Some notes to Blowper
(added as response to viewers who have trouble with the German)
This, of course, is not a German word at all, but merely a play on
pronunciation of long ö. It sounds like the a in "name," except with the lips tightly
puckered as for oo. This is the vowel which professors like to hear in Goethe's name (nöm).
The gold piece
was the standard monetary unit of the Prussian Empire
established by Otto von Bismark, prime minister appointed in 1862 by Emperor
Wilhelm I. Some of his accomplishments are sketched in above, especially the defeat
of the French in 1871.
These two terms need only the remark
that German professors enjoy the prestige
National-Litteratur accorded, say, our federal judges, and that they tend therefore to be sensitive indicators
of the prevailing political breeze.
French revenge, a term once used for one or
the other venereal disease, as archaic
English "French disease" (syphilis). Compare "Montezuma's revenge" (dysentary).
used on the stage, i.e., standard German, often called "High German."
of poets--some might not regard that as mockery, but Huck Finn's view of
royalty: "Take them all around, they're a mighty ornery lot. It's the way they're
raised," does match Goethe's explanation of his own prince's behavior:
"Unfortunately it is just in their nature, and the frog is made for water, even if
he can tarry a while on land" (Leider sieht man daraus daß es in der tiefsten Natur
steckt, und daß der Frosch fürs Wasser gemacht ist wenn er gleich auch eine Zeitlang
sich auf der Erde befinden kan--WA Briefe 5, 74).
Immerhin . . . fein In
any case, whatever is foreign seems elegant.
was . . . gemein But anybody who is German, pucker up your lips. Don't be common!