Friedrich Schiller

(10 November 1759 – 9 May 1805 / Marbach, Württemberg)

Hymn To Joy - Poem by Friedrich Schiller

Joy, thou goddess, fair, immortal,
Offspring of Elysium,
Mad with rapture, to the portal
Of thy holy fame we come!
Fashion's laws, indeed, may sever,
But thy magic joins again;
All mankind are brethren ever
'Neath thy mild and gentle reign.

CHORUS.
Welcome, all ye myriad creatures!
Brethren, take the kiss of love!
Yes, the starry realms above
Hide a Father's smiling features!

He, that noble prize possessing--
He that boasts a friend that's true,
He whom woman's love is blessing,
Let him join the chorus too!
Aye, and he who but one spirit
On this earth can call his own!
He who no such bliss can merit,
Let him mourn his fate alone!

CHORUS.
All who Nature's tribes are swelling
Homage pay to sympathy;
For she guides us up on high,
Where the unknown has his dwelling.

From the breasts of kindly Nature
All of joy imbibe the dew;
Good and bad alike, each creature
Would her roseate path pursue.
'Tis through her the wine-cup maddens,
Love and friends to man she gives!
Bliss the meanest reptile gladdens,--
Near God's throne the cherub lives!

CHORUS.
Bow before him, all creation!
Mortals, own the God of love!
Seek him high the stars above,--
Yonder is his habitation!

Joy, in Nature's wide dominion,
Mightiest cause of all is found;
And 'tis joy that moves the pinion,
When the wheel of time goes round;
From the bud she lures the flower--
Suns from out their orbs of light;
Distant spheres obey her power,
Far beyond all mortal sight.

CHORUS.
As through heaven's expanse so glorious
In their orbits suns roll on,
Brethren, thus your proud race run,
Glad as warriors all-victorious!

Joy from truth's own glass of fire
Sweetly on the searcher smiles;
Lest on virtue's steeps he tire,
Joy the tedious path beguiles.
High on faith's bright hill before us,
See her banner proudly wave!
Joy, too, swells the angels' chorus,--
Bursts the bondage of the grave!

CHORUS.
Mortals, meekly wait for heaven
Suffer on in patient love!
In the starry realms above,
Bright rewards by God are given.

To the Gods we ne'er can render
Praise for every good they grant;
Let us, with devotion tender,
Minister to grief and want.
Quenched be hate and wrath forever,
Pardoned be our mortal foe--
May our tears upbraid him never,
No repentance bring him low!

CHORUS.
Sense of wrongs forget to treasure--
Brethren, live in perfect love!
In the starry realms above,
God will mete as we may measure.

Joy within the goblet flushes,
For the golden nectar, wine,
Every fierce emotion hushes,--
Fills the breast with fire divine.
Brethren, thus in rapture meeting,
Send ye round the brimming cup,--
Yonder kindly spirit greeting,
While the foam to heaven mounts up!

CHORUS.
He whom seraphs worship ever;
Whom the stars praise as they roll,
Yes to him now drain the bowl
Mortal eye can see him never!

Courage, ne'er by sorrow broken!
Aid where tears of virtue flow;
Faith to keep each promise spoken!
Truth alike to friend and foe!
'Neath kings' frowns a manly spirit!--
Brethren, noble is the prize--
Honor due to every merit!
Death to all the brood of lies!

CHORUS.
Draw the sacred circle closer!
By this bright wine plight your troth
To be faithful to your oath!
Swear it by the Star-Disposer!

Safety from the tyrant's power!
Mercy e'en to traitors base!
Hope in death's last solemn hour!
Pardon when before His face!
Lo, the dead shall rise to heaven!
Brethren hail the blest decree;
Every sin shall be forgiven,
Hell forever cease to be!

CHORUS.
When the golden bowl is broken,
Gentle sleep within the tomb!
Brethren, may a gracious doom
By the Judge of man be spoken!


Comments about Hymn To Joy by Friedrich Schiller

  • Fabrizio Frosini (3/11/2016 5:03:00 AM)


    'Ode to Joy' in German:

    'An die Freude'

    Freude, schöner Götterfunken,
    Tochter aus Elysium,
    Wir betreten feuertrunken,
    Himmlische, dein Heiligtum!
    Deine Zauber binden wieder
    Was die Mode streng geteilt (was der Mode Schwerd geteilt):
    Alle Menschen werden Brüder (Bettler werden Fürstenbrüder)
    Wo dein sanfter Flügel weilt.

    Wem der große Wurf gelungen
    Eines Freundes Freund zu sein;
    Wer ein holdes Weib errungen
    Mische seinen Jubel ein!
    Ja, wer auch nur eine Seele
    Sein nennt auf dem Erdenrund!
    Und wer's nie gekonnt, der stehle
    Weinend sich aus diesem Bund!

    Freude trinken alle Wesen
    An den Brüsten der Natur;
    Alle Guten, alle Bösen
    Folgen ihrer Rosenspur.
    Küsse gab sie uns und Reben,
    Einen Freund, geprüft im Tod;
    Wollust ward dem Wurm gegeben
    und der Cherub steht vor Gott.

    Froh, wie seine Sonnen fliegen
    Durch des Himmels prächt'gen Plan
    Laufet, Brüder, eure Bahn,
    Freudig, wie ein Held zum siegen.

    Seid umschlungen, Millionen!
    Diesen Kuß der ganzen Welt!
    Brüder, über'm Sternenzelt
    Muß ein lieber Vater wohnen.
    Ihr stürzt nieder, Millionen?
    Ahnest du den Schöpfer, Welt?
    Such' ihn über'm Sternenzelt!
    Über Sternen muß er wohnen.
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  • (5/7/2007 6:14:00 AM)


    I agree with Oscar Rodriguez. This poem is so powerful in the German language that one's heart swells, but loses much of its impact in English. (Report) Reply

  • (6/19/2006 12:25:00 AM)


    I woud like to have the poem in Deutsch (German) (Report) Reply

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Read poems about / on: joy, nature, heaven, faith, sympathy, power, truth, friend, fire, god, courage, magic, death, grief, hate, flower, fate, sorrow, star, woman



Poem Submitted: Thursday, January 1, 2004



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