Title: Special Lecture On Goethe’s Visit To Naples, 1987
Location: Gion Community Centre
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In 1786, the great German writer Johann von Goethe, already rich and famous as the author of The Sorrows of Young Werther (Die Leiden des jungen Werthers), the 37-year-old Goethe set off for Italy from Weimar in the early hours of September 3rd, 1786, abandoning his employer, the young duke of Saxe-Weimar.
He began his journey in a mail coach under an assumed name, Filippo Moller, without a servant and with precious little luggage. Thus began his quest for personal renewal both as a man and as a writer.
He spent two years in Italy, during which time he visited Verona, Venice, Rome, Naples and Sicily and many other places along the way. He spent his time studying the arts, the natural world, specifically plants, and the geology of the regions he passed through as well as writing or editing several of his plays and attempting to improve his skills as an artist.
This lecture will offer a brief overview of Goethe and his Italian Journey before focusing on Goethe’s adventures in Naples, on the chief attractions of the day, and on some of the key personalities who he met while he was there, specifically Sir William Hamilton and Miss Emma Hart, later Lady Hamilton.
The lecture will be concluded with the story of what happened when Emma Hamilton, the most famous English woman of her time, met one of the most famous Englishmen of all time…
Start Time: 10:00
End Time: 11:30