Translation © by Malcolm Wren

Grablied auf einen Soldaten
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): CAT DUT ENG FRE
Zieh hin, du braver Krieger, du!
Wir gleiten dich zur Grabesruh,
Und schreiten mit gesunkner Wehr,
  Von Wehmuth schwer
Und stumm vor deinem Sarge her.

Du warst ein bidrer, deutscher Mann,
Hast immerhin so brav gethan.
Dein Herz, voll edler Tapferkeit
  Hat nie im Streit
Geschoß und Säbelhieb gescheut.

Warst auch ein christlicher Soldat,
Der wenig sprach - und vieles that;
Dem Fürsten und dem Lande treu,
  Und fromm dabey
Von Herzen, ohne Heuchelei.

Du standst in grauser Mitternacht,
In Frost und Hize auf der Wacht;
Ertrugst so standhaft manche Noth
  Und danktest Gott
Für Wasser, und für's liebe Brod.

Wie du gelebt, so starbst auch du!
Schloßst deine Augen freudig zu,
Und dachtest: "Aus ist nun der Streit
  Und Kampf der Zeit,
Jezt kommt die ew'ge Seligkeit."

Der liebe Herrgott kannte dich.
In Himmel [kommst]1 du sicherlich.
Du Wittwe und ihr Kinderlein,
  Traut Gott allein:
Er wird nun eure Stüze seyn.

Die Bahre poltert in die Gruft;
Wir aber donnern in die Luft
Dein leztes Lebewohl dreimal.
  Im Himmelssaal
Dort sehn wir dich ohn' alle Qual.

Nehmt seinen [Säbel]2 von der Bahr,
Und seyd so brav, [als wie er]3 war.
Dann überwinden wir, wie er.
  Und heiß und schwer
Drükt uns des Lebens Joch nicht mehr.

         Trupp.
Eilt, Kameraden, von der Gruft!
Weil uns die Trommel wieder ruft.
Er rastet nun im kühlen Sand:
Uns fodert Fürst und Vaterland!
  Wir bieten ihm
  Mit Ungestüm
Die rauhe Kriegerhand.

Zwar gieng' es leichter in dem Feld
Als auf dem Bette aus der Welt.
Doch alles nur nach Gottes Rath!
So denkt ein redlicher Soldat.
  Ihm geht es gut,
  Er stirbt mit Muth,
Wie unser Kamerad.

F. Schubert sets stanzas 1-8

View original text (without footnotes)

Confirmed with Christian Friedrich Daniel Schubarts sämtliche Gedichte. Von ihm selbst herausgegeben. Zweiter Band. Stuttgart, in der Buchdruckerei der Herzoglichen Hohen Carlsschule, 1786, pages 392-394; and with Christian Friedrich Daniel Schubart's Gedichte. Herausgegeben von seinem Sohne Ludwig Schubart. Zweyter Theil. Frankfurt am Main 1802, bey J. C. Hermann, pages 325-327.

1 Schubart (1786 edition): "kamst"
2 Schubart (1786 edition): "Sabel"
3 Schubert (Alte Gesamtausgabe): "wie er es"

Authorship

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) , "Cant fúnebre per a un soldat", copyright © 2018, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • DUT Dutch (Nederlands) [singable] (Lau Kanen) , "Graflied voor een soldaat", copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ENG English (Malcolm Wren) , copyright © 2017, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "Chant funèbre pour un soldat", copyright © 2012, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


Research team for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator] , Peter Rastl [Guest Editor]

Text added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Last modified: 2018-01-20 12:42:52
Line count: 55
Word count: 274

Go off, you brave warrior!
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
Go off, you brave warrior!
We are accompanying you to your final resting place,
With downturned weapons we are marching,
Heavy with sadness,
We are silent before your coffin.

You were an upright German man,
You always behaved so honourably.
Your heart, full of noble courage,
In battle it never
Wavered in the face of gunfire or sword-thrusts.

You were also a Christian soldier,
Who said little but did a great deal;
Faithful to your Prince and your land,
With piety too
Coming from the heart, without any hypocrisy.

In the fearsome midst of the night you stood
Guard in frost and sweltering heat;
You so steadfastly bore various hardships
And you gave thanks to God
For water and for our beloved bread.

Just as you lived, you died in the same way!
You closed your eyes joyfully
And thought, "The struggle is now over,
Time's battle;
Now comes eternal blessedness."

Our beloved Lord God knew you.
You are definitely on the way to Heaven.
You widow and little child,
Trust God alone:
He is now going to be your support.

The bier is crashing into the sides of the grave
But we will raise thunder in the air
Giving three cheers as your last farewell.
In the hall of Heaven
We shall see you without any pain.

Take your sabre up to the bier
And be as brave as he was.
Then we shall overcome, as he did.
The heat and weight
Of life's yoke will no longer press down on us.

Squad

Rush, comrades, away from the grave!
For the drum is calling us again.
He is now resting in the cool sand:
We are claimed by our Prince and our Fatherland!
We offer him
Impetuously
Our rough warrior hands.

Indeed it is easier to go onto the battlefield
Than to go to bed away from the world.
But everything in accordance with God's will!
That is how an honest soldier thinks.
It is fine with him,
He dies with courage
Like our comrade.

About the headline (FAQ)

Translations of title(s):
"Todtenmarsch" = "Funeral march"
"Todenmarsch" = "Funeral march"
"Grablied auf einen Soldaten" = "Funeral song for a soldier"


Authorship

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

 

Text added to the website: 2017-09-18 00:00:00
Last modified: 2017-09-18 19:17:33
Line count: 55
Word count: 336