by Eduard Mörike (1804 - 1875)
Translation © by Ferdinando Albeggiani

Elfenlied
Language: German (Deutsch) 
Available translation(s): CAT ENG FRE FRE ITA ITA
[Bei Nacht im Dorf]1 der Wächter rief: 
    Elfe!
Ein ganz kleines Elfchen im Walde schlief --
    Wohl um die Elfe! --
Und meint, es rief ihm aus dem Tal 
Bei seinem Namen die Nachtigall,
Oder Silpelit hätt' ihm gerufen.
Reibt sich der Elf' die Augen aus,
Begibt sich vor sein Schneckenhaus
Und ist als wie ein trunken Mann,
Sein Schläflein war nicht voll getan,
Und humpelt also tippe tapp
Durch's Haselholz in's Tal hinab,
Schlupft an der Mauer hin so dicht,
Da sitzt der Glühwurm Licht an Licht.
»Was sind das helle Fensterlein?
Da drin wird eine Hochzeit sein:
Die Kleinen sitzen bei'm Mahle,
Und treiben's in dem Saale.
Da guck' ich wohl ein wenig 'nein!« 
-- Pfui, stößt den Kopf an harten Stein!
Elfe, gelt, du hast genug?
    Gukuk! Gukuk!

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Hetsch: "Des Nachts im Dorfe"; further changes may exist not shown above.

Authorship

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

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

  • CAT Catalan (Català) (Salvador Pila) , "Cançó de l’elf", copyright © 2019, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ENG English (Sharon Krebs) , "Elf song", copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "Chant de l'elfe", copyright © 2011, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • FRE French (Français) (Stéphane Goldet) (Pierre de Rosamel) , "Comptine de l'elfe", copyright © 2012, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Ferdinando Albeggiani) , "Canto dell'elfo", copyright © 2013, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ITA Italian (Italiano) (Gianni Franceschi) , "Canzone dell'Elfo", copyright © 2015, (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: 2015-04-10 19:00:39
Line count: 23
Word count: 128

Canto dell'elfo
Language: Italian (Italiano)  after the German (Deutsch) 
A notte la guardia notturna grida:
   "Undici"!
"Undici", il piccolo elfo, dormiva nel bosco
   proprio alle undici!--
E immagina che dalla valle 
lo chiami per nome l'usignolo, 
o che lo abbia chiamato Silpelit.
"Undici" si stropiccia gli occhi,
si affaccia fuori dal suo guscio di chiocciola
e si comporta come un ubriaco,
non ha dormito abbastanza,
e inizia a saltellare: tip, tap,
scende a valle fra i noccioli,
rasentando i muri
dove abita la lucciola, assai luminosa.
"Perché è illuminata la finestrella?
Sarà forse un pranzo di nozze:
Staranno a banchettare
e a fare festa nella sala. 
Voglio spiare un poco là dentro!"
-- Ohi, batte il capo sulla dura pietra!
Ne hai abbastanza, piccolo elfo?
Cucù! Cucù!

Authorship

  • Translation from German (Deutsch) to Italian (Italiano) copyright © 2013 by Ferdinando Albeggiani, (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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Text added to the website: 2013-09-01 00:00:00
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:05:19
Line count: 23
Word count: 117