. Also, if you liked it enough or even because you hated it — you should ch ...more
Pradnya K.
After a long time, I closed a book with tearful eyes..

************


Dear Werther,

It's been centuries since you've gone but even now we have peasants around who kill their lovers' love or youngsters who kill themselves for the sake of their love. I don't know which killing is worst, the former one kills two lives including one's own and yet suffer while the later one kills one life and numerous dreams of his loved ones. I feel both are equally wretched, to quit before you learn your lesson is never
...more
Scarlett
If love can be so strong and so powerful a feeling to induce someone to do the (presumably) impossible, who would be such a fool to doubt its compelling nature rendering passion, movement and depth to all things around us?

I would.

Werther was my beloved gloomy companion during high school, when my self-searching alter ego was profoundly affected mainly by the sentimental rhetoric skills of the Romantic movement writers, whom Werther served as a quintessencial influence. He came back to haunt me a
...more
inverted_a
Oct 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Πολλά δεινά ξεκίνησαν από την κυριαρχία του ρομαντισμού. Για τα προσωπικά δεινά, ούτε λόγος. Ίσως βέβαια οι προηγούμενοι αιώνες να ήταν τελικά η εφηβεία της Ευρώπης (αυτή είναι μία ρομαντικά αισιόδοξη άποψη).

*κάνω ένα update στα ράφια του goodreads που έχω αμελήσει καιρό. θα προσπαθήσω να μειώσω το spam στο feed (αν δουλεύει η αντίστοιχη επιλογή).
Foad
مقدمه ای بر مابعدالطبیعه ی انتحار

زندگی ما، از دید ما، نقطه ی پایانی ندارد. زندگی ما البته پایان دارد که همانا مرگ است. اما مسئله ی مهم، این است که ما هرگز لحظه ی مرگ خود را، لحظه ی نیست شدن خود را ادراک نمی کنیم. ما تا یک لحظه مانده به مرگ را ادراک می کنیم، اما نه لحظه ی مرگ را. در نتیجه، چنان که ویتگنشتاین هم می گوید، مرگ جزئی از زندگی ما نیست، مرگ هر فرد واقعه ای در زندگی خود او نیست، واقعه ای در زندگی اطرافیان و شاهدان است.

به این ترتیب بسیاری از خودکشی ها از نظر عقلانی واهی هستند. البته خودکش
...more
Huda Aweys
لا أجد قول فاصل بخصوص ما أدعاه البعض حول كون هذا الكتاب (آلام فيرتر) محرض على الإنتحار و الفكر العبثي أفضل مما أخبر به طه حسين في مقدمته لترجمة هذا الكتاب ، حين قال عن هؤلاء ممن دفعت بهم قراءة الكتاب الى مثل هذا الفعل :
و يخيّل إلي أن هؤلاءلم يوفقوا إلى القصد و لم يهتدوا سواء السبيل .. (..) .. ، فإنما أساء بعض الشبان ذوي النفوس المريضة فهمه و الإستفادة منه لأن ظروف الحياة الإجتماعية كانت من الشدة و الضيق في أوروبا بحيث تجعل نفوس كثير من الناس ضعيفة رخوة و خانعة مستسلمة لا تستطيع مقاومة و لا احتم
...more
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topics  posts  views  last activity   
Warum Emilia Galotti? 2 12 Apr 19, 2017 05:10AM  
Portugal: Melhor edição? 1 47 Feb 08, 2016 03:13AM  
Was Werther selfish? 5 132 May 12, 2015 09:41PM  
Goodreads Librari...: The Sorrows of Young Werther 3 35 Nov 17, 2014 08:43PM  
Suicide, what are your thoughts about it? 2 53 Nov 05, 2014 09:19AM  
Just Literature: The Sorrows of Young Werther 3 35 Aug 01, 2014 04:41AM  
Classics-only boo...: Can't Make It :( 1 58 Feb 20, 2013 03:01PM  
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Johann Wolfgang von Goethe was a German writer. George Eliot called him "Germany's greatest man of letters... and the last true polymath to walk the earth." Goethe's works span the fields of poetry, drama, literature, theology, humanism, and science. Goethe's magnum opus, lauded as one of the peaks of world literature, is the two-part drama Faust. Goethe's other well-known literary works include h ...more
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“The human race is a monotonous affair. Most people spend the greatest part of their time working in order to live, and what little freedom remains so fills them with fear that they seek out any and every means to be rid of it.” 725 likes
“I have so much in me, and the feeling for her absorbs it all; I have so much, and without her it all comes to nothing.” 487 likes
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