by Wilhelm Müller (1794 - 1827)
Translation © by Michael P. Rosewall

Guten Abend, lieber Mondenschein!
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): ENG FRE
"Guten Abend, lieber Mondenschein!
Wie [blickst]1 mir so traulich ins Herz hinein!
Nun sprich, und laß dich nicht lange fragen,
Du hast mir gewiß [einen]2 Gruß zu sagen,
    [Einen]2 Gruß von meinem Schatz!" --
 
"Wie [sollt']3 ich bringen den Gruß zu dir?
[Du hast ja]4 keinen Schatz bei mir;
Und was mir da unten die [Burschen]5 sagen,
Und was mir die Frauen und Mädchen klagen,
    Ei, das versteh' ich nicht." --
 
"Hast Recht, [mein]6 lieber Mondenschein,
Du darfst auch Schätzchens Bote nicht sein;
Denn thätst [du zu tief]7 ihr ins Auge sehen,
Du könntest ja [nimmermehr]8 untergehen,
    [Schienst]9 ewig nur für sie.“
 
[Dies]10 Liedchen ist ein Abendreih'n,
Ein Wandrer sang's im Vollmondschein;
Und die es lesen bei Kerzenlicht,
Die Leute [verstehen]11 das Liedchen nicht,
    Und ist doch kinderleicht.

N. Gade sets stanzas 1-3

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Confirmed with Gedichte von Wilhelm Müller, mit Einleitung und Anmerkungen herausgegeben von Max Müller, Erster Theil, Leipzig: F.A. Brockhaus, 1868, page 34

1 Grünberger: "blickst du"
2 Grünberger: "'nen"
3 Draeseke, Fischhof: "soll"
4 Draeseke, Fischhof: "Hab' ich doch"; Grünberger: "Hast ja"
5 Draeseke, Grünberger: "Bursche"
6 Draeseke, Fischhof: "du"
7 Gade: "zu tief du"
8 Grünberger: "nimmer"
9 Grünberger: "Scheinst"
10 Grünberger: "Das"
11 Grünberger: "versteh'n"

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:

  • Also set in English, a translation by Eleonore D'Esterre-Keeling (1856 - 1939) ; composed by Niels Wilhelm Gade.
  • Also set in French (Français), a translation by Anonymous/Unidentified Artist ; composed by Niels Wilhelm Gade.

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

  • ENG English (Michael P. Rosewall) , copyright © 2012, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "Chant du soir", copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


Research team for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator] , Sharon Krebs [Guest Editor] , Andrew Schneider [Guest Editor] , Johann Winkler

This text was added to the website: 2007-07-04
Line count: 20
Word count: 126

Good evening, dear moonlight
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
Good evening, dear moonlight,
How intimately you gaze into my heart;
Now speak and ask no more questions,
You must surely have a greeting to give,
A greeting from my sweetheart!

How could I bring a greeting to you?
I certainly have no sweetheart with me;
And what the lads say down below me,
And how the wives and maids complain,
Ah, I understand none of it!

You are correct, you dear moonlight,
And you musn't be my sweetie's messenger, 
For if you were to look deeply into her eyes,
You would never again set,
Shining forever only for her!

This little song is an evening tune,
Sung by a minstrel in the full moonlight,
And if it is read by mere candlelight,
No one will understand the song at all,
Even though it is simple as child's play!

About the headline (FAQ)

Authorship

  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © 2012 by Michael P. Rosewall, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you may ask the copyright-holder(s) directly or ask us; we are authorized to grant permission on their behalf. Please provide the translator's name when contacting us.
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Based on

 

This text was added to the website: 2012-10-26
Line count: 20
Word count: 139