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Originally published by Goethe's friend and personal secretary, Johann Peter Eckermann (1792-1854) in German in 1836, this work comprises Eckermann's recollections of his conversations with the German writer and philosopher during the last nine years of his life. Eckermann published a further volume in 1848 using both his own memories and material from the journals of Swiss scientist Frederic Soret, who was also a close acquaintance of Goethe. The work initially sold poorly in Germany, but quickly became popular internationally, and contributed to the rehabilitation of Goethe's scholarly reputation both within Germany and throughout the world. This edition, translated by British playwright and translator John Oxenford (1812-77) was published in two volumes in London in 1850. Oxenford combined the original three volumes, putting the conversations in chronological order. The topics discussed include religion, politics, literature, poetry and natural sciences. Volume 1 covers the years 1822 to 1827.