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Songs

Songs

Viola (1823) D786

Viola

Schneeglöcklein, o Schneeglöcklein,
In den Auen läutest du,
Läutest in dem stillen Hain,
Läute immer, läute zu, läute immer zu!
Denn du kündest frohe Zeit,
Frühling naht, der Bräutigam,
Kommt mit Sieg vom Winterstreit,
Dem er seine Eiswehr nahm.
Darum schwingt der goldne Stift,
Dass dein Silberhelm erschallt,
Und dein liebliches Gedüft
Leis’ wie Schmeichelruf entwallt:
Dass die Blumen in der Erd,
Steigen aus dem düstern Nest,
Und des Bräutigams sich wert
Schmücken zu dem Hochzeitsfest.
Schneeglöcklein, o Schneeglöcklein,
In den Auen läutest du,
Läutest in dem stillen Hain,
Läut’ die Blumen aus der Ruh’!
Du Viola, zartes Kind,
Hörst zuerst den Wonnelaut,
Und sie stehet auf geschwind,
Schmücket sorglich sich als Braut,
Hüllet sich in’s grüne Kleid,
Nimmt den Mantel sammetblau,
Nimmt das güldene Geschmeid,
Und den Brilliantentau.
Eilt dann fort mit mächt’gem Schritt,
Nur den Freund im treuen Sinn,
Ganz von Liebesglück durchglüht,
Sieht nicht her und sieht nicht hin.
Doch ein ängstliches Gefühl
Ihre kleine Brust durchwalkt,
Denn es ist noch rings so still,
Und die Lüfte weh’n so kalt.
Und sie hemmt den schnellen Lauf,
Schon bestrahlt von Sonnenschein,
Doch mit Schrecken blickt sie auf,
Denn sie stehet ganz allein.
Schwestern nicht, nicht Bräutigam
Zugedrungen! und verschmäht!
Da durchschauert sie die Scham,
Fliehet wie vom Sturm geweht,
Fliehet an den fernsten Ort,
Wo sie Gras und Schatten deckt,
Späht und lauschet immerfort,
Ob was rauschet und sich regt.
Und gekränket und getäuscht
Sitzet sie und schluchzt und weint,
Von der tiefsten Angst zerfleischt,
Ob kein Nahender erscheint.
Schneeglöcklein, o Schneeglöcklein,
In den Auen läutest du,
Läutest in dem stillen Hain,
Läut die Schwestern ihr herzu!
Rose nahet, Lilie schwankt,
Tulp’ und Hyazinthe schwellt,
Windling kommt daher gerankt,
Und Narciss’ hat sich gesellt.
Da der Frühling nun erscheint,
Und das frohe Fest beginnt,
Sieht er alle, die vereint,
Und vermisst sein liebstes Kind.
Alle schickt er suchend fort,
Um die eine, die ihm wert,
Und sie kommen an den Ort,
Wo sie einsam sich verzehrt.
Doch es sitzt das liebe Kind
Stumm und bleich, das Haupt gebückt,
Ach! der Lieb’ und Sehnsucht Schmerz
Hat die Zärtliche erdrückt.
Schneeglöcklein, o Schneeglöcklein,
In den Auen läutest du,
Läutest in dem stillen Hain,
Läut Viola sanfte Ruh’!

Violet

Snowdrop, snowdrop,
you ring through the meadows,
you ring in the silent grove.
Ring on, ring on for ever!
For you herald a time of joy;
spring approaches, the bridegroom,
victorious from his struggle with winter,
from whom he wrested his icy weapon.
So your golden rod swings
that your silver bell shall resound,
and your sweet fragrance wafts gently away,
like an enticing call:
So that the flowers in the earth
rise from their gloomy nests,
and to prove worthy of the bridegroom
adorn themselves for the wedding feast.
Snowdrop, snowdrop,
you ring through the meadows,
you ring in the silent grove,
ring the flowers from their sleep!
Violet, tender child,
is the first to hear the joyful sound;
she rises quickly,
and adorns herself carefully as a bride.
She wraps herself in a green gown,
takes a velvety blue mantle,
her golden jewels
and her dewy diamonds.
Then she hastens forth with powerful gait,
with thoughts only of her beloved in her faithful
heart, inflamed with ardent love,
looking neither this way nor that.
But a feeling of apprehension
troubles her tiny breast,
for all around it is still so quiet,
and the winds blow so cold.
She checks her rapid course.
Already the sun shines on her,
but she looks up in terror,
for she is quite alone.
No sisters! No bridegroom!
She has been too pressing! She has been rejected!
Then she shudders with shame
and flees, as if swept away by the storm.
She flees to the remotest spot,
where grass and shade conceal her;
she constantly peers and listens
to see if anything rustles or stirs.
Hurt and disappointed
she sits sobbing and weeping,
tormented by the profound fear
that no one will appear.
Snowdrop, snowdrop,
you ring through the meadows,
you ring in the silent grove;
call her sisters to her.
The rose approaches, the lily sways,
the tulip and hyacinth swell;
the bindweed trails along,
and the narcissus joins them.
And now, as spring appears
and the happy festival begins,
he sees them all united,
but misses his dearest child.
He sends them all off to search
for the one he cherishes,
and they come to the place
where she languishes alone.
But the sweet creature sits there
dumb and pale, her head bowed;
alas, the pain of love and longing
has crushed the tender one.
Snowdrop, snowdrop,
you ring through the meadows,
you ring in the silent grove;
ring for Violet’s sweet repose!
Translations by Richard Wigmore first published by Gollancz and reprinted in the Hyperion Schubert Song Edition

Composer

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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Poet

Franz Adolf Friedrich Schober, since 1801 von Schobe, was an Austrian poet, librettist, lithographer, actor in Breslau and Legationsrat in Weimar.

Schober was born to Austrian parents in Sweden. Educated in the Schnepfenthal Salzmann School, Akademisches Gymnasium (Vienna) and Kremsmünster Abbey, he returned to Vienna, where he began to study philosophy and met the composer Franz Schubert, his friends Johann Mayrhofer, Joseph von Spaun and the painters Leopold Kupelwieser and Moritz von Schwind. Between 1823 and 1825, Schober was an actor at the theatre in Breslau under the pseudonym "Torupson". In the 1840s, Schober was in close contact with Franz Liszt. In 1856 he married the author Thekla von Gumpert; afterwards he lived in Budapest, Munich and Dresden.

Schober wrote lyric poetry and in 1821 the libretto for Schubert's opera Alfonso und Estrella.

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