Translation © by Sharon Krebs

Wie erhöht, Weltherrscher
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): ENG
Wie erhöht, Weltherrscher, 
Deine Bewundrung den Geist des Staubs! 
Denket er dich, Herrlicher, welche Gefühl 
Flammt in ihm! welcher Gedank' hebt ihn, denket er dich!

Ist ein Mensch glückselig? 
Einer der Waller am Grabe das? 
Du, der es ist, rede, dich frag' ich allein:
Nennest du, würdigest du etwas Seligkeit dann,

In dem Staub' hier unten, 
Dann noch zu nennen, wenn Gottes Wink 
Wonnegefühl seiner Vollkommenheit dir 
Sendet, du freudig erschrickst über Gott, wie im Traum,

Vor dem [Hingang]1 selig?
[Fliege durch Welten, und sey der Freund]2
Derer, die schon Ewigkeit hinter sich sehn,
[Dachten, und thaten: du bist nur glückselig selbst dort!]3

Denn des Herrn Anschauen 
Ist es allein, was dir Seligkeit, 
Jenes Gefühl seiner Vollkommenheit dir 
Giebt, daß du freudig erschrickst über Gott, den du schaust!

H. Nägeli sets stanzas 1-4

About the headline (FAQ)

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Nägeli: "Anschaun"
2 Nägeli: "Flüge durch Welten? Ein Freund zu sein "
3 Nägeli: "Dachten und thaten --- Es ist nur Glückseligkeit auch."


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

  • by Hans Georg Nägeli (1773 - 1836), "Die höchste Glückseligkeit", published 1794, stanzas 1-4 [voice and piano], in Lieder in Musik gesetzt, Erste Sammlung, Zürich, Verlag des Verfassers [ sung text checked 1 time]

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

  • ENG English (Sharon Krebs) , copyright © 2017, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Research team for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator] , Sharon Krebs [Guest Editor] , Melanie Trumbull

This text was added to the website: 2010-06-23
Line count: 20
Word count: 128

Ruler of the world, how does
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
Ruler of the world, how does
Adulation of Thee elevate the spirit of the dust!
If he thinks on Thee, Glorious One, what feelings
Flame within him! what thoughts elevate him, if he thinks on Thee!

Is a man blissfully happy?
Is a pilgrim at the grave that?
You, who are [happy], speak; I ask only you:
Do you then still call [anything], do you judge anything as felicity

In the dust down here,
When God's sign
Sends you the blissful awareness of His perfection
[And] you are joyfully startled at the thought of God, as in a dream,

[Before your demise]1?
[Fly through worlds and be the friend]2
Of those, who already see eternity behind them,
[Thought, and acted: for you yourself shall only be happy there!]3

For beholding the Lord
Is alone what gives you felicity,
That feeling of His perfection,
So that you may be joyfully startled by God, whom you see!

About the headline (FAQ)

View original text (without footnotes)

Translations of title(s):
"Die höchste Glückseligkeit" = "The greatest happiness"
"Der Selige" = "The blissful man"

1 Nägeli: "in the beholding"
2 Nägeli: "Would you fly through worlds? A friend to be"
3 Nägeli: "Thought, and acted -- It is only felicity as well."


  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © 2017 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


This text was added to the website: 2017-05-13
Line count: 20
Word count: 155