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Vision of Belshazzar

Language: English

The King was on his throne, 
  The Satraps throng'd the hall: 
A thousand bright lamps shone 
  O'er that high festival. 
A thousand cups of gold, 
  In Judah deem'd divine -- 
Jehovah's vessels hold 
  The godless Heathen's wine! 
In that same hour and hall, 
  The fingers of a hand 
Came forth against the wall, 
  And wrote as if on sand: 
The fingers of a man; -- 
  A solitary hand 
Along the letters ran, 
  And traced them like a wand. 

The monarch saw, and shook, 
  And bade no more rejoice; 
All bloodless wax'd his look 
  And tremulous his voice. 
"Let the men of lore appear, 
  The wisest of the earth, 
And expound the words of fear, 
  Which mar our royal mirth."
Chaldea's seers are good,
  But here they have no skill; 
And the unknown letters stood 
  Untold and awful still. 
And Babel's men of age 
  Are wise and deep in lore; 
But now they were not sage, 
  They saw -- but knew no more. 

A captive in the land, 
  A stranger and a youth,
He heard the king's command, 
  He saw that writing's truth.
The lamps around were bright, 
  The prophecy in view; 
He read it on that night, -- 
  The morrow proved it true. 
"Belshazzar's grave is made, 
  His kingdom pass'd away,
He, in the balance weigh'd, 
  Is light and worthless clay;
The shroud his robe of state, 
  His canopy the stone:
The Mede is at his gate! 
  The Persian on his throne!"


Translation(s): FRE GER

List of language codes

See also Belshazzar's Feast (Bible / Walton)

Submitted by Emily Ezust [Administrator]

Authorship


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

Settings in other languages:

Other available translations, adaptations, and transliterations (if applicable):


Text added to the website: 2003-11-13.
Last modified: 2017-10-11 12:39:24
Line count: 48
Word count: 238

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Vision de Balthazar

Language: French (Français) after the English

Le roi était sur son trône,
les satrapes encombraient la salle:
mille flambeaux étincelans éclairaient
cette magnifique fête.
Mille coupes d'or,
vouées naguère au culte divin
chez le peuple de Juda; -- 
oui, les vases sacrés de Jéhovah
s'emplissaient de vin
pour les Gentils, contempteurs de Dieu.

Soudain, dans cette même salle,
une main appliqua
ses doigts sur le mur,
et se mit à écrire comme sur le sable;
c'étaient les doigts d'un homme; -- 
une main solitaire parcourait les lettres,
et, comme une baguette,
en suivait tous les traits.

A cette vue, le monarque frémit,
et imposa fin à la joie.
Le sang se retira de ses joues,
et sa voix devint tremblante. -- 
«Viennent les hommes de la science,
les sages de la terre;
qu'ils expliquent ces mots de terreur
qui troublent nos royaux plaisirs.»

Les prophètes de la Chaldée sont habiles;
mais ici leur talent est nul:
inconnues leur étaient ces lettres,
qui restaient toujours là, inexplicables et terribles.
Les vieillards de Babylone
sont sages et profonds en savoir;
mais alors échoua leur sagesse:
ils virent ces lettres, -- et n'en surent pas davantage.

Un captif, jeune homme
transplanté sur ce sol étranger; -- 
entendit l'ordre du roi,
et vit le vrai sens des caractères écrits sur le mur.
Les lumières brillaient tout alentour;
la prophétie frappait tous les regards:
il la lut, -- 
et le jour qui suivit cette nuit en prouva la vérité.

«Balthazar a sa tombe prête:
son royaume n'est plus.
Balthazar, pesé dans la balance,
n'est qu'argile indigne et légère.
Il aura le linceul pour manteau royal,
et pour dais la pierre du sépulcre.
Le Mède est à la porte du palais !
le Perse, sur le trône !»


Submitted by Guy Laffaille [Guest Editor]

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)

    [ None yet in the database ]


Text added to the website: 2012-01-15.
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:04:45
Line count: 50
Word count: 280