The Fairy Tale of the Green Snake and the Beautiful Lily
A true fairy story is a work of art. At Michaelmas in 1795, a series of stories appeared, of which the concluding one was a fairy tale: The Green Snake and the Beautiful Lily.
The tale tells of magical transformation – one that, when the time is at hand, can be experienced by anyone. The author of these stories was Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, and the creation of his fairy tale would have far-reaching consequences.
This edition of Goethe’s fairy tale arose from illustrator David Newbatt’s inspiration to join Thomas Carlyle’s English translation with a new series of pictures. The purpose is to reveal the sevenfold process that unfolds within Goethe’s fairy tale – a process that forms a path of inner development and personal transformation.
In addition to the translation by Thomas Carlyle and the series of seven pictures by David Newbatt, The Green Snake and the Beautiful Lily includes an introduction by Tom Raines.
About the Author
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749–1832) is a giant of German and world literature. Indeed, he coined the term Weltliteratur and spoke Greek, Latin, French, English, and Italian. In addition to its profound quality, the volume of work during his eighty-two-year lifetime is impressive. Among other works, Goethe wrote a worldwide, bestselling novel, The Sorrows of Young Werther (Die Leiden des Jungen Werthers, 1774), volumes of poetry, and several dramas, including his masterwork Faust— a massive two-volume work that was not entirely finished by the time of the poet’s death. Goethe also engaged in painting and science, from which came his Theory of Color (“Farbenlehre”) among other scientific works—a collected edition that Rudolf Steiner edited and introduced as a young man (see Nature’s Open Secret). Indeed, Goethe’s body of scientific and philosophical works was one of the most important influences in the development of Rudolf Steiner’s early work and for Anthroposophy as a whole.
David Newbatt is an artist and teacher who lives and works at a Camphill Community for young adults with special needs in Aberdeen, Scotland. He also teaches art at the Aberdeen Waldorf School. David works in a wide variety of mediums, mainly watercolors, pastels, and acrylics. He has illustrated various books, including a story by Novalis, the poem of Olaf Åsteson, and Goethe’s fairy tale. He is also a prolific mural painter. His works have been exhibited throughout Europe.
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