Translation © by Emily Ezust

Kuckuck hat sich zu Tode gefallen
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): ENG FRE ITA
Kuckuck hat sich zu Tode gefallen
An einer grünen Weiden,
Kuckuck ist tot! Kuckuck ist tot!
Wer soll uns jetzt den Sommer lang
Die Zeit und Weil vertreiben?

Ei, das soll tun Frau Nachtigall,
Die sitzt auf grünem Zweige;
[Die kleine, feine Nachtigall,
Die liebe, süße Nachtigall!]1
Sie singt und springt, ist allzeit froh,
Wenn andre Vögel schweigen.

Wir warten auf Frau Nachtigall,
Die wohnt im grünen Hage,
Und wenn der Kukuk zu Ende ist,
Dann fängt sie an zu schlagen!

About the headline (FAQ)

View original text (without footnotes)
1 note in score: "Von [ bis ] kann die Gesangsstimme eventuell nach Bedürfniss des Sängers weggelassen werden." - according to the needs of the singer, this part can be omitted.


Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)

Set in a modified version by Johann Steffens.

Set in a modified version by Joseph Haas.

Set in a modified version by Johanna von Hahn.

Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • ENG English (Emily Ezust) , no title, copyright ©
  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "Relève en été", copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Amelia Maria Imbarrato) , "Cambio della guardia in estate", copyright © 2007, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Jakob Kellner

This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 15
Word count: 81

The cuckoo has fallen to its death
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
The cuckoo has fallen to its death
On a green willow,
The cuckoo is dead! The cuckoo is dead!
Who should then the summer long
Help us pass the time?

Oh, that should be Mrs. Nightingale!
She sits on a green branch!
The small, fine nightingale,
The lovely, sweet nightingale!
She sings and springs, is always joyous,
When other birds are silent!

We await Mrs. Nightingale,
Who lives in a green glen,
And when the cuckoo call is at its end,
Then does she begin to sing!

About the headline (FAQ)

Translation of title "Ablösung im Sommer" = "Change in summer"


  • 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 --

    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 between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 15
Word count: 87