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

In tausend Formen magst du dich...
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): ENG
In tausend Formen magst du dich verstecken,
Doch, Allerliebste, gleich erkenn ich dich;
Du magst mit Zauberschleiern dich bedecken,
Allgegenwärt'ge, gleich erkenn ich dich.

An der Zypresse reinstem jungem Streben,
Allschöngewachsne, gleich erkenn ich dich. 
In des Kanales reinem Wellenleben,
Allschmeichelhafte, wohl erkenn ich dich. 

Wenn steigend sich der Wasserstrahl entfaltet,
Allspielende, wie froh erkenn ich dich! 
Wenn Wolke sich gestaltend umgestaltet,
Allmannigfaltge, dort erkenn ich dich. 

An des geblümten Schleiers Wiesenteppich,
Allbuntbesternte, schön erkenn ich dich;
Und greift umher ein tausendarmger Eppich,
O Allumklammernde, da kenn ich dich. 

Wenn am Gebirg der Morgen sich entzündet,
Gleich, Allerheiternde, begrüß ich dich,
Dann über mir der Himmel rein sich ründet,
Allherzerweiternde, dann atm' ich dich. 

Was ich mit äußerm Sinn, mit innerm kenne,
Du Allbelehrende, kenn ich durch dich;
Und wenn ich Allahs Namenhundert nenne,
Mit jedem klingt ein Name nach für dich.

L. Dallapiccola sets stanza 1

About the headline (FAQ)


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 (Emily Ezust) , "In a thousand different forms you may hide yourself", copyright ©

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 24
Word count: 142

In a thousand different forms you may hide yourself
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
 In a thousand different forms you may hide yourself,
 but all the same, my best-beloved, I will recognize you;
 you may shroud yourself with magic veils
 but all the same, my ubiquitous one, I will recognize you.
 In the cypress's undefiled, youthful striving,
 all the same, my ever-growing beauty, I will recognize you.
 In the canal's pristine and lively ripples,
 my ever-complimented one, well do I recognize you.
 When a spurt of water ascends and unfolds,
 my playful one, how merrily I will recognize you!
 When a cloud forms itself into a new shape,
 my many-splendoured one, I will recognize you there.
 In the blossoming, misty carpet of meadow,
 my colorful, starry one, I will recognize your beauty;
 And if a thousand-armed ivy spreads out its grasp,
 o, all-clasping one, I will know you there.
 When the morning blazes up beside the mountains,
 at once, my cheerful one, I will greet you;
 then over me the sky will bend into a pure dome,
 my ever-widening heart, then I will breathe you in.
 What I know with my outer and inner senses,
 I know through you, my teacher;
 And when I call Allah's hundred names,
 with every one, a name resounds for you. 


  • 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:


This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 24
Word count: 203