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The Sorrows of Werter

By Johann Wolfgang Goethe



May 12.

FAIRIES and Genii hover over my steps, or the most lively imagination influences my senses, and fills my heart. All Paradise is before me. Here is a fountain, to which I am attached by a form of enchantment, like Melusina and her sisters. It is a spring of pure and clear water, which gushes from the rock, in a cave at the bottom of one of the hills; about twenty steps lead to it; the high trees which hang over it, the cool refreshing air of the place, every thing is agreeable, interesting, striking. I never fail to go to it every day, and generally pass an hour there. The young girls come from the town to fetch water from it -- innocent and necessary employment, and formerly the occupation of kings daughters. The time of the patriarchs presents itself to my imagination. I see our ances- {7} tors concluding treaties and making alliances by the side of fountains, propitious angels bearing witness. Whoever does not enter into these sensations, my dear friend, has never really enjoyed cool repose by the side of a spring, after a long summer's walk.