by Johann Georg Jacobi (1740 - 1814)
Translation © by Malcolm Wren

In der Mitternacht
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): CAT DUT ENG FRE
Todesstille deckt das Thal
Bey des Mondes [halbem]1 Strahl; 
Winde flistern, dumpf und bang,
In des Wächters Nachtgesang.

Leiser, dumpfer tönt es hier
In der bangen Seele mir,
Nimmt den Strahl der Hoffnung fort,
Wie den Mond die Wolke dort.

Hüllt, ihr Wolken, hüllt den Schein
Immer tiefer, tiefer ein!
Vor ihm bergen will mein Herz
Seinen tiefen, tiefen Schmerz.

Nennen soll ihn nicht mein Mund;
Keine Thräne mach' ihn kund;
Senken soll man ihn hinab
Einst mit mir ins kühle Grab.

O der schönen langen Nacht,
Wo nicht Erden-Liebe lacht,
Wo verlaßne Treue nicht
Ihren Kranz von Dornen flicht!

An des Todes milder Hand
Geht der Weg ins Vaterland;
Dort ist Liebe sonder Pein;
Selig, selig werd' ich seyn.

View original text (without footnotes)

Confirmed with J. G. JHacobi's sämmtliche Werke. Dritter Band. Zweyte rechtmäßige, verbesserte und vermehrte Auflage. Zürich, bey Orell, Füßli und Compagnie. 1809, pages 245-246; and with Gedichte von Johann Georg Jacobi. Zweyter Theil. Wien, 1816. Bey Ch. Kaulfuß & C. Armbruster (Meisterwerke deutscher Dichter und Prosaisten. Siebenzehntes Bändchen), pages 112-113.

1 Schubert: "falbem"


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) , "A la mitjanit", copyright © 2018, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • DUT Dutch (Nederlands) [singable] (Lau Kanen) , "Midden in de nacht", copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ENG English (Malcolm Wren) , "At midnight", copyright © 2017, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "À minuit", copyright © 2017, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

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

Text added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Last modified: 2017-08-04 05:40:54
Line count: 24
Word count: 120

At midnight
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
A deathly silence is covering the valley
In the [half]1 moonlight;
Winds are whispering, muffled and anxious,
In the watchman's night song.

It resounds here, more gentle, more muffled,
In my anxious soul,
It takes away the ray of hope
As the cloud up there removes the moon.

Wrap it, clouds, wrap the glow
Up, ever deeper, deeper!
My heart wants to hide from it
Its deep, deep pain.

My mouth will not name it;
No tears will acknowledge it;
It should be buried 
Along with me in the cool grave.

Oh, that beautiful long night
Where no earthly love laughs,
Where faithlessness does not
Construct a wreath of thorns!

In the gentle hand of death
The path leads into the fatherland;
There, there is love without agony;
I shall be happy, happy.

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Schubert: "pale" (literally 'dun')


  • 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.

Based on


Text added to the website: 2017-10-04 00:00:00
Last modified: 2017-10-06 14:44:48
Line count: 24
Word count: 133