by Friedrich Wilhelm Gotter (1746 - 1797)
Translation © by Malcolm Wren

Pflicht und Liebe
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): CAT DUT ENG FRE
Du, der ewig um mich trauert,
Nicht allein, nicht unbedauert,
Jüngling, seufzest du;
Wann vor Schmerz die Seele schauert,
Lüget meine Stirne Ruh.

Deines nassen Blickes Flehen
Will ich, darf ich nicht [verstehen]1;
Aber zürne nicht!
Was ich fühle, zu gestehen,
Untersagt mir meine2 Pflicht.

Unbekannt mit Reu' und Leide,
Wie die Lämmchen auf der Weide,
Spielten ich und du.
Jeder Tag rief uns zur Freude,
Jede Nacht zur sanften Ruh.

Ewig sind wir nun geschieden!
Damon, liebst du Philaiden,
Fleuch ihr Angesicht!
Nimm ihr nicht der Tage Frieden,
Und der Nächte Schlummer nicht!

Freund, schweif' aus mit deinen Blicken!
Laß dich die Natur entzücken,
Die dir sonst gelacht!
Ach, sie wird auch mich beglücken,
Wenn sie dich erst glücklich macht.

Trauter Jüngling, lächle wieder!
Sieh, beym Gruße [froher Lieder]3,
Steigt die Sonn' empor!
Trübe sank sie gestern nieder;
Herrlich geht sie heut' hervor.

F. Schubert sets stanzas 1-2

View original text (without footnotes)

Confirmed with Gedichte von Friedrich Wilhelm Gotter. Erster Band. Gotha, bey Carl Wilhelm Ettinger, 1787, pages 12-14; and with Gedichte von Friedrich Wilhelm Gotter. Wien, 1816. Bey Chr. Kaulfuß und C. Armbruster (Meisterwerke deutscher Dichter und Prosaisten. Fünfzehntes Bändchen), pages 14-15.

Note: Schubert's autograph breaks off at the end of the second stanza. One may assume that he set the poem as a through-composed song with different music for the subsequent stanzas. Max Friedlaender, the editor of the first edition, completed the fragment in the form of a stanzaic song by adding a short interlude/postlude and inserting stanzas 5 and 6.

1 Schubert: "verstehn"
2 Schubert's manuscript fragment breaks off here.
3 Schubert (Friedlaender edition): "frohen Sangs"


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) , "Deure i amor", copyright © 2018, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • DUT Dutch (Nederlands) [singable] (Lau Kanen) , "Plicht en liefde", copyright © 2007, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ENG English (Malcolm Wren) , "Duty and love", copyright © 2017, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "Devoir et amour", copyright © 2017, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

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

This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 30
Word count: 144

Duty and love
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
You who are always grieving for me,
You are not alone, you are not unpitied,
Young man, when you sigh;
When my soul shudders with pain
The calm on my forehead is a lie.

The pleading of your moist eyes
Is something that I will not, I may not understand;
But do not be angry!
What I feel cannot be confessed,
My duty forbids me to do so.

Strangers to regret or pain,
Like little lambs in the meadow,
You and I used to play.
Each day called us to joy,
Each night to gentle rest.

We are now separated for ever!
Damon, if you love Phillida
Flee from her sight!
Do not take away her peace during the day
Or her sleep at night-time!

Friend, stop looking in this direction!
Allow yourself to be delighted by nature,
Which has always smiled on you!
Oh, it will make me happy too
If it ever makes you happy.

Dear young man, smile again!
Look, as merry songs greet it
The sun is rising!
Yesterday it set amongst clouds,
But it is coming forth majestically today.


  • 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


This text was added to the website: 2017-10-07
Line count: 30
Word count: 184