Weltschmerz: n: (literally) World Pain (from German). The feeling of sadness at the suffering that surrounds you in the world. The pain of being an empath and sensitive to all despair and distress in the world. An ill-defined weariness at the burdens carried universally by all of humankind.
Weltschmerz comes into English usage via ‘The Life of Byron’ by Karl Elze (1872).
“It was Byron who introduced world-sorrow (Weltschmerz) into modern English literature, though in English it may be remarked that we have no expression for such a thing. On the other hand, in the literature of Germany, world-sorrow plays a far more important part. This world sorrow rests primarily in the ever-present grief of the human race at the transitoriness of all things earthly, the gloomy destiny and uncertain lot of man,” ~ Karl Elze.
When the child was a child,
It threw a stick like a lance against a tree,
And it quivers there still today.