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、One of the world's first best-sellers, this tragic masterpiece attained an instant and lasting success upon its 1774 publication. A sensitive exploration of the mind of a young artist, the tale addresses age-old questions—the meaning of love, of death, and the possibility of redemption—in the form of Werther's alternately joyful and despairing letters about his unrequited love. Goethe's portrayal of a character who struggles to reconcile his artistic sensibilities with the demands of the objective world proved tremendously influential to subsequent writers and continues to speak to modern readers.