1880

January through early February: Naumburg

FN still beset by ill health. Writes to Overbeck: "Es gieng schlecht, ich konnte nicht diese paar Zeilen schreiben ... Oh dieser Winter! (Im letzten Jahre hatte ich 118 schwere Anfallstage)." ["It has been going poorly, I could barely write these few lines... O this winter! (in the past year I had 118 days of significant illness)"]

Excerpts from the notebooks
"Das Genie wie ein blinder Seekrebs, der fortwährend nach allen Seiten tastet und gelegentlich etwas fängt: er tastet aber nicht, um zu fangen, sondern weil seine Glieder sich tummeln müssen." ["The genius like a blind sea crab that continuously probes in all directions and occasionally catches something: he probes however not in order to catch, but because his limbs must cavort about"] (KGW V-1 p. 347)

"Grundsatz: in der gesamten Geschichte der Menschheit bisher kein Zweck, keine vernünftige geheime Leitung, kein Instinkt, sondern Zufall, Zufall, Zufall --- und mancher günstige." ["Fundamental principle: in the entire history of mankind until now no purpose, no secret rational leading, no instinct, but rather accident, accident, accident --- and some beneficial ones."] (KGW V-1, p. 349)

"Versuche einer außermoralischen Weltbrachtung früher zu leicht von mir versucht --- eine aesthetische (die Verehrung des Genies ---)" ["Attempts at a extra-moral world view earlier too superficially attempted by me --- an aesthetic one (the reverence of the genius ---)"] (KGW V-1, p. 361)

Mid-February through mid-March: Riva del Garda

Unbeknownst to FN, Paul Rée sends Köselitz 250 francs to enable Köselitz to go to Riva to assist FN.

Comments from the notebooks
"Das Neue an unserer letztigen Stellung zur Philosophie ist eine Überzeugung, die noch kein Zeitalter hatte: daß wir die Wahrheit nicht haben. Alle früheren Menschen 'hatten die Wahrheit'; selbst die Skeptiker" ["What is novel about our recent position towards philosophy is the conviction, that until now no age shared: that we do not have the truth. All earlier humans 'had the truth'; even the sceptics"] (KGW V-1, p. 382)

Mid-March through June: Venice

With assistance from Köselitz, FN finds lodging in Venice. Köselitz is extremely helpful, reading aloud to FN and taking dictation.

Late March: Rohde visits Overbeck in Basel.

Readings during this period: Spencer, Data of Ethics; Stifter, Nachsommer; J. St. Mill; Lubbock, Die Entstehung der Zivilisation; Siebenlist, Schopenhauers Philosophie der Tragödie; Overbeck, Christlichkeit; Lüdemann, Anthropologie des Paulus; von Engelhardt, Das Christenthum Justin des Märtyrers.

July through August: Marienbad

Next stop in FN's search of an agreeable climate is Marienbad. He reports that many guests are Polish and that he is frequently taken to be Polish (perhaps the germ for the notion, recorded eight years later in Ecce Homo, that FN's ancestry is Polish).

Summer 1880 readings: J. Baumann, Handbuch der Moral [Handbook of Morality]; H. L. Martensen, Grundriß des Systems der Moralphilosophie [Outline of the System of Moral Philosophy; Martensen was a Hegelian and as such one of Kierkegaard's principle targets]; Stendhal; Balzac; G. Sand.

September through early October: Naumburg

Overbeck spends two days visiting FN in Naumburg. On 8 October, FN travels to Basel to visit Overbeck.

Mid-October through mid-November: Stresa

October 26: Overbeck once again declines to participate in the Bayreuther Blätter undertaking.

Mid-November through December: Genoa

FN enjoys the city and its mountain trails. Work proceeds on a new book. Principal readings: Stendhal, de Rémusat, Pascal, Emerson.

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