The Great Duumvirate
Nun kann ich aber hoffen, dasz wir, so viel von dem Wege noch übrig sein mag, in Gemeinschaft durchwandeln werden, und mit um so gröszerem Gewinn, da die letzten Gefährten auf einer langen Reise sich immer am meisten zu sagen haben.
Letter of 1794.
THE coupled names of Goethe and Schiller denote a literary epoch as well as a peculiarly inspiring personal friendship. What a vista opens before the mind's eye when one thinks of all the influence that went out from them into the wide world during the nineteenth century! The visitor to Weimar who goes to look at Rietschel's famous statue in front of the theater has a sensation like that of standing at the source of a mighty river. Of course the men and their time have been greatly idealized; like the sculptor, the imagination of posterity has lifted them above the level of the earth, joined their hands and given them the pose of far- seeing literary heroes. We think of each as increased by the whole strength of the other. As Herman Grimm puts it algebraically, the formula is not G + S, but G(+ S) + S(+ G).1
And all this hits an essential truth, albeit the student of the documents--the letters and journals of the____________________