by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749 - 1832)
Translation © by Sharon Krebs

Zum neuen Jahr
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): ENG
Zwischen dem Alten,
Zwischen dem Neuen,
Hier uns zu freuen
Schenkt uns das Glück,
Und das Vergangne
Heißt mit Vertrauen
Vorwärts zu schauen,
Schauen zurück.

Stunden der Plage,
Leider, sie schieden
Treue von Leiden,
Liebe von Lust;
Bessere Tage
Sammeln uns wieder,
Heitere Lieder
Stärken die Brust.

Leiden und Freuden,
Jener verschwundnen,
Sind die Verbundnen
Fröhlich gedenk.
O des Geschickes
Seltsamer Windung!
Alte Verbindung,
Neues Geschenk!

Dank es dem regen
Wogenden Glücke,
Dankt dem Geschicke
Männiglich Gut!
Freut euch des Wechsels
Heiterer Triebe,
Offener Liebe,
Heimlicher Glut!

Andere schauen
Deckende Falten
Über dem Alten
Traurig und scheu;
Aber uns leuchtet
Freundliche Treue;
Seht, das Neue
Findet uns neu.

So wie im Tanze
Bald sich verschwindet,
Wieder sich findet
Liebendes Paar;
So durch des Lebens
Wirrende Beugung
Führe die Neigung
Uns in das Jahr.


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, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • ENG English (Sharon Krebs) , title 1: "For the new year", copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

Text added to the website: 2007-11-21 00:00:00
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:02:30
Line count: 48
Word count: 133

For the new year
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
Between the old,
Between the new,
Here to be joyful
Happiness gives us [the chance],
And the past
Tells us with confidence
To look forward,
To look back.
Hours of toil,
Alas, they separate
Faithfulness from suffering,
Love from joy;
Better days
Gather us again,
Merry songs
Strengthen the bosom.
Sorrows and joys
Are allies of
Those vanished [hours];
Remember them joyfully.
Oh fate's
Curious twists!
Old affiliation,
New gift!
Give thanks to the stirring
Billowing happiness,
Give thanks to fate
For [its] manifold goodness!
Rejoice in the fluctuation
Of merry urges,
[Of] freely-declared love,
[Of] secret fervour!
Others see
Covering folds
Over the old,
Sadly and shyly;
But for us there shines
Friendly faithfulness;
See, the new
Finds us renewed.
As a loving couple
In a dance
Soon disappears
And finds itself again;
Thus through life's
Tumultuous diffraction
May inclination lead
Us into the [new] year.


  • 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


Text added to the website: 2014-01-16 00:00:00
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:05:28
Line count: 48
Word count: 147