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So schlafe nun, du Kleine!

Language: German (Deutsch)

So schlafe nun, du Kleine!
  Was weinest du?
Sanft ist im Mondenscheine
  Und süß die Ruh.

Auch kommt der Schlaf geschwinder
  Und sonder Müh;
Der Mond freut sich der Kinder
  Und liebet sie.

Er liebt zwar auch die Knaben,
  Doch Mädchen mehr,
Gießt freundlich schöne Gaben
  Von oben her,

Auf sie aus, wenn sie saugen,
  Recht wunderbar;
Schenkt ihnen blaue Augen
  Und blondes Haar.

Alt ist er wie ein Rabe,
  Sieht manches Land;
Mein Vater hat als Knabe
  Ihn schon gekannt.

Und bald nach ihren Wochen
  Hat Mutter mal
Mit ihm von mir gesprochen:
  Sie saß im Tal.

In einer Abendstunde,
  Den Busen bloß
Ich lag mit offnem Munde
  In ihrem Schoß.

Sie sah mich an, für Freude
  Ein Tränchen lief,
Der Mond beschien uns beide,
  Ich lag und schlief;

Da sprach sie: "Mond, o! scheine,
  Ich hab' sie lieb,
Schein' Glück für meine Kleine!"
  Ihr Auge blieb

Noch lang am Monde kleben
  Und flehte mehr.
Der Mond fing an zu beben,
  Als hörte er.

Und denkt nur immer wieder
  An diesen Blick,
Und scheint von hoch hernieder
 Mir lauter Glück.

Er schien mir unterm Kranze
  Ins Brautgesicht.
Und bei dem Ehrentanze;
  Du warst noch nicht.

Translation(s): ENG

List of language codes

H. Eisler sets stanzas 1-2
J. Kraus sets stanzas 1-4 in (at least) one setting - see below for more information

About the headline (FAQ)

Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]


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):

  • ENG English (Sharon Krebs) , "So sleep now, little one [girl]", copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

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

Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:01:24

Line count: 48
Word count: 196

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So sleep now, little one [girl]

Language: English after the German (Deutsch)

So sleep now, little one [girl]!
What are you crying for?
Slumber is soft and sweet
in the moonlight.

Also, sleep comes more quickly
and without effort [in moonlight];
the moon delights in children
and loves them.

'Tis true, he1 loves the boys too,
but [he loves] the girls more,
[and he] amiably pours lovely gifts
from above,

down upon them, when they suckle,
quite wonderfully;
gives them blue eyes
and blond hair.

He is as old as a raven,
Sees many a land;
When my father was a boy
He already knew him.

And soon after her lying-in
my mother once
Talked to him about me:
she sat in the valley.

One evening hour,
her bosom bare
I lay with open mouth
upon her lap.

She gazed at me, for joy
she shed a tear,
the moon shone down upon us both,
I lay asleep;

Then she said: "Moon, o shine,
I love her,
Shine joy [down] for my little one!"
Her eye remained

Fixed on the moon for a long time
And continued to entreat. 
The moon began to tremble,
As if he heard.

And again and again, he thinks
of this gaze,
And from on high he shines down
upon me pure joy.

He shone into my face as a bride,
beneath my [bridal]-wreath. 
And during the celebratory wedding dance;
You weren't alive then yet.

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View original text (without footnotes)
1 The moon is masculine in German.


  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © 2008 by Sharon Krebs, (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 Matthias Claudius (1740 - 1815), "Ein Wiegenlied bei Mondschein zu singen"
      • This text was set to music by the following composer(s): Hanns Eisler, Hermann Heiss, Joseph Martin Kraus, Erkki Gustaf Melartin, Johann Friedrich Reichardt, Hermann Reutter, Othmar Schoeck. Go to the text.


Text added to the website: 2008-07-30 00:00:00.

Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:02:49

Line count: 48
Word count: 228