Life of Friedrich Schiller

By Henry W. Nevinson | Go to book overview
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GOETHE'S intercourse with Schiller had hitherto been slight and distant. There was much both in mind and to keep them apart. After Goethe's visit to the Military Academy in Stuttgart, where Schiller was still an unknown student the latter did not see him again till 1788, when a meeting was arranged at Rudolstadt by the Lengefelds; but the result was disappointing, as is generally the way with forced friendships. The fame of the author of Werther and the high report of him in Weimar--where, as Schiller writes, he was even more beloved as a man than as a poet--had perhaps raised expectation rather too high. At all events, in the account of the interview contained in a letter to Körner, of which the following is an abstract, there is little enthusiasm and already a trace of antipathy. "His first appearance," Schiller says, "was considerably disappointing; I had heard so much of this attractive and beautiful figure. He is of middle height and stiff in bearing and gait; his face is reserved, but the eye very expressive, and one hangs with pleasure on his glance. In manner he is very earnest, but good- tempered and kindly. He is dark, and looks older


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