by Robert Burns (1759 - 1796)
Translation by Josef Václav Sládek (1845 - 1912)

How cruel are the parents
Language: English 
Available translation(s): FRE
How cruel are the parents
    Who riches only prize,
And to the wealthy booby
    Poor woman sacrifice !
Meanwhile the hapless daughter
    Has but a choice of strife :
To shun a tyrant father's hate,
    Become a wretched wife !

The rav'ning hawk pursuing,
    The trembling dove thus flies :
To shun [impending]1 ruin
    A while her pinions tries;
'Till of escape despairing,
    No shelter or retreat,
She trusts the ruthless falconer,
    And drops beneath his feet.

About the headline (FAQ)

View original text (without footnotes)
Confirmed with The Complete Poetical Works of Robert Burns, Cambridge edition, Boston and New York, Houghton Mifflin Company, 1897, page 281.

1 Beethoven: "impelling" (?)

Authorship

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

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

  • CZE Czech (Čeština) (Josef Václav Sládek) , "Ó, rodičové krutí"
  • FRE French (Français) (Pierre Mathé) , "Comme les parents sont cruels", copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Georg Pertz) , "Kalt ist der Eltern Busen"


Researcher for this text: Ferdinando Albeggiani
Ó, rodičové krutí
Language: Czech (Čeština)  after the English 
Ó, rodičové krutí,
   jež mámí zlata zjev,
že bohatému hlupci
   svou obětují krev,
že ubohé jich dceři
   v tom boji zbývá jen
buď otcův hněv, aneb se stát
   tou nejbídnější z žen.

Tak chvějící se holub,
   když stíhán sokolem,
před hrozící mu zkázou
   se vznáší nad polem;
až nenalézá spásy
   a lovci krutému
v svém důvěřuje zoufání
   a k nohám padne mu.

Authorship

Based on

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

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Researcher for this text: Andrew Schneider [Guest Editor]