This volume is a translation of the treatise
Grundlinien einer Erkenntnistheorie der Goetheschen
Weltanschauung, published in 1886. This was originally
prepared by Rudolf Steiner as a supplement to
Goethes naturwissenschaftliche Schriften,
as edited by him, with ample introductory and interpretive notes, for
collective work Deutsche National-Literatur.
The English version is rendered from the second edition, of 1924, and
includes the prefatory and supplementary comments of that edition.
A few comments on
the translator's usage may be called for.
Wissenschaft has been translated
knowledge, scientific knowledge, or science according to the
apparent requirement of the context. Erkennen
has generally been translatedcognition, but in one or more passages
the act of cognition, and, where it seemed necessary, knowledge.
Erkenntnis has been translated
knowledge, where this seemed adequate, but in one or more instances,
for greater exactitude, item of knowledge.
Denken has seemed to the translator
generally no more verbal in character than thought,
when this appears in English without the definite or
indefinite article. On the other hand, thinking
seems at times to suggest rather the effort to apprehend
than the achievement of apprehension — the
search for right concepts rather than the attainment of right
concepts. Hence Denken has most
frequently been translated thought,
though also rather frequently thinking.
Wahrnehmung is translated either
perception or percept, according as the context seemed
to require the sense the act of perceiving or the perceived.
Ideahas been printed with initial capital letter in a few
instances where the context seemed to emphasize the sense of
objective reality in its usage.