by Alfred Edward Housman (1859 - 1936)
Translation © by Patricia Dillard Eguchi

Loveliest of trees, the cherry now
Language: English 
Available translation(s): FRE HEB
Loveliest of trees, the cherry now
Is hung with bloom along the bough,
And stands about the woodland ride
Wearing white for Eastertide.

Now, of my threescore years and ten,
Twenty will not come again,
And take from seventy [springs]1 a score,
It only leaves me fifty more.

And since to look at things in bloom
Fifty springs are little room,
About the [woodlands]2 I will go
To see the cherry hung with snow.

About the headline (FAQ)

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1 Manton: "years"
2 Steele: "woodland"


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):

  • FRE French (Français) (Patricia Dillard Eguchi) , copyright © 2018, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • HEB Hebrew (עברית) (Max Mader) , "היפה בעצים", copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 12
Word count: 74

A présent le plus charmant des arbres,...
Language: French (Français)  after the English 
A présent le plus charmant des arbres, le cerisier,
Aux branches couvertes de fleurs,
Il est sur le chemin du bois,
Tout en blanc pour Pâques.

De mes soixante dix ans alloués,
Mes vingt ans ne viendront pas deux fois,
Otons vingt ans de soixante-dix,
Il ne reste que cinquante ans à vivre.1

Contempler ce qui fleurit,
Prend peu de temps sur cinquante ans,
Et donc j’irai aux bois,
Voir le cerisier couvert de neige.

About the headline (FAQ)

View original text (without footnotes)

Translations of title(s):
"The cherry hung with snow" = "Le cerisier couvert de neige"
"Loveliest of trees" = "Le plus charmant des arbres"
"Youth" = "La jeunesse"
"The cherry tree" = "Le cerisier"
"Loveliest of trees, the cherry now" = "A présent le plus charmant des arbres, le cerisier"

1 Soixante dix ans : en anglais « threescore and ten » ; l’origine de cette expression est dans la Bible, Psaume 90. L’humain n’est alloué que 70 ans à vivre.


  • Translation from English to French (Français) copyright © 2018 by Patricia Dillard Eguchi, (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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This text was added to the website: 2018-08-21
Line count: 12
Word count: 75