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Alles ist eitel, spricht der Prediger (1823) Op. 4 no.4

Alles ist eitel, spricht der Prediger

Es waren Ruhm und Weisheit mein,
Und Jugend und mächtiges Walten.
Ich trank aus goldnen Bechern Wein,
Umgeben von holden Gestalten.
Ich sonnte mein Herz in ihrem Blick,
Und fühlte von Lieb' es erglühen.
Was der Mensch sich wünscht, und was spendet das Glück,
War mir, als dem Herrscher, verliehen.
Ich lasse die verfloßne Zeit
Am Geist vorüber schweben.
Möcht' ich bei all' der Herrlichkeit
Sie noch einmal verleben?
Kein Tag, keine Stund' ist dahingerollt
Wo sanft mein Herz gerastet,
Und meine Würde schmückte kein Gold,
Das mich nicht schwer belastet.
Die grimmen Schlangen auf dem Feld,
Vermag die Kunst zu zähmen;
Die, so das Herz gefangen hält,
Wie ihr den Stachel nehmen?
Sie horcht nicht auf der Weisheit Wort,
Auf Saiten, kunstvoll geschlagen,
Ihr Stachel brennet immerfort,
Der Geist, er muß es ertragen!

All is Vanity, Saith the Preacher

Fame, wisdom, love, and power were mine,
And health and youth possess'd me;
My goblets blush'd from every vine,
And lovely forms carress'd me;
I sunn'd my heart in beauty's eyes,
And felt my soul grow tender;
All earth can give, or mortal prize,
Was mine of regal splendour.
I strive to number o'er what days
Remembrance can discover,
Which all that life or earth displays
Would lure me to live over.
There rose no day, there roll'd no hour
Of pleasure unembitter'd:
And not a trapping deck'd my power
That gall'd not while it glitter'd.
The serpent of the field, by art
And spells, is won from harming;
But that which coils around the heart,
Oh! who hath power of charming?
It will not list to wisdom's lore,
Nor music's voice can lure it;
But there it stings for evermore
The soul that must endure it.

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Johann Carl Gottfried Loewe (G30 November 1796 – 20 April 1869),was a German composer, tenor singer and conductor. He wrote over 400 ballads and songs.

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George Gordon Byron (later Noel), 6th Baron Byron, FRS , commonly known simply as Lord Byron, was an English poet and a leading figure in the Romantic movement. Among his best-known works are the lengthy narrative poems Don Juan and Childe Harold's Pilgrimage, and the short lyric "She Walks in Beauty".

Byron is regarded as one of the greatest British poets, and remains widely read and influential. He travelled widely across Europe, especially in Italy where he lived for seven years. Later in life, Byron joined the Greek War of Independence fighting the Ottoman Empire, for which many Greeks revere him as a national hero. He died in 1824 at the young age of 36 from a fever contracted while in Missolonghi. Often described as the most flamboyant and notorious of the major Romantics, Byron was both celebrated and castigated in life for his aristocratic excesses, including huge debts, numerous love affairs - with men as well as women, as well as rumours of a scandalous liaison with his half-sister - and self-imposed exile.

He also fathered Ada, Countess of Lovelace, whose work on Charles Babbage's Analytical Engine is considered a founding document in the field of computer science, and Allegra Byron, who died in childhood — as well as, possibly, Elizabeth Medora Leigh out of wedlock.

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