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Songs

Gruppe aus dem Tartarus

by Franz Schubert

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Text & Translation

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Gruppe aus dem Tartarus
German source: Friedrich von Schiller

Horch – wie Murmeln des empörten Meeres,
Wie durch hohler Felsen Becken weint ein Bach,
Stöhnt dort dumpfigtief ein schweres – leeres,
Qualerpresstes Ach!


Schmerz verzerret
Ihr Gesicht – Verzweiflung sperret
Ihren Rachen fluchend auf.
Hohl sind ihre Augen – ihre Blicke
Spähen bang nach des Cocytus Brücke,
Folgen tränend seinem Trauerlauf.


Fragen sich einander ängstlich leise,
Ob noch nicht Vollendung sei?
Ewigkeit schwingt über ihnen Kreise,
Bricht die Sense des Saturns entzwei.

Group from Hades
English translation © Richard Wigmore

Hark! Like the angry murmuring of the sea,
or a brook sobbing through pools in hollow rocks,
from the depths arises a muffled groan,
heavy, empty and tormented!

Pain distorts
their faces – in despair
their mouths open wide, cursing.
Their eyes are hollow – their frightened gaze
strains towards Cocytus’ bridge,
following as they weep that river’s mournful course.

Anxiously, softly, they ask one another
if the end is yet nigh.
Eternity sweeps in circles above them,
breaking Saturn’s scythe in two.

Translations by Richard Wigmore first published by Gollancz and reprinted in the Hyperion Schubert Song Edition

Gruppe aus dem Tartarus
German source: Friedrich von Schiller

Group from Hades
English source: Richard Wigmore

Horch – wie Murmeln des empörten Meeres,
Hark! Like the angry murmuring of the sea,
Wie durch hohler Felsen Becken weint ein Bach,
or a brook sobbing through pools in hollow rocks,
Stöhnt dort dumpfigtief ein schweres – leeres,
from the depths arises a muffled groan,
Qualerpresstes Ach!
heavy, empty and tormented!


Pain distorts
Schmerz verzerret
their faces – in despair
Ihr Gesicht – Verzweiflung sperret
their mouths open wide, cursing.
Ihren Rachen fluchend auf.
Their eyes are hollow – their frightened gaze
Hohl sind ihre Augen – ihre Blicke
strains towards Cocytus’ bridge,
Spähen bang nach des Cocytus Brücke,
following as they weep that river’s mournful course.
Folgen tränend seinem Trauerlauf.


Anxiously, softly, they ask one another
Fragen sich einander ängstlich leise,
if the end is yet nigh.
Ob noch nicht Vollendung sei?
Eternity sweeps in circles above them,
Ewigkeit schwingt über ihnen Kreise,
breaking Saturn’s scythe in two.
Bricht die Sense des Saturns entzwei.

Composer

Franz Schubert

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…

Poet

Friedrich von Schiller

Johann Christoph Friedrich von Schiller was a German poet, philosopher, physician, historian, and playwright. During the last seventeen years of his life (1788–1805), Schiller struck up a productive, if complicated, friendship with the already…

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