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Johann Wolfgang von Goethe was a German Romantic poet, playwright and novelist. Aside from being a writer, he was also a polymath, biologist and statesman. Most of his works, including Faust, greatly influenced other 19th-century authors.
See the fact file below for more information on Johann Wolfgang von Goethe or alternatively, you can download our 22 page Johann Wolfgang von Goethe worksheet pack to utilise within the classroom or home environment.
Key Facts & Information
- On August 28, 1749, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe was born in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. He was the son of Johann Caspar Goethe, an imperial councillor, and Katharina Elisabeth Textor.
- As a young boy, Johann was tutored by his father and private tutors. He learned Latin, Hebrew, French, Italian and Greek. In addition, Johann also loved fencing, drawing and dancing. He devoted much time to reading the works of Homer and Friedrich Gottlieb Klopstock.
- In 1765, he attended Leipzig University to study law. After three years, he left school due to old judicial rules. He finished his law studies at the University of Strasbourg.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe’s Literary Career
- In 1770, Goethe anonymously published his first collection of poems entitled Annette. By 1771, while practicing law, he penned Götz von Berlichingen, a courtroom drama.
- Three years later, he published The Sorrow of Young Werther, which earned him huge success and international fame.
- At the age of 25, he was invited to the court of Carl August, Duke of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach, and was granted Weimar citizenship. During his later years, Goethe became the Duke’s chief advisor.
- From 1786 to 1788, he traveled to Italy where he further developed his philosophical views. He also met artists like Angelica Kauffman and Johann Heinrich. As a result, Italian Journey was written covering his first year in Italy.
- In 1793, after the failed French invasion, Goethe dedicated most of his time
- By 1808, his play, Faust, was first published and republished in 1832. It is considered to be the greatest work in German literature. Faust is a two-part tragic play tackling the main character’s psychological, political and historical issues.
Later Life, Legacy and Death
- In 1806, Goethe married his longtime mistress, Christiane Vulpius. Ten years later, he found love with another woman after the death of his wife.
- On March 22, 1832, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe died in Weimar. His was buried in the Ducal Vault at the Weimar’s Historical Cemetery.
- In addition to his literary works, Goethe also wrote about colors and plant morphology. Some of his famous scientific works include Metamorphosis of Plants (1790) and the Theory of Colours (1810). Moreover, he was known to have the largest collection of minerals in Europe.
- Among his famous literary works are Marienbad Elegy (1823), Wilhelm Meister’s Apprenticeship (1795-6), Iphigenie auf Tauris (1779), Egmont (1788), Torquato Tasso (1786-88), Elective Affinities (1809) and Aus Meinem Leben (1833), his autobiography.
- In 1880, the Goethe Monument was erected in Tiergarten, Berlin. Artist Fritz Schaper combined figures of drama, lyric poetry and science in the base of the memorial.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe Worksheets
This is a fantastic bundle which includes everything you need to know about romantic poet Johann Wolfgang von Goethe across 22 in-depth pages. These are ready-to-use Johann Wolfgang von Goethe worksheets that are perfect for teaching students about Johann Wolfgang von Goethe who was a German Romantic poet, playwright and novelist.
Complete List Of Included Worksheets
- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe Facts
- Master of German Literature
- Famous German Artists
- Goethe’s Works
- Legend of Faust
- Representative Men
- Goethe or Not
- Undying Influence
- Goethe Poetry
- Goethe Knowledge
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