The song of the Loreley

In 1824 Heinrich Heine wrote the poem „The Lore-Ley“, which was set to music in 1837 by Friedrich Silcher and is today one of the most famous Rhine songs.

Chanted by Jasmin Hillgruber - Download

I cannot determine the meaning
Of sorrow that fills my breast:
A fable of old, through it streaming,
Allows my mind no rest.

The air is cool in the gloaming
And gently flows the Rhine.
The crest of the mountain is gleaming
In fading rays of sunshine.

The loveliest maiden is sitting
Up there, so wondrously fair;
Her golden jewelry is glist'ning;
She combs her golden hair.

She combs with a gilded comb, preening,
And sings a song, passing time.
It has a most wondrous, appealing
And pow'rful melodic rhyme.

The boatman aboard his small skiff, -
Enraptured with a wild ache,
Has no eye for the jagged cliff, -
His thoughts on the heights fear forsake.

I think that the waves will devour
Both boat and man, by and by,
And that, with her dulcet-voiced power
Was done by the Loreley.

Translator: Frank Petersohn

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Source: Photo Loreley Felix Koenig, Photo Marksburg Braubach Touristik © 2006 go_on Software GmbH
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