The fifes and drums drowned out any sad thoughts that I might have And the song of the men who were greeting the morning. All this in verses of elegiac couplets. It is a good poem, almost the only one by him that breathes genuine feeling. Above all it had combined the poetic with the real and autobiographical. Carl Schlegel had died in the symbolic year , and Neoptolemus in the elegy recalled how the political turmoil and chaos of the revolutionary years had brought ever more dead to join him in the realm of the shades.
This, at least, would be a sentiment that could appeal to the Goethe of Hermann und Dorothea. In , in its reissue in his re-named Poetische Werke. Schlegel of course would never have begun an elegy seemingly in mid-sentence, as Euphrosyne does. That was the privilege of genius. Following the Odyssey the Iliad rather less , it was also private and domestic, with characters who displayed a heart-warming sincerity and directness. As a renewal of Homer, it had an unforced epic tone, and its rhythm was unconstrained by any too punctilious adaptation of the ancient hexameter.
They did not however represent the sum of the elegiac tradition, and so Friedrich Schlegel reminded him of the thematic variety of the much less-known and imperfectly edited Greek elegy all in extracts translated by August Wilhelm. These poems were learned and replete with allusions: both Schlegels were very much at home in this world, classical philologists in effect, ever so slightly parading their knowledge. It was that philological, learned side of the Schlegel brothers that has travelled rather less well. Nevertheless it formed part of their sense of poetic continuities, their ultimately Herderian awareness of the historical rhythms and patterns of rise and fall, efflorescence and decay, that record the Alexandrian desiccations as here as well as the new risings of sap.
Goethe had an explanation. Reflecting over twenty years later, in Campagne in Frankreich , he recalled the general laxity in the writing of hexameters when, as a distraction from the Revolutionary Wars of , he first sat down to retell the story of Reynard the Fox in classical verse, as Reineke Fuchs. It is also certain that they disagreed on the extent to which metre may have priority over sense. Goethe where possible allowed himself to be guided by the natural rhythm of the language rather than its purely metrical patterns. He himself saw none of these activities in isolation.
He never put himself into compartments. All areas of endeavour had their place but were also interdependent: philology and antiquarian scholarship, the creative use of language in translation, art appreciation, the writing of poetry yes, even this. They could be expressed as a philosophical principle, referring all art forms to an original ideal or model, from which all else emanated, a neo-platonic or Hemsterhuisian notion of beauty, the outward manifestation seen as but a mirror image of the inner. These notions informed the staid verses of those didactic or poetological poems, Prometheus or Pygmalion , of which Schlegel was so proud.
This, too, would guarantee its autonomy and also the validity and truthfulness of human feelings. Schlegel had formulated these ideas in the lectures that he gave at Jena. His hearers may in any case not have been aware of the extent of his borrowings from existing material.
An example was his use of his Horen essay as the source for his notions on language, not substantially altered. His ideas on euphony and musicality in language drew on his opening contribution to the Athenaeum , Die Sprachen [The Languages]. Sections on Greek poetry had been copied straight from his brother Friedrich. The passage on Shakespeare was little advance on Eschenburg. All contain elements of the others. Take poetry. A didactic poem like Die Kunst der Griechen [The Art of the Greeks] was both a threnody for a lost past and also a statement positing the centrality of Greek culture for a post-classical age.
The Life of August Wilhelm Schlegel
Friedrich Schlegel, too, while editing the and numbers of the Athenaeum , had privately been catching up on his reading of the sixteenth and seventeenth-century Italian and Spanish classics. For August Wilhelm, Dante had seemed preferable, despite his eccentric theology. At least the characters in the Inferno had flesh and blood. True, much offended the sensitivities Ugolino, for instance , but it was preferable to the exsangious creations of Der Messias and by extension, his model, Milton.
Its two major reviewers were, not surprisingly, Schlegel and Voss. For there were absurdities in Klopstock, not least his imagined link between Greek and German fanciful ideas involving the Thracian Getae. This Schlegel could easily rectify. If one wanted brevity, better examples could be found in Aeschylus rather than in Homer, on whom Klopstock seemed to be fixated.
True, English and French had their limits as poetic languages, but Italian certainly did not. Klopstock had also lived in an age unfazed by manifest improbabilities, happily linking druids and bards, German and Celt, Greek and Goth as one linguistic community. This in its turn was an olive branch to the same Grimm whom Schlegel had exquisitely torn to pieces in his massive review of He would now learn that the great mother language, Sanskrit, followed Greek, Gothic perhaps as well had its poetry survived.
In , but addressing the specialist audience of his fellow-Sanskritists and linguisticians in his Indische Bibliothek , Schlegel had been yet more even-handed towards Klopstock, to Goethe and Schiller also, knowing that neither Klopstock nor Schiller were alive to appreciate this irenic gesture.
It still had its gaze firmly fixed on the works of art themselves and the things to be observed as one stood in front of them. Only after this necessary analysis did the discourse merge into poetic utterance. But there were also immediate differences between the Romantics and Goethe.
Their remarks reflected existing hierarchies within art discourse or engaged with these. Historical painting ranked as superior to landscape or seascape, genre or still life. Venetian, Bolognese, and French schools stood in that order of esteem.modernpsychtraining.com/cache/locator/kyno-cell-phone.php
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Generally these connoisseurs followed their own dictates and looked or overlooked as they chose. If that meant more Venetians and almost no Dutch, well and good.
The dialogue and the poems he had written, the descriptions of paintings were by the said lady. One can draw inferences from the respective contributions of the three interlocutors in the conversation: Louise, generally accepted as being Caroline herself, Waller, who is August Wilhelm, and Reinhold, a kind of collective figure for the remaining friends. Waller summed up the general consensus—quoting Herder or Hemsterhuis in all but name—that statuary was not a mere question of shape or contour or mass or repose. The whole conversation was, however, called The Paintings , and so the visitors walked on towards the painting galleries, their real goal.
These were in reality scattered, but the essay conveniently assembled them, one Italian Salvator Rosa , one French Claude , one Dutch Ruysdael. Total coverage was not their aim. They were content to dispraise a Claudesque painting by Hackert as being essentially lifeless if it suited them.
Instead they attempted a close, sometimes quite technical, analysis of the three paintings.
This could be seen increasingly in the accounts of Correggio, who was beginning here his advance in Romantic esteem to become the equal of Raphael. There were outright condemnations, too, that amounted to blanket rejections of schools or centuries: the Flemish Rubens , French neo-classicism Poussin , the eighteenth century in general Batoni, Mengs.
Waller listed them: technically, the right balance of facial details formed a harmonious whole he never mentions the crown of thorns ; aesthetically, it produced repose, dignity, greatness, and serenity. Louise confessed to tears. Was she in danger of becoming Catholic? But art never lost its autonomy. It was not so suffused with feeling as to become something vague and indefinable. It did not inhibit further analysis of the supporting figures , but it raised two important issues. The first was the close relationship of the fine arts to poetry.
August Wilhelm saw the matter less extravagantly. This was also the uncle of Auguste von Buttlar speaking, displeased at her embrace of Rome.
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There was his Flaxman essay as well. The engravings, first produced by Tommaso Piroli in Rome in , were expensive and copies were initially hard to come by. Gone were the reservations that he had expressed but a few years ago. In those sections where Dante went beyond the powers of human expression, Flaxman used geometrical figures circle, triangle , themselves mystical symbols of the godhead, and passed beyond mere representation.
In that sense, this Athenaeum essay was entering regions where Goethe already had reservations and later was to see merely superstition. Their effect was of necessity limited, for students did not flock to Schlegel as they did to Schelling and as they had done to Fichte, and it is only through the initiatives of two promising and intelligent young men, Ast and Savigny, that we have any record at all. Even then they have only handed down to us those lectures now called Philosophische Kunstlehre [Philosophical Art Theory].
These contain sections dealing with German literature, but they are presumably different from the lectures on the history of German poetry now lost that he also announced. In keeping with other German universities, Jena had been offering lectures on aesthetics not necessarily under this exact title for decades. Schlegel could therefore be seen as a versatile and reliable colleague in both classical and modern literatures and was also the man best suited to inject the central tenets of transcendental idealism into the academic teaching of aesthetics.
Aesthetics, as the philosophical study of human awareness of art and beauty, dealt with such absolutes, themselves the absolute aims of humanity. As man becomes aware of his ultimate purpose, so he grows in his awareness of art and beauty. Art is by this definition no mere accessory, has no ancillary function, is no frill or furbelow. These are ideas firmly rooted in Schiller or Fichte. On one level, this meant setting out the history of aesthetics from Plato and Aristotle to Baumgarten, Winckelmann and Kant. We study Homer, he said, because he was closest to this primeval poetry before it became the preserve of a chosen few and was changed into art.
Although climate and physical or phonetic differences lead to disparity, all language is by nature rhythmical, musical or image-laden. Image is the essential of myth, and myth is the product of the powers of human expression. Here Schlegel first developed the basically anthropological ideas human figure, oracle, fate, belief in life after death, the golden age that were to form part of his Romantic mythology but also informed his later Bonn lectures on ancient history.
Again, there were many prefigurations here of his later Berlin and Vienna lectures. It was to be followed by another gap in the Romantic ranks when early in Novalis succumbed to the tuberculosis that had been undermining his frail constitution. Significantly, they did not include his radical Die Christenheit oder Europa [Christendom or Europe], a vision of history too controversial for readers in the new nineteenth century.