• Original Translation

Nacht und Traume Set by Franz Schubert

Frederic Edwin Church (1865) - Detail from Aurora Borealis

Holy night, descending softly,

Descending, too, are our dreams,

Like moonlight through a darkened room,

Through the depths of a man`s breast.

He listens with elation;

When Night starts to fade, he cries:

Come back, holy night,

Return, sweetest dreams, return!

Translation © David B. Gosselin

*To learn more about the relationship between poetry and lieder, rightly called the "Rosetta Stone" of poetry, we recommend the following resources:

- Brahms' Settings of Poetry from the Davidsbuendler website

- Brahms' advice for composers Part 1 by music scholar Fred Haight


By Matthäus von Collin (1779-1824)

Heil’ge Nacht, du sinkest nieder;

Nieder wallen auch die Träume,

Wie dein Mondlicht durch die Räume,

Durch der Menschen stille Brust.

Die belauschen sie mit Lust;

Rufen, wenn der Tag erwacht:

Kehre wieder, heil’ge Nacht!

Holde Träume, kehret wieder!