Das Lied Der Linde (English translation)
Old Linden tree in the holy gorge,
Reverently I touch your trunk,
Charlemagne you have already seen,
When the Greatest comes, you'll still be standing.
Thirty ells measures your gray trunk,
All German lands' oldest tree,
Wars, hunger sawest, epidemics misery,
New life again, new death.
For a long time your trunk has been hollow,
Horse and horseman you bore once well,
Until the gulf gently with mild hand
Wreathed a large band around your forehead.
Image and book do not describe your crown
All branches have you already lost
Up to the last two, that powerfully branch,
Leaves joyfully rise into the air.
Old Linden tree that you know everything,
Impart us kindly your spirit
Send to becoming your prophetic vision,
Bear witness to Germany's and the world's fate!
Great Emperor Karl (Charles), ordained in Rome,
Cornerstone you shall remain for German time
A hundred and sixty, seven year period,
Germany is wounded to the marrow.
For foreign peoples your son labours as a soccage servant,
Does and doesn't do, what serves their slaves,
Terribly has torn apart enemy's hand
One blood, one language band.
Sap, stomach, sap of German life juice,
Until your strength will come to an end once,
If the heart suffers, the whole body wastes away,
Germany's misery is the ruin of the world. *)
Harvests dwindle, but the wars do not,
And the brother fights against the brother,
Armed with scythe and shovel,
When musket and sword got lost.
The poor become rich of money quickly,
But the fast wealth turns to ashes,
Poorer all with the greater treasure.
Lower people, narrower even the place.
As the rulers' thrones abolished,
Ruling becomes game and passion,
Until the day comes when everyone believes himself damned,
Whoever is appointed to an office.
Farmer makes hay until turning day,
All his efforts are only a washout,
Word of warning falls on desert sand,
Only folly finds listeners.
Who has the most sins,
Feels being judge and highest council,
When the blood reeks, the animal only gets wilder,
Robbery becomes work and murder becomes greed.
Rome smashes the shepherd's staff like cattle,
Does not spare the old man with the silver hair,
Over bodies the Supreme must flee
And persecuted move from place to place.
Godforsaken he appears, is it not,
Rock-solid in the faith, true to the duty,
He does not waver in distress,
Brings the God dispute before the near court.
Winter comes, three days of darkness,
Thunder and lightning and the crack of the earth,
Pray at home, do not leave the house!
Do not even look out of the window to see the horror!
A candle alone all the time,
Provided that it wants to burn, gives you light.
Poisonous breath penetrates from dusty night,
Black plague, worst human battle.
The same threatens all earth-born,
But the good die a blissful death.
Many abiders wonderfully stay
free of breath spasm and black death hazard.
A big city is swallowed by mud,
Another fights with fire,
All cities are dead silent,
At the Vienna Stephansplatz grows dill.
If you count all people in the world,
You will find that one third is missing,
What still remains, look in each country,
Half of them have lost their mind.
Like a rudderless ship in the storm,
At the mercy of every reef,
Staggers around the swarm of one-day rulers,
makes citizens even poorer than poor.
Because misery's only star of hope
One better day is endlessly far away.
"Saviour, send him whom you have to send!"
Sounds it anxiously from the human breast.
Is the earth suddenly taking another course,
Is a new star of hope rising?
"All is lost!" Here it still sounds,
"Everything is saved," Vienna already sings.
Yes, from the east comes the strong hero,
Bringing order to the confused world.
White flowers around the heart of the Lord,
The brave gladly follows his call.
All troublemakers he rounds up in pairs,
German law for the German Empire he writes,
Colourful stranger, unwelcome guest,
Flee the fields that you have not ploughed.
God's hero, an inseparable tie
You forge around all German land.
The exiled man you lead to Rome,
A cathedral witnesses great imperial consecration.
Praise to the twenty-first Council,
That shows their highest aim to the peoples,
And guaranteed by strict approach to life,
That rich and poor no longer choke each other now.
German name, you suffered seriously,
Again the old honour shines around you,
Grows around the entwined double branch,
Many a guest seeks its shade.
Dante's and Cervante's foreign vernacular
Conversant already with it is the German child,
And on the Tiber - like on the Ebro's shores
The brown friend of Hermann's land is positioned.
When the angelic shepherd of the peoples
Like Antonius becomes a wanderer,
Preaches barfoot to the lost ones,
New spring smiles at the whole world.
All churches in agreement and united,
One herds only shepherd appears.
Crescent gradually gives way to crosses all,
Black country shines in splendour of faith.
Rich harvests I see every year,
A great multitude of wise men,
Epidemic plagues and wars are distant from the world,
Anyone who experiences the time is highly thrilled.
This tells German man and child
Suffering with the country the old Linden tree,
That haughtiness may not be the last straw,
The righteous shall not despair!