28 December 2013

Der Feind ist viel, ein große Rott

Here is my translation of "Der Feind ist viel, ein große Rott" (B. Waldis, 1553), a hymn based on Psalm 3, Domine quid multiplicati. As usual, Waldis provides the original melody along with the text. Note that the meter suggests that he first based the text on the tune "Mag ich Unglück nit widerstahn."

HOW num’rous is the foe, O Lord!
                       How great the horde,
  Intent to harm and halt me.
They say no help will come from Thee
                                       To rescue me
  And for such faith they fault me.
But Thou wilt be continually
My shield and crown, my glorious gown—
  And Thou wilt high exalt me!

2. I lift my voice, and call and cry
                         To God on high.
  Who leaves me not forsaken.
In Him I, slumbering, confide,
                                And safe abide
  Till He my soul awaken.
Although a host around me boast
Arrayed with rage their war to wage,
  He leaves their forces shaken.

3. Arise, O Lord my God, this hour,
                       Stir up Thy pow’r,
  Come help me now, my Savior,
And crush the counsels of the proud,
                              Ungodly crowd
  Lay low their vain endeavor!
For all the meek who faithful seek
Shall find with Thee their remedy
And blessing of Thy favor.

4. For this we give Thee, mighty God,
                           Our thanks and laud,
  O Father and Creator,
Who sent’st Thy Son to us on earth
                          To be by birth 
  True Man and share our nature,
Who by His blood, our highest good,
Hath raised us all from Adam’s fall,
  And saved His perished creature.

Translation © 2013 Matthew Carver.

Der Feind ist viel, ein grosse Rott,
O Herre Gott,
die sich gegn mich verpflichten,
Sprechen, bei dir sei gar kein Heil,
für meine Seel,
Damit mich gar vernichten.
Aber du willt stets sein mein Schild,
der mich ergetzt, zum Ehren setzt,
wirst mir mein Haupt aufrichten.

2. Zum HERRN ruf ich mit meiner Stimm,
und schrei zu ihm,
gar bald er mich erhöret.
Ob ich entschlaf in meiner Sach,
wann ich erwach,
so bleib ich unbeköhret,
Ob schon ein Heer liegt runds umher,
sich hoch aufbrüst und ist gerüst,
der Herr sie doch verstöret.

3. Auf, Herr mein Gott, itz bald zur Stund,
hilf mir jetzund,
wöllst deine Macht erregen,
und den Rat der gottlosen Schaar
zerschmettern gar,
ihrn Stolz und Hoffart legen,
dann bei dir findt ein jedes Kind,
das dich ersucht, der Hülfen Frucht,
und deiner Gnaden Segen.

4. Des dankn wir dir, O Vater groß,
ohn alle Moß,
der du Himmel und Erden
geschafen hast so breit und weit,
zur Gnadenzeit
dein Sohn hast Mensch lan werden,
sein Blut uns all von Adams Fall
hat aufgericht, und dir verpflicht,
erlöst von Todsgefährden.


JForster said...

I'm trying to track down the Waldis Psalter, and specifically the music included in it. How did you find this piece? Can is there a version in print, or online? Thanks.

Joseph Forster

Matt Carver (Matthaeus Glyptes) said...

Dear Joseph. I searched long for the original psalter, as it has been my intent for several years to publish a bilingual edition (after reading Zorn's overview of it). The copy at St. Pancras in London proved too difficult to get, and cost too much to have copied out and sent via CD-ROM (their only option), so I inquired with the German library system and they were kind enough to move it up in the queue and notify me upon completion. It is available from the German library system via zvdd.de. There are also part-books written some time later, by Ebeling I think; the settings there are quite enhanced, but I have forgotten the location of those. I hope to have my bilingual edition of Waldis' Psalter ready for editing within a year.

JForster said...

Wonderful! How can I get a copy when it is done?
I wasn't making progress on the German library website. But if you're working on it, that's good enough for me.
I've been familiar with the Genevan Psalter for a long time and I've been working with the Becker Psalter as well, and I was fascinated with the early date of this Waldis Psalter.
Please let me know how I can obtain a copy when you finish. Thanks for replying!

Joseph Forster

Matt Carver (Matthaeus Glyptes) said...

If you can give me some sort of contact information, I will follow up on this. Thanks Joseph.