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Der Mondabend (1815) D141

Der Mondabend

Rein und freundlich lacht der Himmel
Nieder auf die dunkle Erde;
Tausend goldne Augen blinken
Lieblich in die Brust der Menschen,
Und des Mondes lichte Scheibe
Segelt heiter durch die Bläue.
Auf den goldnen Strahlen zittern
Süsser Wehmut Silbertropfen,
Dringen sanft mit leisem Hauche
In das stille Herz voll Liebe,
Und befeuchten mir das Auge
Mit der Sehnsucht zartem Taue.
Funkelnd prangt der Stern des Abends
In den lichtbesä’ten Räumen,
Spielt mit seinem Demantblitzen
Durch der Lichte Duftgewebe,
Und viel holde Engelknaben
Streuen Lilien um die Sterne.
Schön und hehr ist wohl der Himmel
In des Abends Wunderglanze,
Aber meines Lebens Sterne
Wohnen in dem kleinsten Kreise:
In das Auge meiner Silli
Sind sie alle hingezaubert.

The Moonlit Evening

The heavens smile, pure and kindly,
upon the dark earth below;
a thousand golden eyes shine
fondly into men’s hearts,
and the moon’s bright disc
sails serenely through the blue.
On the golden beams tremble
the silver drops of sweet melancholy;
gently, with soft breath,
they penetrate the silent, loving heart
and moisten my eyes
with the tender dew of longing.
The evening star sparkles resplendently
in the light-strewn expanses of space,
and with diamond flashes plays
through the hazy web of light;
and many a sweet cherub
strews lilies around the stars.
Fair and exalted are the heavens
in the wondrous light of evening;
but the stars of my life
dwell within the smallest circle:
they have all been charmed
into the eyes of my Silli.

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Franz Peter Schubert was an late Classical and early Romantic composer. He produced a vast oeuvre during his short life, composing more the 600 vocal works (largely Lieder), and well as several symphonies, operas, and a large body of piano music. He was uncommonly gifted from a young age, but appreciation of his music was limited during his lifetime. His work became more popular in the decades after his death, and was praised by 19th century composers, including Mendelssohn, Schumann, Brahms, and Liszt.

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Kumpf was born in Klagenfurt, the son of a servant and a maid, both from the Upper Palatinate. Johann Gottfried attended high school and from 1799 studied medicine in Vienna. In 1804 he received his doctorate in medicine from the University of Pest. In Trieste , he opened a medical practice in 1805. In autumn 1811 he returned to Klagenfurt, where he eventually became State physician.

However Kumpf's significance lay in his cultural work in Klagenfurt. Shortly after his return in 1811 he became editor of the newly founded journal Carinthia, which became a supplement to the Klagenfurt newspaper. In 1817 Kumpf was among the founders of the association for social entertainment; In 1818 he founded the Carinthian newspaper. 

Kumpf worked primarily as a poet, published in Castelli Selam , Aglaia, and under the pseudonym Ermin in Carinthia. His subjects include nature, religious considerations, love poems and panegyrics on Carinthia. 

As a physician, he founded a society for the care of the poor and the sick and he was Examiner at the Klagenfurt medical-surgical establishment.

Kumpf  died on February 21, 1862, and was buried in St. Ruprecht.

Schubert set to music his poems Der Mondabend (D141) and Mein Gruss an den Mai (D305).



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