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

Triftiger Grund
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): ENG
Dirnlein kommt vom Maientanz,
Hat sich müde gesprungen.
Fragt die Mutter, "Wo ist dein Kranz,
Den ich in's Haar dir geschlungen?"

"Als ich schritt durch die Felder hin,
Kam der Wind gefahren,
Riss mir Myrthe und Rosmarin 
Ungestüm aus den Haaren."

Macht die Mutter ein ernst Gesicht,
Legt die Stirne in Falten,
"Mädel, hast du zwei Hände nicht
Fest dein Kränzel zu halten?"

"Musste mit beiden Händen just 
Meinen Friedel umfassen,
Als wir uns küssten nach Herzenslust. --
Konnt' ich ihn fahren lassen?"

Confirmed with Rudolf Baumbach, Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen, vierte Auflage, Leipzig: Verlag von A. G. Liebeskind, 1882, pages 124-125.


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 [singable] (Frederick W. Bancroft)
  • ENG English (Sharon Krebs) , "A compelling reason", copyright © 2020, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Research team for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator] , Sharon Krebs [Guest Editor]

This text was added to the website: 2009-09-29
Line count: 16
Word count: 82

A compelling reason
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
The maiden comes home from the May dance,
She has fatigued herself with leaping about.
Her mother asks, "Where is the wreath
That I wound into your hair for you?"

"As I was walking through the fields
The wind came along;
Roughly it tore the myrtles 
And the rosemary from my hair."

Her mother makes a serious face,
Furrowing her brow:
"Girl, don't you have two hands
With which to keep a hold of your wreath?"

"Just then I needed both my hands
In order to embrace my Friedel
As we were kissing each other to our hearts' content. --
Could I have let go of him?"


  • 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: 106