by Charles Baudelaire (1821 - 1867)
Translation © by Emily Wyatt

Je t'adore à l'égal de la voûte nocturne
Language: French (Français) 
Available translation(s): ENG
Je t'adore à l'égal de la voûte nocturne,
Ô vase de tristesse, ô grande taciturne,
Et t'aime d'autant plus, belle, que tu me fuis,
Et que tu me parais, ornement de mes nuits,
Plus ironiquement accumuler les lieues
Qui séparent mes bras des immensités bleues.

Je m'avance à l'attaque, et je grimpe aux assauts,
Comme après un cadavre un chœur de vermisseaux,
Et je chéris, ô bête implacable et cruelle,
Jusqu'à cette froideur par où tu m'es plus belle !

About the headline (FAQ)

Confirmed with Charles Baudelaire, Les Fleurs du mal, appears in Spleen et Idéal, Paris: Poulet-Malassis et de Broise, 1857, page 56. Note: this was number 22 in the first edition but number 24 in subsequent editions.


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 Russian (Русский), a translation by Anonymous/Unidentified Artist ; composed by Aleksandr Tikhonovich Gretchaninov.

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

  • CZE Czech (Čeština) (Jaroslav Haasz) , "Já tebe zbožňuji…"
  • ENG English (Emily Wyatt) , "I love you", copyright © 2012, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Research team for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator] , Poom Andrew Pipatjarasgit [Guest Editor]

This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 10
Word count: 80

I love you
Language: English  after the French (Français) 
I adore you as much as I love the nocturnal vault,
O vessel of sadness, o grandly silent one,
And I love you all the more, fair one, because you flee me,
And because to me you appear, ornament of my nights, 
Ironically, more to pile up the distance 
Which separate my arms from the blue vastnesses.

I advance to the attack, and I mount assaults,
Like a swarm of maggots after a corpse,
And I cherish you, o beast, implacable and cruel!
As far as that coldness for which you are more beautiful to me!


  • Translation from French (Français) to English copyright © 2012 by Emily Wyatt, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you must ask the copyright-holder(s) directly for permission. If you receive no response, you must consider it a refusal.

    Emily Wyatt.  Contact: cobbsquint (AT) gmail (DOT) com

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Based on


This text was added to the website: 2012-10-09
Line count: 10
Word count: 96