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Der Schnee zerrinnt

Language: German (Deutsch)

Der Schnee zerrinnt,
Der Mai beginnt,
[Die]1 Blüten keimen 
[Auf]2 Gartenbäumen,
Und Vogelschall
Tönt überall.

Pflückt einen Kranz,
Und haltet Tanz
Auf grünen Auen, 
Ihr schönen Frauen, 
Wo [junge]3 Main 
Uns Kühlung streun.

Wer weiß, wie bald
Die Klocke schallt,
Da wir des Maien 
Uns nicht mehr freuen:
Wer weiß, wie bald
Die Klocke schallt!

Drum werdet froh! 
Gott will es so,
Der uns dies Leben
Zur Lust gegeben! 
Genießt der Zeit, 
Die Gott verleiht!

Translation(s): ENG FRE ITA

List of language codes

F. Schubert sets stanzas 1, 3, 4 in (at least) one setting - see below for more information

About the headline (FAQ)

View original text (without footnotes)

Confirmed with Gedichte von Ludewig Heinrich Christoph Hölty. Besorgt durch seine Freunde Friederich Leopold Grafen zu Stolberg und Johann Heinrich Voß. Hamburg, bei Carl Ernst Bohn. 1783, pages 65-66; and with Gedichte von Ludewig Heinrich Christoph Hölty. Neu besorgt und vermehrt von Johann Heinrich Voss. Hamburg, bei Carl Ernst Bohn. 1804, pages 166-167.

This is Hölty's poem in its version posthumously printed in the editions edited by Voß. Hölty's original version differs in several verses (see below).

Note: Modern spelling would change "Klocke" to "Glocke".

1 Mendelssohn: "Und"
2 Hölty (1804 edition), and Schubert: "Den"
3 Mendelssohn: "grüne"

Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator] and Peter Rastl [Guest Editor]


Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)

Another version of this text exists in the database.

Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • ENG English (Malcolm Wren) , copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Pierre Mathé) , copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Ferdinando Albeggiani) , "Si scioglie la neve", copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Text added to the website: 2010-03-27.
Last modified: 2018-01-14 07:55:06
Line count: 24
Word count: 75

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The snow is melting

Language: English after the German (Deutsch)

The snow is melting,
May is beginning,
The blossoms are sprouting
On the trees in the garden
And the sound of birds
Can be heard everywhere.

Pluck a garland
And hold a dance
On the green meadow
You beautiful women,
Where young May blossoms
Strew coolness over us.

Who knows how soon
The bell will toll!
Then in May we 
Shall no longer be able to have fun.
Who knows how soon
The bell will toll!

So, be happy!
God wills it thus,
He who gave us this life,
A life given to us for enjoyment!
Enjoy the time
That God has made available!

IMPORTANT NOTE: The material directly above is protected by copyright and appears here by special permission. If you wish to copy it and distribute it, you must obtain permission or you will be breaking the law. Once you have permission, you must give credit to the author and display the copyright symbol ©. Copyright infringement is a criminal offense under international law.

About the headline (FAQ)

Translation of title "Mailied" = "May song"


  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © 2016 by Malcolm Wren, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you may ask the copyright-holder(s) directly or ask us; we are authorized to grant permission on their behalf. Please provide the translator's name when contacting us.


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Based on
  • a text in German (Deutsch) by Ludwig Heinrich Christoph Hölty (1748 - 1776), "Mailied", written 1773, Göttinger Musenalmanach 1776, page 24, first published 1776 FRE ITA
      • This text was set to music by the following composer(s): Gustav Blasser, Eduard August Grell, Victor Hollaender, Carl Adolf Lorenz, Dr., Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy, Julius P. Peiser, Adolf Reichel, Max Renner, Franz Peter Schubert. Go to the text.


Text added to the website: 2016-09-11.
Last modified: 2017-05-17 19:53:41
Line count: 24
Word count: 104