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Werther may not be known for giving the best advice, but at times he says some really prophetic stuff. Werther is somebody who knows suffering. He loved so hard it killed him. Werther feels very feminine to me; as if many of the things he suffers with we’d typically attribute to a girl. (Perhaps I feel this way because I just finished reading Madame Bovary.) If Werther were modern, he’d write his letters on tumblr and have text images like the one to the right.

What makes Werther really spectacular is the intimate confessions he makes to Wilhelm. The love story is obviously between Lotte and Werther, but there are two other love stories that float along in The Sorrows of Young Werther. The most important one is the crucial friendship between Wilhelm and Werther. If it wasn’t for this bond, we’d be left without a story. Though Werther never explains the back story of their relationship (and that’s a good thing. It’d be awkward to write a letter to a friend about why you were friends.), the level of trust is shown by all the details Werther shares. Wilhelm and the reader get to listen to the suffering and shame Werther feels. We get to understand Werther’s thoughts through the filter of these letters.

The other love story here is one filled with jealousy. To be jealous of someone you must be jealous of two people. Werther is jealous of Albert and Lotte. These two are happily married and aware of the discomfort Werther experiences and they do their best to soothe his ache.

In the end, there’s nothing to be done and Werther follows some of his earlier beliefs that compared his situation to that of someone suffering with a malignant fever.

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