Walther von der Vogelweide

(1170 - 1230 / Germany)

Walther von der Vogelweide
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Vogelweide, a poet and minnesinger(a singer of love songs), is one of the most celebrated of the Medievil German poets, the main sources of information about him are his own poems and occasional references by contemporary Minnesingers. It is clear from the title (Herr, Sir) given in these references, that he was of noble birth; but it is equally clear from his name Vogelweide (meaning: a gathering place or preserve of birds) that he belonged not to the higher nobility, who took their titles from castles or villages, but to the nobility of service.

Tirol appears to be his place of birth and had become a center of poetry and art. It was here that the young poet learned his craft ... more »

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Best Poem of Walther von der Vogelweide

Ah! Where Are Hours Departed Fled? (Excerpt)

Ah! where are hours departed fled?
Is life a dream, or true indeed?
Did all my heart hath fashioned
From fancy's visitings proceed?
Yes! I have slept; and now unknown
To me the things best known before:
The land, the people, once mine own,
Where are they? -- they are here no more:
My boyhood's friends, all aged, worn,
Despoil'd the woods, the fields, of home,
Only the stream flows on forlorn;
(Alas! that e'er such change should come!)
And he knew me once so well
Salutes me now as one estranged:
The very earth to me can tell
Of nought but things ...

Read the full of Ah! Where Are Hours Departed Fled? (Excerpt)