possibly by Christian Friedrich Daniel Schubart (1739 - 1791)
Translation © by Emily Ezust

Schlaf wohl, du Himmelsknabe du
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): CAT ENG FRE
Schlaf wohl, du Himmelsknabe du,
  Schlaf wohl, du süßes Kind! 
Dich fächeln Engelein in Ruh
  Mit sanftem Himmelswind. 
Wir arme Hirten singen dir 
Ein [herzigs]1 Wiegenliedlein für.
  [Himmelssöhnchen]2, schlafe! 

Maria hat mit [Mutterblick]3
  Dich leise zugedeckt;
Und Joseph hält den Hauch zurück, 
  Daß er dich nicht [erweckt]4.
Die Schäflein, die im Stalle sind,
Verstummen vor dir Himmelskind.
  Himmelssöhnchen, schlafe! 

[Bald]5 wirst du groß, dann fließt dein Blut 
  Von Golgatha herab; 
Ans Kreuz schlägt dich der Menschen Wuth,
  Dann legt man dich ins Grab. 
Hab immer deine Äuglein zu,
Denn du bedarfst der süßen Ruh.
  Himmelssöhnchen, schlafe!

So schlummert in der Mutter Schoos 
  Noch manches Kindlein ein; 
Doch wird das arme Kindlein groß,
  So hat es Angst und Pein. 
O Jesulein! durch deine Huld, 
Hilfs ihnen tragen mit Geduld.
  Himmelssöhnchen, schlafe!

C. Loewe sets stanzas 1-2
R. Strauss sets stanza 1
Anonymous sets stanzas 1-3

About the headline (FAQ)

View original text (without footnotes)
Note: this poem is found in Schubart's writings but marked as a "Geistliches Volkslied aus Schlesien", which may mean it is a folk text.
1 Loewe: "herzlich" ; K. W.: "herzig"
2 Loewe: "Himmelskindlein"
3 Loewe, K.W.: "Mutterlieb' "
4 K.W.: "weckt"
5 K.W.: "Und"


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) , copyright © 2020, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ENG English (Emily Ezust) , "Sleep well, you child of heaven", copyright ©
  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , 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: 32
Word count: 134

Sleep well, you child of heaven
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
Sleep well, you child of heaven,
sleep well, you sweet child;
little angels fan you calmly
with the gentle breeze of Heaven.
We poor shepherds sing for you
a little heartfelt lullaby;
sleep, little child of heaven, sleep.

Mary has, with a mother's love,
covered you gently
and Joseph [almost] holds his breath
so as not to awaken you.
The lambs that are in the stalls
are silent before you, child of heaven;
sleep, sleep, little son of heaven, sleep.


  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © by Emily Ezust

    Emily Ezust permits her translations to be reproduced without prior permission for printed (not online) programs to free-admission concerts only, provided the following credit is given:

    Translation copyright © by Emily Ezust,
    from the LiederNet Archive -- https://www.lieder.net/

    For any other purpose, please write to the e-mail address below to request permission and discuss possible fees.

Based on


This text was added to the website: 2006-02-06
Line count: 14
Word count: 80