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Am Seegestad’, in lauen Vollmondnächten (1823)

Am Seegestad’, in lauen Vollmondnächten

Am Seegestad’, in lauen Vollmondnächten,
Denk ich nur dich!
Zu deines Namens goldnem Zug verflechten
Die Sterne sich.
Die Wildnis glänzt in ungewohnter Helle,
Von dir erfüllt;
Auf jedes Blatt in jede Schattenquelle
Malt sich dein holdes Bild.
Am Hüttchen dort bekränzt’ ich dir, umflossen
Von Abendglut,
Mit Immergrün und jungen Frühlingssprossen
Den Halmenhut.
Ihr schmelzend Mailied weinte Philomele
Im Uferhain;
Da fleht’ ich dir, im Blick die ganze Seele:
Gedenke mein!

By the lake shore, on warm moonlit nights

By the lake shore, on warm moonlit nights,
I think only of you!
The stars intertwine
To spell your name in gold.
The wilderness gleams unwontedly bright,
Filled with you;
On every leaf, in every shady stream
Your lovely image is painted.
There by the little hut
In the evening glow
I wound a wreath of evergreens and fresh spring flowers
Round your straw bonnet.
Philomel wept her melting May song
In the grove by the shore;
There I begged you, my entire soul in my gaze:
Remember me!

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Composer

Jakob Ludwig Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy (3 February 1809 – 4 November 1847), brother of Fanny Mendelssohn and grandson of Haskalah and Enlightenment philosopher Moses Mendelssohn, was a German composer, pianist, organist and conductor of the early Romantic period. Mendelssohn's compositions include symphonies, concertos, piano music and chamber music. 

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Poet

Friedrich von Matthisson was a German poet, an early member of the German Romantic movement. His best known poem is probably Adelaide, which was set to music by Beethoven.

He was born at Hohendodeleben near Magdeburg, the son of the village pastor, on the 23rd of January 1761. After studying theology and philology at the university of Halle, he was appointed in 1781 master at the classical school Philanthropinum in Dessau. This once famous seminary was, however, then rapidly decaying in public favor, and in 1784 Matthisson was glad to accept a travelling tutorship. He lived for two years with the Swiss author Bonstetten at Nyon on Lake Geneva.

In 1794 he was appointed reader and traveling companion to Princess Louisa of Anhalt-Dessau (wife of Leopold III, Duke of Anhalt-Dessau). They visited Switzerland, Tyrol, and Italy. For a time, they were joined in their travels by Danish author and salonist Friederike Brun. After Princess Louisa's death in 1811, he entered the service of the king of Württemberg, was ennobled, created counselor of legation, appointed intendant of the court theatre and chief librarian of the royal library at Stuttgart. He resided for a time in Italy. In 1828 he retired and settled at Wörlitz near Dessau, where he died on the 12th of March 1831.

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