Fine goat herder you are.
JOHANN GOTTFRIED VON HERDER (1744-1803), one of the most prolific and influential writers that Germany has produced, was born in Mohrungen, a small town in East Prussia, on the 25th of August 1744.
Like his contemporary Lessing, Herder had throughout his life to struggle against adverse circumstances.
And the scholars of the Netherlands combined to do him honour; even Herder regarded him as a greater poet than Horace.
The murder of Kotzebue by Karl Sand, however, shocked him out of his extreme revolutionary views, and from this time he tended, under the influence of the writings of Hamann and Herder, more and more in the direction of conservatism and romanticism, until at last he ended, in a mood almost of pessimism, by attaching himself to the extreme right wing of the forces of reaction.
In his Ideen zur Philosophic der Geschichte, Herder adopts Leibnitz's idea of a graduated scale of beings, at the same time conceiving of the lower stages as the conditions, of the higher.
Von Barenbach's Herder als Vorgdnger Darwins, a work which tends to exaggerate the proximity of the two writers.
Here he lived in close intercourse with Schiller, Goethe, Herder and the most distinguished literary men of the time.
(1719-1790), who served in the Prussian army under Frederick the Great, is chiefly famous as the husband of Caroline (1721-1774), "the great landgravine," who counted Goethe, Herder and Grimm among her friends and was described by Frederick the Great as femina sexu, ingenio vir.
After holding minor educational posts, he obtained in 1791, through the influence of Herder, the appointment of rector of the gymnasium at Weimar, where he entered into a circle of literary men, including Wieland, Schiller, and Goethe.
Taking up the idea of a divine education of the human race, which Lessing and Herder had made so familiar to the modern mind, and firmly believing that to each of the leading nations of antiquity a special task had been providentially assigned, Ewald felt no difficulty about Israel's place in universal history, or about the problem which that race had been called upon to solve.
There he came under the influence of Kant, who was just then passing from physical to metaphysical problems. Without becoming a disciple of Kant, young Herder was deeply stimulated to fresh critical inquiry by that thinker's revolutionary ideas in philosophy.
This writer had already won a name, and in young Herder he found a mind well fitted to be the receptacle and vehicle of his new ideas on literature.
There he enjoyed the society of Goethe, Wieland, Jean Paul (who came to Weimar in order to be near Herder), and others, the patronage of the court, with whom as a preacher he was very popular, and an opportunity of carrying out some of his ideas of school reform.
While much that Herder produced after settling in Weimar has little value, he wrote also some of his best works, among others his collection of popular poetry on which he had been engaged for many years, Stimmen der Volker in Liedern (1778-1779); his translation of the Spanish romances of the Cid (1805); his celebrated work on Hebrew poetry, Vom Geist der hebrdischen Poesie (1782-1783); and his opus magnum, the Ideen zur Philosophie der Geschichte der Menschheit (1784-1791).
Lessing was the exponent of German classicism; Herder, on the contrary, was a pioneer of the romantic movement.
Herder was thus an evolutionist, but an evolutionist still under the influence of Rousseau.
This historical idea was carried by Herder into the regions of poetry, art, religion, language, and finally into human culture as a whole.
Herder does this, and in doing so shows a far deeper understanding of Shakespeare's genius than his predecessor had shown.
Herder had a genuine appreciation for early German painters, and helped to awaken the modern interest in Albrecht Diirer.
By his work on language Uber den Ursprung der Sprache (1772), Herder may be said to have laid the first rude foundations of the science of comparative philology and that deeper science of the ultimate nature and origin of language.
" If," Herder says, " it is incomprehensible to others how a human mind could invent language, it is as incomprehensible to me how a human mind could be what it is without discovering language for itself."
Herder defines human history as " a pure natural history of human powers, actions and propensities, modified by time and place."
The Ideen shows us that Herder is an evolutionist after the manner of Leibnitz, and not after that of more modern evolutionists.
It is worth noting, however, that Herder in his provokingly tentative way of thinking comes now and again very near ideas made familiar to us by Spencer and Darwin.
Herder is more successful in tracing the early developments of particular peoples than in constructing a scientific theory of evolution.
Herder was much attracted by Schelling's early writings, but appears to have disliked Hegelianism because of the atheism it seemed to him to involve.
In the Kalligone (1800), work directed against Kant's Kritik der Urteilskraft, Herder argues for the close connexion of the beautiful and the good.
For Herder's correspondence, see Aus Herders Nachlass (3 vols., 1856-1857), Herders Reise nach Italien (1859), Von and an Herder: Ungedruckte Briefe (3 vols., 1861-1862) - all three works edited by H.
Von Herder (6 vols., 1846; C. Joret, Herder et la renaissance litteraire en Allemagne au X VII I e siecle (1875); F.
Von Bdrenbach, Herder als Vorganger Darwins (1877); R.
The great series of German thinkers, Lessing, Herder, Kant, Hegel, Fichte, Schleiermacher and their 1 This does not, of course, preclude the possibility of degeneration in particular instances.
An intelligent patron of literature and art, he attracted to his court the leading scholars in Germany; Goethe, Schiller and Herder were members of this illustrious band, and the little state, hitherto obscure, attracted the eyes of all Europe.'
The second moment of importance in Goethe's Strassburg period was his meeting with Herder, who spent some weeks in Strassburg undergoing an operation of the eye.
In this thinker, who was his senior by five years, Goethe found the master he sought; Herder taught him the significance of Gothic architecture, revealed to him the charm of nature's simplicity, and inspired him with enthusiasm for Shakespeare and the Volkslied.
In 1826 a formal festival was got up by some of his admirers, one of whom, Herder, spoke of his categories as new gods; and he was presented with much poetry and a silver mug.
Goethe was then in Italy, and the duke of Weimar was absent from Weimar; but the poet was kindly received by Herder and Wieland, by the duchess Amalie and other court notabilities.
Von Herder, Ideen zur Phil.
Von Herder suggested that increase by multiplication with the consequent struggle for existence had played a large part in the organic world, but his theme remained vague and undeveloped.
Here he was much influenced by intercourse with Johann Gottfried Herder, who frequently examined at the school.
In 1771 he published his Zerstreute Anmerkungen fiber das Epigramm, and einige der vornehmsten Epigrammatisten - a work which Herder described as "itself an epigram."
It was speedily translated into many European languages, and Herder and Goethe (in his earlier period) were among its profound admirers.