by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749 - 1832)
Translation © by Emily Ezust

Es fürchte die Götter
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): DUT ENG FRE ITA
Es fürchte die Götter
Das Menschengeschlecht!
Sie halten die Herrschaft
In ewigen Händen,
Und können sie brauchen,
Wie's ihnen gefällt.

Der fürchte sie doppelt
Den je sie erheben!
Auf Klippen und Wolken
Sind Stühle bereitet
Um goldene Tische.

Erhebet ein Zwist sich,
So stürzen die Gäste,
Geschmäht und geschändet
In nächtliche Tiefen,
Und harren vergebens,
Im Finstern gebunden,
Gerechten Gerichtes.

Sie aber, sie bleiben
In ewigen Festen
An goldenen Tischen.
Sie schreiten vom Berge
Zu Bergen hinüber:
Aus Schlünden der Tiefe
Dampft ihnen der Atem
Erstickter Titanen,
Gleich Opfergerüchen,
Ein leichtes Gewölke.

Es wenden die Herrscher
Ihr segnendes Auge
Von ganzen Geschlechtern
Und meiden, im Enkel
Die ehmals geliebten,
Still redenden Züge
Des Ahnherrn zu sehn.

So sangen die Parzen;
Es horcht der Verbannte,
In nächtlichen Höhlen
Der Alte die Lieder,
Denkt Kinder und Enkel
Und schüttelt das Haupt.

About the headline (FAQ)

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) , title 1: "Gezang der Parcen", copyright © 2015, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ENG English (Emily Ezust) , no title, copyright ©
  • FRE French (Français) (Pierre Mathé) , title 1: "Le chant des Parques", copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Ferdinando Albeggiani) , title 1: "Tema gli dei", copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

Text added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Last modified: 2016-05-19 22:24:47
Line count: 41
Word count: 139

Let the race of mankind
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
Let the race of mankind
fear the gods!
For they hold dominion
over them in their eternal hands,
and can demand
what they please of us.
 
Doubly so should those fear them
who have been exalted by them!
On cliffs and clouds
stools stand ready
around golden tables.
 
If a dispute arises,
the guests are pitched down,
abused and shamed,
into the deep dark of night;
and they wait futilely,
bound in the dark,
for justice to be served.

But they [the gods] remain
at their eternal feast
at the golden tables.
They step from mountain
to mountain, up above:
from the abysses of the deep
steams the breath 
of suffocating Titans,
like a burnt offering,
a light mist.
 
The rulers turn away
their blessed eyes
from entire races of people,
shunning the sight in their descendants
of those formerly beloved and
silently-speaking features
of our ancestors.
 
So sang the Fates;
the banished one listens
in his night-dark lair
to the songs of the ancient ones,
thinks of his children and grandchildren
and shakes his head.

About the headline (FAQ)

Translations of titles
"Gesang der Parzen" = "Song of the Fates"
"Lied der Parzen" = "Song of the Fates"


Authorship

  • 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

 

Text added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Last modified: 2017-06-21 17:25:50
Line count: 41
Word count: 176