Translation © by Malcolm Wren

Idens Nachtgesang
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): CAT DUT ENG ENG FRE
Vernimm es, Nacht, was Ida dir vertrauet,
Die satt des Tags, in deine Arme flieh't.
Ihr Sterne, die ihr hold und liebend auf mich schauet,
Vernehmt süßlauschend Idens Lied.

Den ich geahnt in liebvollen Stunden,
Dem sehnsuchtkrank mein Herz entgegen schlug,
O Nacht, o Sterne, hörts, ich habe ihn gefunden,
Deß Bild ich längst im Busen trug.

Um seine Wiege lächelten die Musen,
Urania kos't' ihm auf dem keuschen Schooß,
Die Schönheit tränket' ihn an ihrem Nektarbusen,
Und jede Charis zog ihn groß.

In seinen Augen blitzt promethisch Feuer.
Gerecht entbrennt sein Herz in Lieb und Zorn.
Es lüpft dem Schmachtenden die Wahrheit ihren Schleyer;
Ihm sprudelt Phöbus heil'ger Born.

Freund, du bist mein, nicht für die kurze Reise,
Die durch das Labyrinth des Lebens führt;
Sieh, sieh die Sphären dort, die ewig schönen Kreise,
Wo fester unser Band sich schnürt.

Freund, ich bin dein, nicht für den Sand der Zeiten,
Der schnellversiegend Chronos Uhr entfleußt,
Dein für den Riesenstrom heilvoller Ewigkeiten,
Der aus des Ew'gen Urne scheußt.

Confirmed with L.T.Kosegarten's Poesieen, Neueste Auflage, Zweyter Band, Berlin 1803, pages 112-113. This is the source used by Schubert. Kosegarten's poem is different in later editions and has the title "Agnes Nachtgesang" (see below).


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

Another version of this text exists in the database.

Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • CAT Catalan (Català) (Salvador Pila) , "Cant de la nit d'Ida", copyright © 2018, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • DUT Dutch (Nederlands) [singable] (Lau Kanen) , "Ida's nachtgezang", copyright © 2006, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ENG English (Laura Prichard) , copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ENG English (Malcolm Wren) , copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "Chant de nuit d'Ida", copyright © 2012, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Research team for this text: Richard Morris , Malcolm Wren [Guest Editor] , Peter Rastl [Guest Editor]

This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 24
Word count: 168

Listen, night, to what Ida is going to...
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
Listen, night, to what Ida is going to entrust to you,
She who, sated with day, flees to your arms,
You stars, who look on me with such beauty and love,
Listen to Ida's song with sweet attention.

He who I longed for in love-filled hours,
He who my heart rushed to greet, so full of longing,
O night, o stars, listen! I have found him,
He whose image I carried in my breast for so long.

And the muses smiled on his cradle,
Urania caressed him on her chaste lap.
He drank in beauty from her nectar-giving bosom,
And each of the Graces contributed to his upbringing.

In his eyes there shines a Promethean fire.
His heart justly catches fire with love and anger.
Truth lifts the veil from those who are languishing;
Phoebus' holy fountain is bubbling up for him.

Friend, you are mine, not just for a short journey,
Leading through the labyrinth of life;
Look, look at those spheres over there, the eternal beautiful circle
Where our union will be tied more tightly.

Friend, I am yours, not just for the sands of time
Which so quickly run out as they flow through Chronos's timepiece,
I am yours for the gigantic river of healthy eternities
Which pour out of the urn of the Eternal One.

About the headline (FAQ)

Translation of title "Idens Nachtgesang" = "Ida's night song"


  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © 2016 by Malcolm Wren, (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: 2016-09-10
Line count: 24
Word count: 219