by Friedrich Rückert (1788 - 1866)
Translation © by Linda Godry

Die sieben Siegel
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): CAT ENG FRE
Weil ich dich nicht legen kann
Unter Schloß und Riegel; 
Dir zum Abschied leg' ich an
Diese sieben Siegel. 

Küsse sollen Siegel sein,
Einer auf die Lippe, 
Daß am Nektarkelche kein
Honigdieb mir nippe! 

Dieses Siegel auf die Brust,
Auf den Nacken dieses; 
Fremder Wunsch sei fern der Lust
Meines Paradieses! 

Zweie noch auf Wang' und Wang'
Und auf Aug' und Auge; 
Daß kein Mund danach verlang',
Und kein Blick hier sauge! 

Liebes Kind, um deine Schuld 
Trag die Siegel in Geduld!
Morgen wollen wir die bösen 
Sieben Siegel wieder lösen.


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) , "Els set precintes", copyright © 2020, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ENG English (Linda Godry) , "The seven seals", copyright © 2007, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Pierre Mathé) , copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: John Versmoren

This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 20
Word count: 91

The seven seals
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
Because I can't keep you
Behind bars;
For a goodbye I mark you with these
Seven seals.

Kisses are those seals,
One on your lips,
To warn off marauding honeysuckers
Not to indulge in my nectar!

This seal on your breast,
This on the back of your neck;
No foreign desire may reach
For my paradise!

Two, each for your cheeks
And eyes;
No mouth shall yearn for them,
No gaze be drawn into yours!

Dear child, you owe me
To bear the seals in patience!
Tomorrow we will relieve you
From those offending seven seals.


  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © 2007 by Linda Godry, (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: 2007-06-03
Line count: 20
Word count: 96