by Johann Ludwig Uhland (1787 - 1862)
Translation © by Sharon Krebs

Das Schifflein
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): DUT ENG FRE ITA
Ein Schifflein ziehet leise
Den Strom hin seine Gleise.
Es schweigen, die drin wandern,
Denn keiner kennt den andern.

Was zieht hier aus dem Felle
Der braune [Waldgeselle]1?
Ein Horn, das sanft erschallet:
Das Ufer [widerhallet]2.

Von seinem Wanderstabe
Schraubt jener Stift und Habe,
Und mischt mit Flötentönen
Sich in des Hornes Dröhnen.

Das Mädchen saß so blöde,
Als fehlt' ihr gar die Rede,
Jetzt stimmt sie mit Gesange
Zu Horn- und Flötenklange.

Die [Rudrer]3 auch sich regen
Mit taktgemäßen Schlägen.
Das Schiff hinunter flieget,
Von Melodie gewieget.

Hart stößt es auf am Strande,
Man trennt sich in die Lande:
»Wann treffen wir uns, Brüder?
Auf einem Schifflein wieder?«

View original text (without footnotes)
1 in some versions of Uhland: "Weidgeselle" or "Waidgeselle" (Mendelssohn and Schumann use "Waidgeselle")
2 in some versions of Uhland: "wiederhallet"
3 in some versions of Uhland: "Schiffer"; Mendelssohn: "Ruder"

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 Anonymous/Unidentified Artist DUT FRE ITA ; composed by Frederick Brandeis.

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

  • DUT Dutch (Nederlands) [singable] (Lau Kanen) , "Het scheepje", copyright © 2013, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ENG English (Sharon Krebs) , "The little ship", copyright © 2013, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Pierre Mathé) , "Le petit bateau", copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Gianni Franceschi) , "La barchetta", copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

Text added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:01:52
Line count: 24
Word count: 109

The little ship
Language: English  after the German (Deutsch) 
A little ship quietly travels
Its path along the current.
Those travelling on it are silent
For they do not know each other.

What is it that from beneath his pelts
The brown forester1 pulls out?
It is a horn that softly sounds:
The shore echoes [its sounding].

From his walking stick
Another unscrews prong and possessions,
And mixes the tones of a flute
Into the droning of the horn.

The maiden who had sat so bashfully,
As if she were incapable of speech,
Now lifts her voice in song
To the sounds of the horn and the flute.

The rowers2, too, bestir themselves
With rhythmic strokes.
The ship beneath them flies
Rocked by melody.

The shore is reached with a hard bump,
The passengers [prepare to] go their separate ways into the land:
"When, brethren, will we meet again
Upon a little ship?"

View original text (without footnotes)
1 in some versions of Uhland: "fieldsman" (Mendelssohn uses "fieldsman" in an older spelling)
2 in some versions of Uhland: "shipmen"; Mendelssohn: "oars"

Authorship

  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to English copyright © 2013 by Sharon Krebs, (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

 

Text added to the website: 2013-07-03 00:00:00
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:05:16
Line count: 24
Word count: 144