by Detlev von Liliencron (1844 - 1909)
Translation © by Emily Ezust

Ich liebe dich
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): CAT DUT ENG FRE ITA SPA
Vier adlige Rosse
Voran unserm Wagen,
Wir wohnen im Schlosse,
In stolzem Behagen.
Die Frühlichterwellen
Und nächtens der Blitz,
Was all' sie erhellen,
Ist unser Besitz.

Und irrst du verlassen,
Verbannt durch die Lande:
Mit dir durch die Gassen
In Armut und Schande!
Es bluten die Hände,
Die Füße sind wund,
Vier trostlose Wände,
Es kennt uns kein Hund.

Steht silberbeschlagen
Dein Sarg am [Altare]1,
Sie sollen mich tragen
Zu dir auf die [Bahre]2.
Und fern auf der Haide,
Und stirbst du in Not:
Den Dolch aus der Scheide,
Dir nach in den Tod!

View original text (without footnotes)

Confirmed with Detlev von Liliencron, Ausgewählte Gedichte, Zweites Tausend, Berlin: Schuster & Loeffler, 1896, pages 159-160.

1 Strauss: "Altar"
2 Strauss: "Bahr' "


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):

  • CAT Catalan (Català) (Salvador Pila) , "T'estimo", copyright © 2019, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • DUT Dutch (Nederlands) [singable] (Lau Kanen) , "Ik houd van jou", copyright © 2019, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ENG English (Emily Ezust) , "I love you", copyright ©
  • ENG English [singable] (John Bernhoff) , "I love but thee"
  • FRE French (Français) (Pierre Mathé) , "Je t'aime", copyright © 2012, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Amelia Maria Imbarrato) , "Io ti amo", copyright © 2005, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • SPA Spanish (Español) (Alfredo García) , "Te amo", copyright © 2004, (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 between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 24
Word count: 94

I love you
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
Four noble horses
for our carriage,
we live in the castle
in proud comfort.
The early brightness
and the lightning at night -
everything that they shed light upon
belongs to us.

Although you wander forsaken,
an exile, through the world,
I am with you in the streets
in poverty and shame!
Our hands will bleed,
our feet will ache,
the four walls will be without comfort,
and no dog will know us.

If, fitted with silver,
your coffin will stand at the altar,
they shall bear me as well
on the bier to you.
And if, far away on the heath,
you die in anguish,
I shall draw my dagger from its sheath
and follow you in death!


  • 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 --

    For any other purpose, please write to the e-mail address below to request permission and discuss possible fees.

Based on


This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 24
Word count: 119