Category Archives: Christoph August Tiedge


Christoph August Tiedge: “To the Memory of Körner”

THEODOR KÖRNER].

THEODOR KÖRNER

Portrait (1813–14) by Emma Sophie Körner.

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Proudly, e’en now, the young oak waved on high,

Hung round with youthful green full gorgeously;

And calmly graceful, and yet bold and free,

Reared its majestic head in upper sky.

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Hope said, “How great, in coming days, shall be

That tree’s renown!” Already, far or nigh,

No monarch of the forest towered so high.

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The trembling leaves murmured melodiously

As love’s soft whisper; and its branches rung

As if the master of the tuneful string,

Mighty Apollo, there his lyre had hung.

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But, ah! It sank. A storm had bowed its pride!

Alas, untimely snatched in life’s green spring,

My noble youth the bard and hero, died!

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Where sleeps my youth upon his country’s breast?

Show me the place where ye have laid him down.

‘Mid his own music’s echoes let him rest,

And in the brightness of his fair renown.

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Large was his heart; his free and heavenward pressed;

Alternate songs and deeds his brow did crown.

Where sleeps my youth upon his country’s breast?

Show me the place where ye have laid him down.

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“The youth lies slumbering where the battleground

Drank in the blood of noble hearts like rain.”

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There, youthful hero, in thine ear shall sound

A grateful echo of thy harp’s last strain;

“Oh, Father, bless thou me!” shall ring again;

That blessing thou in calmer world hast found.

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Ye who so keenly mourn the loved one’s death,

Go with me to the mound that marks his grave,

And breathe awhile the consecrated breath

Of the old oak whose boughs high o’er him wave.

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Sad Friendship there hath laid the young and brave;

Her hand shall guide us thither. Hark! She saith,

“Beneath the hallowed oak’s cool, peaceful breath

These hands had dug the hero’s silent grave;

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Yet were the dear remains forbid to reset

Where lip to lip in bloody strife was pressed,

And ghastly death stares from the mouldering heap;

A statelier tomb that sacred dust must keep;

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A German prince hath spoken: This new guest,

And noblest, in a princely hall shall sleep.”

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There rests the Muse’s son – his conflicts o’er.

Forget him not, my German country, thou!

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The wreath that twined around his youthful brow

May deck his urn – but him, alas! No more.

Dost ask, thou herdsmaid, for those songs of yore?

Though fled his form, his soul is with us now.

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And ye who mourn the hero gone before,

Here on his grave renew the patriot vow;

Through freedom’s holy struggle he hath made,

Ye noble German sons, his heavenward way.

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Feel what he felt, when bending o’er his clay;

Thus honor him, while, in the green-arched shade,

Sweet choirs of nightingales, through grove and glade,

Awake the memory of his kindling lay.

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C. A. Tiedge: “To the Sun”

By Christoph August Tiedge (1752-1841. Set by Franz Peter Schubert (1797-1828) , “An die Sonne,” D. 272 (1815), published 1872. Translation © by Emily Ezust, from The Lied & Art Song Texts Page.

Heidelberger_Schloss_von_Carl_Rottmann_1815a

Historic Heidelberg – 1815, Carl Anton Joseph Rottman

 
An die Sonne

Regal morning sun,

I greet you in your bliss,

I greet you heartily in your splendour!

The hills are already flowing with the gold

of your robes, and the birds

in every wood are all awake.

 

Everything feels your blessing;

the meadows beneath you sing;

everything becomes harmony:

and you listen with pleasure to the choir

of the merry woods; o listen,

listen also to my song of praise.