by Eduard Mörike (1804 - 1875)
Translation © by Charles James Pearson

Wasch dich, mein Schwesterchen, wasch...
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): CAT ENG FRE
Wasch dich, mein Schwesterchen, wasch dich!
Zu Robins Hochzeit gehn wir heut:
Er hat die stolze Ruth gefreit.
Wir kommen ungebeten;
Wir schmausen nicht, wir tanzen nicht
Und nicht mit lachendem Gesicht
Komm ich vor ihn zu treten.

Strähl dich, mein Schwesterchen, strähl dich!
Wir wollen ihm singen ein Rätsel-Lied,
Wir wollen ihm klingen ein böses Lied;
Die Ohren sollen ihm gellen.
Ich will ihr schenken einen Kranz
Von Nesseln und von Dornen ganz:
Damit fährt sie zur Hölle!

Schick dich, mein Schwesterchen, schmück dich!
Derweil sie alle sind am Schmaus,
Soll rot in Flammen stehn das Haus,
Die Gäste schreien und rennen.
Zwei sollen sitzen unverwandt,
Zwei hat ein Sprüchlein festgebannt;
Zu Kohle müssen sie brennen.

Lustig, mein Schwesterchen, lustig!
Das war ein alter Ammensang.
Den falschen Rob vergaß ich lang.
Er soll mich sehen lachen!
Hab ich doch einen andern Schatz,
Der mit mir tanzet auf dem Platz -
Sie werden Augen machen!

About the headline (FAQ)


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) , copyright © 2021, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ENG English (Charles James Pearson) , "Daughter from the wilds", copyright ©, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Pierre Mathé) , "Lave-toi, ma sœurette, lave-toi !", copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Alberto Pedrotti

This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 28
Word count: 155

Daughter from the wilds
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
 Wash, sisters, wash!
 Today we go to Robin's wedding:
 He has set free the haughty Ruth.
 We go uninvited;
 we shan't feast, we shan't dance,
 and I shan't approach him
 with a laughing face!
 Shine, sisters, shine!
 We shall sing him a riddle,
 we toast him with an awful song,
 we'll make his ears ring.
 I will give him a garland
 made only of nettles and thorns
 to take on his trip to Hell!
 Prepare, sisters, adorn yourselves!
 And while you are all at the feast,
 the house red in flames shall stand,
 the guests shall shriek and flee.
 Two shall sit immovable,
 Two a curse has firmly bound;
 they must burn to cinders!
 Merry, sisters, merry!
 That was an old nursery song.
 Long ago I forgot false Rob.
 He shall see me laugh!
 And now I have yet another love
 to dance with me upon the square -
 That will open their eyes!


  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © by Charles James Pearson, (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 between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 28
Word count: 155