by Thomas Moore (1779 - 1852)
Translation © by Pierre Mathé

The harp that once through Tara's halls
Language: English 
Available translation(s): FRE
The harp that once through Tara's halls
The soul of music shed,
Now hangs as mute on Tara's walls,
As if that soul were fled.
So sleeps the pride of former days,
So glory's thrill is o'er,
And hearts, that once beat high for praise,
No feel that pulse no more.
No more to chiefs and ladies bright
The harp of Tara swells;
The chord alone, that breaks at night,
Its tale of ruin tells.
Thus Freedom now so seldom wakes,
The only throb she gives,
Is when some heart indignant breaks,
To show that still she lives.

V. Herbert sets stanza 1

Confirmed with Thomas Moore, A New Edition from the last London Edition, Boston: Lee and Shepard; New York: Lee, Shepard, & Dillingham, 1876.


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):

  • FRE French (Français) (Pierre Mathé) , title 1: "La harpe qui autrefois dans les salles de Tara", copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Robert Grady

Text added to the website: 2004-06-12 00:00:00
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:02:07
Line count: 16
Word count: 98

La harpe qui autrefois dans les salles de Tara
Language: French (Français)  after the English 
La harpe qui autrefois dans les salles de Tara
Distillait l'âme de la musique,
Est maintenant suspendue muette sur les murs de Tara,
Comme si cette âme s'était enfuie.
Ainsi dort la fierté des jours anciens,
Ainsi l'émotion de la gloire a passé,
Et les battements de cœurs nés des louanges,
Plus personne aujourd'hui ne les ressent.

Il n'y a plus ni chefs ni brillantes dames
Que la harpe de Tara puisse soulever ;
Seule la corde qui résonne la nuit
Dit le récit d'une ruine.
Ainsi la Liberté ne s'éveille maintenant que rarement,
Le seul battement qu'elle donne,
C'est lorsqu'un cœur indigné se brise,
Pour montrer qu'elle vit encore.


  • Translation from English to French (Français) copyright © 2014 by Pierre Mathé, (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: 2014-04-18 00:00:00
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:05:32
Line count: 16
Word count: 110