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Translated by R.D. Boylan Edited by Nathen Haskell Dole - page 78 / 106





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The Sorrows ofYoung Werther

and pain, of pleasure and reward; but what does it all avail? I am happy only where thou art, and in thy presence am I con- tent to suffer or enjoy.” And wouldst thou, heavenly Father,

dies, with such intense expression! Her little sister was dress- ing her doll upon my lap. The tears came into my eyes. I leaned down, and looked intently at her wedding-ring: my

banish such a child from thy presence?


tears fell —immediately she began to play that favourite, that divine, air which has so often enchanted me. I felt comfort from a recollection of the past, of those bygone days when that

WILHELM, the man about whom I wrote to you —that man so enviable in his misfortunes —was secretary to Charlotte’s father; and an unhappy passion for her which he cherished, concealed, and at length discovered, caused him to be dis- missed from his situation. This made him mad. Think, whilst you peruse this plain narration, what an impression the cir- cumstance has made upon me! But it was related to me by Albert with as much calmness as you will probably peruse it.

air was familiar to me; and then I recalled all the sorrows and the disappointments which I had since endured. I paced with hasty strides through the room, my heart became convulsed with painful emotions. At length I went up to her, and ex-

claimed With eagerness, “For Heaven’s sake, play that air no longer!” She stopped, and looked steadfastly at me. She then said, with a smile which sunk deep into my heart, “Werther, you are ill: your dearest food is distasteful to you. But go, I entreat you, and endeavour to compose yourself.” I tore myself away. God, thou seest my torments, and wilt end them!



I IMPLORE your attention. It is all over with me. I can support this state no longer. To-day I was sitting by Charlotte. She was playing upon her piano a succession of delightful melo-

HOW HER IMAGE haunts me! Waking or asleep, she fills my entire soul! Soon as I close my eyes, here, in my brain, where


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