The Sorrows of Young Werther

The Sorrows of Young Werther Book Two: Dec 21-22, 1772 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
That night, Werther writes to Albert, requesting to borrow Albert’s pistols for a journey he’s planning to undertake. Lotte, who is there when Albert receives the note, grows pale when she hears Werther’s request, but does not stop the pistols from being lent.
There’s a certain symbolism in using Albert’s pistols. It’s as though Werther wants the man who figuratively killed him to be in some way responsible for actually killing him.
Themes
Self-Absorption of Youth Theme Icon
Suicide Theme Icon
Werther has made arrangements for his burial, and he requests in his suicide note that Lotte make sure they’re honored. He asks, also, to be buried in his traditional clothes: a blue coat, buff waistcoat, and boots. He orders his servants to bed early, telling them that he plans to leave on a journey before six o’clock. At midnight, he shoots himself in the head. Werther does not die immediately. Rather, his passing takes much of the following day. When she discovers his suicide, Lotte faints at Albert’s feet. She is unable to attend Werther’s funeral, and neither is Albert, as he fears that Lotte might follow in Werther’s path. No priests were present, either.
In the end, Werther remains as alone as he felt in life. Even his belief that God has forsaken him proves true. Since the church forbade (and forbids) suicide, Werther was unable to have his funeral attended by priests. It’s also fitting that Werther fails to die immediately after shooting himself. Remember that every time he made his mind up about something, it ended up taking weeks for him to act on it, since he was mired in uncertainty about everything.
Themes
The Heart vs. The Mind Theme Icon
Self-Absorption of Youth Theme Icon
Suicide Theme Icon