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Blondels Lied (1840) Op. 53 no.1

Part of a series or song cycle:

Romanzen und Balladen, iii (Op. 53)

Blondels Lied

Spähend nach dem Eisengitter
Bei des Mondes hellem Schein,
Steht ein Minst’rel mit der Zither
Vor dem Schlosse Dürrenstein,
Stimmt sein Spiel zu sanfter Weise
Und beginnt sein Lied dazu,
Denn ein Ahnen sagt ihm leise:
„Suche treu, so findest du!“
König Richard, Held von Osten,
Sankst du wirklich schon hinab?
Muss dein Schwert im Meere rosten,
Oder deckt dich fern ein Grab?
Suchend dich auf allen Wegen,
Wallt dein Minstrel ohne Ruh’,
Denn ihm sagt ein leises Regen:
„Suche treu, so findest du!“
Hoffe, Richard, und vertraue,
Treue lenkt und leitet mich.
Und im fernen Heimatgaue
Betet Liebe still für dich.
Blondel folget deinen Bahnen,
Margot winkt dir sehnend zu,
Deinem Minstrel sagt ein Ahnen:
„Suche treu, so findest du!“
Horch, da tönt es leise, leise
Aus dem Burgverliess empor,
Eine wohlbekannte Weise
Klingt an Blondels lauschend Ohr.
Wie ein Freundesruf, ein trauter,
Schallt sein eigen Lied ihm zu,
Und sein Ahnen sagt ihm lauter:
„Suche treu, so findest du!“
Was er sang, das singt er wieder,
Wieder tönt es ihm zurück,
Süsses Echo klingt hernieder,
Keine Täuschung, sichres Glück!
Den er sucht auf seinen Bahnen,
Ach, sein König ruft ihm zu,
Nicht vergebens war sein Ahnen:
„Suche treu, so findest du!“
Heimwärts fliegt er mit der Kunde,
Da war Leid und Freude gross,
Fliegt zurück mit edler Runde,
Kauft den teuren König los.
Rings umstaunt vom frohen Kreise,
Stürzt der Held dem Sänger zu;
Gut bewährt hat sich die Weise:
„Suche treu, so findest du!“

Blondel's Song

Peering through the iron bars
In the bright moonlight,
A minstrel stands with his zither
Before Dürrenstein Castle,
He tunes it for a gentle air
And then begins his song,
For instinct tells him softly:
‘Seek in faith, and you shall find!’
King Richard, hero of the Orient,
Have you really perished?
Must your sword rust in the sea,
Or does a distant grave conceal you?
Seeking you on every path,
Your minstrel wanders without rest,
For instinct tells him softly:
‘Seek in faith, and you shall find!’
Hope, Richard, and have trust,
Loyalty leads and guides me,
And in your distant native land,
Love in silence prays for you.
Blondel follows your trail,
Margot yearns for your return;
Instinct tells your minstrel:
‘Seek in faith, and you shall find!’
Hark! The very faintest sound
Rises from the castle dungeon,
A familiar melody
Reaches Blondel’s listening ear.
Like a dear friend’s greeting,
His own song echoes back to him,
And instinct now more strongly tells him:
‘Seek in faith, and you shall find!’
What he sang, he sings again,
And it echoes back once more,
Resounding sweetly back again,
No delusion, certain joy!
Him he sought along the trail,
Ah, the king now calls to him,
His instinct was not in vain,
‘Seek in faith, and you shall find!’
Home he flies with the tidings,
Great was the sorrow and joy,
Back he flies with a noble escort,
And ransoms his beloved king.
All around stand astonished,
As the hero embraces his minstrel:
His refrain has at last proved true—
‘Seek in faith, and you shall find!’
Translations by Richard Stokes, author of The Book of Lieder (Faber, 2005)

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Robert Schumann was a German composer and influential music critic. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest composers of the Romantic era. Schumann left the study of law, intending to pursue a career as a virtuoso pianist. He had been assured by his teacher Friedrich Wieck that he could become the finest pianist in Europe, but a hand injury ended this dream. Schumann then focused his musical energies on composing.

Schumann's published compositions were written exclusively for the piano until 1840; he later composed works for piano and orchestra; many Lieder (songs for voice and piano); four symphonies; an opera; and other orchestral, choral, and chamber works. Works such as KinderszenenAlbum für die JugendBlumenstück, the Sonatas and Albumblätter are among his most famous. His writings about music appeared mostly in the Neue Zeitschrift für Musik (New Journal for Music), a Leipzig-based publication which he jointly founded.

In 1840, Schumann married Friedrich Wieck's daughter Clara, against the wishes of her father, following a long and acrimonious legal battle, which found in favor of Clara and Robert. Clara also composed music and had a considerable concert career as a pianist, the earnings from which formed a substantial part of her father's fortune.

Schumann suffered from a lifelong mental disorder, first manifesting itself in 1833 as a severe melancholic depressive episode, which recurred several times alternating with phases of ‘exaltation’ and increasingly also delusional ideas of being poisoned or threatened with metallic items. After a suicide attempt in 1854, Schumann was admitted to amental asylum, at his own request, in Endenich near Bonn. Diagnosed with "psychotic melancholia", Schumann died two years later in 1856 without having recovered from his mental illness.

Taken from wikipedia. To read the rest of the article, please click here.

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