by Rudolph Baumbach (1840 - 1905)
Translation © by Sharon Krebs

Die Zither lockt, die Geige klingt
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): ENG
Die Zither lockt, die Geige klingt,
Juchhe, im Dorf ist Tanz! 
Der Michel seine Lise schwingt,
Die Grete schwingt der Hans.
  Ein Mädel flink zu drehen 
  Ist gar ein gutes Ding.
  Ich mag nicht müssig stehen 
  Und springe in den Ring.

Des reichen Schulzen Katherein
Ist hochgemuth und keck;
Des Müllers rundes Töchterlein
Ist gar ein lieber Schneck.
  Doch von den Dirnen allen,
  Die auf dem Plane sind,
  Will mir zumeist gefallen
  Des Geigers braunes Kind.

Den Silberling nimm, Alter, hin
Und spiel' dein schönstes Stück;
Gieb mir die Hand, Zigeunerin,
Ihr andern, weicht zurück! 
  Nun jubelt auf ihr Geigen,
  Ihr Pfeifen klingt und gellt!
  Denk', Mädel, uns [zwei beiden
  Gehört die ganze Welt.]1

Schau' nicht so ängstlich vor dich hin,
Schlag' auf die Augen hell! 
Ich bin, wie du Landfahrerin,
Ein fahrender Gesell.
  Zu mein' und deiner Freude
  Der Mai die Rosen schuf,
  Und ich und du, wir beide,
  Sind besser als unser Ruf.

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View original text (without footnotes)

Confirmed with Rudolf Baumbach, Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen, Leipzig: Verlag von A. G. Liebeskind, 1878, pages 16-17.

1 In a later edition (1885), this was changed to " zu eigen / Ist heut die ganze Welt."


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) , "The zither entices, the violin rings out", copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Research team for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator] , Sharon Krebs [Guest Editor]

This text was added to the website: 2009-09-29
Line count: 32
Word count: 155

The zither entices, the violin rings out
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
The zither entices, the violin rings out,
Hurray, there's a dance in the town!
Michel swings his Lise about,
Grete is swung about by Hans.
 To twirl a girl about quickly
 Is a very good thing.
 I do not like to stand about doing nothing
 And I leap into the ring.

Katherine, the daughter of the rich sheriff
Is high-spirited and jaunty;
The rotund daughter of the miller
Is an utter darling.
 But of all the maids
 Who are up for grabs
 The one that pleases me most
 Is the dark-skinned child of the fiddler.

Take, old man, this coin of silver
And play your most beautiful piece;
Give me your hand, gypsy girl,
All you others, step back!
 Now rejoice, you violins,
 You pipes sound and ring out!
 Think maiden, [the whole world
 Belongs to the two of us.]1

Do not look so anxious,
Open your eyes brightly!
As you are a nomad, so am I
A wandering chap.
 For my and your happiness
 [The month of] May created roses,
 And I and you, we two,
 Are better than our reputation.

View original text (without footnotes)
English song title: (Hirsch, Smolian): Dancing song
1 In a later edition (1885), this was changed to "today / The whole world belongs to us!"


  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © 2014 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.

Based on:


This text was added to the website: 2014-01-03
Line count: 32
Word count: 182