by Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792 - 1822)
Translation by Luise von Plönnies, née Leisler (1803 - 1872)

Swiftly walk over the western wave
Language: English 
 Swiftly walk over the western wave, 
     Spirit of Night! 
 Out of the misty eastern cave, 
   Where, all the long and lone daylight, 
 Thou wovest dreams of joy and fear 
 Which make thee terrible and dear, - 
     Swift be thy flight!

 Wrap thy form in a mantle grey 
     Star-inwrought! 
 Blind with thine hair the eyes of Day, 
   Kiss her until she be wearied out, 
 Then wander o'er city and sea, and land, 
 Touching all with thine opiate wand - 
     Come, long-sought!

 When I arose and saw the dawn, 
     I sigh'd for thee; 
 When light rode high, and the dew was gone, 
   And noon lay heavy on flower and tree, 
 And the weary Day turn'd to his rest, 
 Lingering like an unloved guest, 
     I sigh'd for thee.

 Thy brother Death came, and cried, 
     "Wouldst thou me?" 
 Thy sweet child Sleep, the filmy-eyed, 
   Murmur'd like a noontide bee, 
 "Shall I nestle near thy side?
 Wouldst thou me?" - And I replied, 
     "No, not thee!"

  Death will come when thou art dead, 
     Soon, too soon -
 Sleep will come when thou art fled; 
   Of neither would I ask the boon 
 I ask to thee, beloved Night -
 Swift be [thine]1 approaching flight,
     Come soon, soon!

L. Lehrman sets lines 8-11
E. Maconchy sets stanza 5

About the headline (FAQ)

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Maconchy: "thy"

Authorship

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:

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


Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

Text added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:01:50
Line count: 35
Word count: 202

An die Nacht
Language: German (Deutsch)  after the English 
Göttin der Nacht, schweb' über die Fluth
  Und die westliche Well'!
Aus des Ostens Höhle, wo du geruht,
So lang uns geleuchtet das Tageslicht hell,
Wo du Träume, an Schrecken und Freuden reich,
Gewoben, du furchtbar und hold zugleich,
  Nahe mir schnell!

Wick'le in grauen Schleier dich ein,
  Sternenverschönte!
Verhüll' mit den Locken des Tags hellen Schein,
Und küss' ihn, bis müd' er an's Herz sich dir lehnte;
Dann schweb' über Länder und Meere hinab,
Berühre sie all' mit dem Zauberstab;
  Komm', lang Ersehnte!

Als ich am frühen Morgen erwacht,
  Seufzt' ich nach dir! 
Als den Thau getrocknet der Sonne Pracht,
Und die Gluth lag drückend auf Bäumen und mir,
Und der müde Tag sich zögernd zur Rast
Wandte, gleich einem unlieben Gasts
  Seufzt' ich nach dir!















Note: The last two stanzas do not appear to have been translated.

Authorship

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)

  • by Adolf Jensen (1837 - 1879), "An die Nacht", op. 61 (Sechs Lieder für 1 tiefe Stimme und Pianoforte) no. 6, published 1877 [low voice and piano], Breslau, Hainauer [
     text not verified 
    ]

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

Text added to the website: 2011-07-18 00:00:00
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:04:28
Line count: 21
Word count: 127