by Rudolph Baumbach (1840 - 1905)
Translation © by Sharon Krebs

Spielmann, wann hast du das Lied erdacht
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): ENG
Spielmann, wann hast du das Lied erdacht,
Das du uns nächten gesungen?
Sicherlich ist's in der Frühlingsnacht
Deinem Gemüthe entsprungen.
Rheinweinduft entquoll dem Pokal,
Und von rosigem Munde
Pflücktest du Küsse ohne Zahl--
Dreimal selige Stunde!

Spielmann spricht: "In des Schneewind's Zug
Klirrten die Fenster zersprungen,
Und es gefror mir das Wasser im Krug,
Als ich das Lied gesungen. 
Draussen im Gange in keifendem Ton
Zankte die böse Sieben,
Weil ich drei Monden den Miethzins schon
Schuldig der Hexe geblieben.["]

Confirmed with Rudolf Baumbach, Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen, dreizehntes Tausend, Leipzig: Verlag von A. G. Liebeskind, 1884, pages 157-158.


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):

  • ENG English (Sharon Krebs) , "Minstrel, when did you create the song", copyright © 2020, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Sharon Krebs [Guest Editor]

This text was added to the website: 2020-06-29
Line count: 16
Word count: 80

Minstrel, when did you create the song
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
Minstrel, when did you create the song
That you sang for us by night?
Surely it was in a springtime night
That it sprang forth from your spirit.
The scent of Rhine-wine wafted up from the goblet,
And from a rosy pair of lips
You plucked innumerable kisses –
Trice-blessed hour!

The minstrel says: "In the blowing of a blizzard
The broken windows rattled,
And the water in my jug froze
While I sang the song.
Outside in the hallway in a nagging tone
The evil [Frau] Sieben scolded,
Because for three months already
I had owed the old witch my rent.["]


  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © 2020 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: 2020-06-29
Line count: 16
Word count: 102