by Friedrich von Hagedorn (1708 - 1754)
Translation © by Bertram Kottmann

Zu meiner Zeit, zu meiner Zeit
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): DUT ENG FIN FRE ITA
Zu meiner Zeit, zu meiner Zeit
Bestand noch Recht und Billigkeit.
Da wurden auch aus Kindern Leute,
Aus tugendhaften Mädchen Bräute;
Doch alles mit Bescheidenheit.
O gute Zeit, o gute Zeit!
Es ward kein Jüngling zum Verräter,
Und unsre Jungfern freiten später,
Sie reizten nicht der Mütter Neid.
O gute, Zeit, o gute Zeit!

Zu meiner Zeit, zu meiner Zeit
Befliß man sich der Heimlichkeit.
Genoß der Jüngling ein Vergnügen,
So war er dankbar und verschwiegen;
Doch jetzt entdeckt er's ungescheut.
O schlimme Zeit, o schlimme Zeit!
Die Regung mütterlicher Triebe,
Der Vorwitz und der Geist der Liebe
Fährt jetzt oft schon in's Flügelkleid.
O schlimme Zeit, o schlimme Zeit!

Zu meiner Zeit, zu meiner Zeit
ward Pflicht und Ordnung nicht entweiht.
Der Mann ward, wie es sich gebühret,
Von einer lieben Frau regieret,
Trotz seiner stolzen Männlichkeit.
O gute Zeit, o gute Zeit!
Die Fromme herrschte nur gelinder,
Uns blieb der Hut und ihm die Kinder;
Das war die Mode weit und breit.
O gute Zeit, o gute Zeit!

Zu meiner Zeit, zu meiner Zeit
war noch in Ehen Einigkeit.
Jetzt darf der Mann uns fast gebieten,
Uns widersprechen und uns hüten,
Wo man mit Freunden sich erfreut.
O schlimme Zeit, o schlimme Zeit!
Mit dieser Neuerung im Lande,
Mit diesem Fluch im Ehestande
Hat ein Komet uns längst bedräut.
O schlimme Zeit, o schlimme Zeit!

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Authorship

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):

  • DUT Dutch (Nederlands) [singable] (Lau Kanen) , "De oude vrouw", copyright © 2011, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ENG English (Bertram Kottmann) , "The old woman", copyright © 2007, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FIN Finnish (Suomi) (Erkki Pullinen) , copyright © 2020, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , copyright © 2018, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Ferdinando Albeggiani) , "La vecchia", copyright © 2010, (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: 40
Word count: 227

The old woman
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
In my time, in my time
there were still right and justice.
At that time children grew up quickly, too,
and virtuous girls became brides;
but everything in modesty.
O good old days, o good old days!
No young man became a traitor,
and our virgins married later,
they didn't excite their mothers' envy.
O good old days, o good old days!

In my time, in my time
people used to be discreet.
When the young man was out pleasuring,
he was grateful and kept the secret;
but now he reveals it unabashedly.
O bad times, o bad times!
Maternal instincts, cheekiness
and the desire for love
get into people before they're able to fly.
O bad times, o bad times!

In my time, in my time
duties and order were not profaned.
The husband was, as is proper,
governed by a beloved wife,
despite of his proud manliness.
O good old days, o good old days!
The pious wife just ruled more mildly,
we had our hats and he had the children;
this used to be a widespread custom.
O good old days, o good old days!
 
In my time, in my time
there was agreement in the bond of matrimony.
Now the husband is almost allowed to have command over us,
contradict us and be our custodian
when we have pleasure with friends.
O bad times, o bad times!
With this novelty in our country, 
with this curse upon the married life
a comet has threatened us for a long time.
O bad times, o bad times!

Authorship

  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © 2007 by Bertram Kottmann, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you must ask the copyright-holder(s) directly for permission. If you receive no response, you must consider it a refusal.

    Bertram Kottmann.  Contact: BKottmann (AT) t-online.de

    If you wish to commission a new translation, please contact:

Based on

 

This text was added to the website: 2007-01-29
Line count: 40
Word count: 259