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The Sorrows of Werter

By Johann Wolfgang Goethe



March 24.

I HAVE written to court for leave to resign; and I hope I shall obtain it. You will forgive me for not having previously consulted you. It was expedient for me to leave this place. -- I knew all you could alledge in order to induce me to stay, and therefore --. I beg of you to soften this news as much as you can to my mother, when you acquaint her with it. I can do nothing for myself; how should I do any thing for others? She will undoubtedly be grieved to find, that I have stopped short in that career which would have led directly to my being first a Privy Counsellor, and then Minister; and to see me thus returning to my original nothing. Argue on the subject as much as you will, combine all the reasons which should have induced me to {135} stay; -- I am going, that is sufficient. But that you may not be ignorant where I am going, I shall tell you that here is the Prince of ----, who is much pleased with my company, and who having heard of my intention to resign, has invited me to his country house, to pass the spring months with him. He assures me that I shall be left quite at liberty; and, as we agree on all subjects but one, I shall venture to accompany him.