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Sokrates und Alcibiades (1963)

Sokrates und Alcibiades

"Warum huldigest du, heiliger Sokrates,
Diesem Jünglinge stets? kennst du Größers nicht?
Warum siehet mit Liebe,
Wie auf Götter, dein Aug' auf ihn?"
Wer das Tiefste gedacht, liebt das Lebendigste,
Hohe Jugend versteht, wer in die Welt geblickt,
Und es neigen die Weisen
Oft am Ende zu Schönem sich.

Sokrates und Alcibiades

"Why, holy Socrates, do you always pay homage
To this young man? Are not greater things
known to you?
Why do you look upon him with love,
As you would look upon gods?"
He who has pondered deepest, loves what is
most alive,
He who has seen the world, understands
true virtue,
And in the end the wise
Will often yield to Beauty.

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Edward Benjamin Britten, Baron Britten (22 November 1913 – 4 December 1976) was an English composer, conductor and pianist. He was a central figure of 20th-century British classical music, with a range of works including opera, other vocal music, orchestral and chamber pieces. His best-known works include the opera Peter Grimes (1945), the War Requiem (1962) and the orchestral showpiece The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (1945).

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Johann Christian Friedrich Hölderlin (20 March 1770 – 7 June 1843) was a German poet and philosopher. Described by Norbert von Hellingrath as "the most German of Germans", Hölderlin was a key figure of German Romanticism. Particularly due to his early association with and philosophical influence on Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel and Friedrich Wilhelm Joseph Schelling, he was also an important thinker in the development of German Idealism. You can read more about his life and some of his poetry here. You can read a lot of his work here in the original German.

Hölderlin's poetry has inspired many composers, generating vocal music and instrumental music. One of the earliest settings of Hölderlin's poetry is Schicksalslied by Johannes Brahms, based on Hyperions Schicksalslied. Other composers of Hölderlin settings include Peter Cornelius, Hans Pfitzner, Richard Strauss , Max Reger, and Benjamin Britten, to name just a few. 

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