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An eine Quelle

Language: German (Deutsch)

Du kleine grünumwachsne Quelle,
  An der ich Daphne jüngst gesehn!
Dein Wasser war so still! [so]1 helle!
  Und Daphne's Bild darin, so schön!
O, wenn sie sich noch mahl am Ufer sehen läßt,
So halte du ihr schönes Bild doch fest;
Ich schleiche heimlich [denn]2 mit naßen Augen hin,
  Dem [Bilde]3 meine Noth zu klagen;
Denn, wenn ich bey ihr selber bin,
[Denn]2, ach! [denn]2 kann ich ihr nichts sagen.

Translation(s): CAT DUT ENG FRE ITA

List of language codes

View original text (without footnotes)

Confirmed with ASMUS omnia sua SECUM portans, oder Sämmtliche Werke des Wandsbecker Bothen, I. und II. Theil. Beym Verfasser, und in Commißion bey Fr. Perthes in Hamburg. [1774], page 154; with ASMUS omnia sua SECUM portans, oder Sämmtliche Werke des Wandsbecker Bothen, Erster und zweiter Theil. Wandsbeck, 1774. Beym Verfasser, page 93; and with ASMVS omnia sua SECVM portans, oder Sämmtliche Werke des Wandsbecker Bothen, I. und II. Theil. Carlsruhe, bey Christian Gottlieb Schmieder. 1784, page 154.

First published in 1764 in a slightly different version in Tändeleyen und Erzählungen, see below.

1 Schubert: "und"
2 Claudius (Wandsbeck 1774 edition), and Kraus, Schubert: "dann"
3 Claudius (Carlsruhe, 1784 edition), and Kraus, Schubert: "Bild"

Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator] and Malcolm Wren [Guest Editor] 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):

  • CAT Catalan (Català) (Salvador Pila) , "A una font", copyright © 2018, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • DUT Dutch (Nederlands) [singable] (Lau Kanen) , "Tot een bron", copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ENG English (Emily Ezust) , "To a spring", copyright ©
  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "À une source", copyright © 2010, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Ferdinando Albeggiani) , "A una fonte", copyright © 2012, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Text added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.

Last modified: 2018-03-15 21:08:55
Line count: 10
Word count: 70

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To a spring

Language: English after the German (Deutsch)

Little spring, grown over with green,
I recently saw Daphne beside you!
Your water was so still and bright
and Daphne's face so fair within!
O if she should let herself be seen again by your side,
keep her fair image fast;
I will creep up secretly, with moist eyes,
and lament all my troubles to her image.
For when I am with her alone,
alas, I cannot say a thing!

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  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © by Emily Ezust

    Emily Ezust permits her translations to be reproduced without prior permission for printed (not online) programs to free-admission concerts only, provided the following credit is given:

    Translation copyright © by Emily Ezust,
    from the LiederNet Archive --

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Based on
  • a text in German (Deutsch) by Matthias Claudius (1740 - 1815), "An eine Quelle", written 1760, first published 1764 CAT DUT FRE ITA
      • This text was set to music by the following composer(s): Joseph Martin Kraus, Franz Peter Schubert. Go to the text.


Text added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.

Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:01:24
Line count: 10
Word count: 71