by William Shakespeare (1564 - 1616)
Translation by François-Victor Hugo (1828 - 1873)

Like as the waves make towards the...
Language: English 
Available translation(s): ITA
Like as the waves make towards the pebbled shore,
So do our minutes hasten to their end;
Each changing place with that which goes before,
In sequent toil all forwards do contend.
Nativity, once in the main of light,
Crawls to maturity, wherewith being crown'd,
Crooked eclipses 'gainst his glory fight,
And Time that gave doth now his gift confound.
Time doth transfix the flourish set on youth
And delves the parallels in beauty's brow,
Feeds on the rarities of nature's truth,
And nothing stands but for his scythe to mow:
    And yet to times in hope, my verse shall stand.
    Praising thy worth, despite his cruel hand. 

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

Settings in other languages, adaptations, or excerpts:

  • Also set in German (Deutsch), a translation by Hans Hübner , copyright © ; composed by Hans-Georg Burghardt.

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


Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

Text added to the website: 2009-10-18 00:00:00
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:02:39
Line count: 14
Word count: 108

Comme les vagues se jettent sur les...
Language: French (Français)  after the English 
Comme les vagues se jettent sur les galets de la plage, 
nos minutes se précipitent vers leur fin, 
chacune prenant la place de celle qui la précédait ; 
et toutes se pressent en avant dans une pénible procession.
La nativité, une fois dans les flots de la lumière, 
monte jusqu'à la maturité et s'y couronne. 
Alors les éclipses tortueuses s'acharnent contre sa splendeur, 
et le temps détruit les dons dont il l'avait comblée.
Le temps balafre la fleur de la jeunesse, 
et creuse les parallèles sur le front de la beauté : 
il ronge les merveilles les plus pures de la création, 
et rien ne reste debout que sa faux ne tranche.
  Et pourtant dans l'avenir mon vers restera debout,
  chantant tes louanges, en dépit de sa main cruelle.

About the headline (FAQ)

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Based on

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

    [ None yet in the database ]


Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

Text added to the website: 2010-08-17 00:00:00
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:03:57
Line count: 14
Word count: 129