Sei gesegnet ohne Ende

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Sei gesegnet ohne Ende (English translation: Be Blessed Without End), also known as the ″Kernstock-Hymne″, is a German language song that was the national anthem of Austria from 1929 until 1938. Written by Ottokar Kernstock, it was sung to the famous tune of Gott erhalte Franz den Kaiser by Joseph Haydn that had, since 1922, also been used by the Weimar Republic as its national anthem, the Deutschlandlied.

History of the anthem[edit]

The first but unofficial anthem of the First Austrian Republic was Deutschösterreich, du herrliches Land ("German-Austria, you Glorious Land"). Written in 1920 by Karl Renner and set to music by Wilhelm Kienzl, the patriotic song was not able to successfully compete against the former imperial anthem and especially the latter's famous tune by Joseph Haydn.[1]

In 1929, a new anthem was introduced that was sung to this popular tune and whose text stemmed from Ottokar Kernstock, who had written it in 1920.[1] The third verse of the poem was, however, excluded from the official status as national anthem. The song remained in use in both the First Republic and the Federal State of Austria but became obsolete in 1938 when Austria joined the German Reich.

„Sei gesegnet ohne Ende“ was not the only proposal for a new Austrian national anthem. Anton Wildgans asked Richard Strauss to set one of his poems, called Österreichisches Lied ("Austrian Song"), to music. Although Strauss actually did compose the music to the poem,[2] it did not become popular. Excerpts of the poem are:

German[3] English

Wo sich der ewige Schnee
Spiegelt im Alpensee,
Sturzbach am Fels zerstäubt, […]
Österreich heißt das Land!
Da er’s mit gnädiger Hand
Schuf, und so reichbegabt,
Gott hat es liebgehabt!

Where the eternal snow
Reflects in the alpine lake,
Where the torrent nebulizes at a rock, […]
This land is called Austria!
As He created it with a gracious
Hand, and so gifted,
God dearly loved it!

The introduction of the Kernstockhymne actually led to chaos as everyone sang different lyrics to the same tune, depending on their political standpoints. The school council of Vienna decreed that people should sing Deutschland über alles, the ministry of education demanded everyone to only sing the Kernstockhymne. Consequently, people sang the anthem that fitted their personal political views: the former imperial anthem, the Kernstockhymne, or the Deutschlandlied which often led to dissonance when the national anthem was sung publicly.[4]

Since 1936, it had become customary to also sing the Lied der Jugend as part of the national anthem, thus honouring the murdered chancellor Engelbert Dollfuß.

As the Kernstockhymne had never gained popularity, no attempt was made to reinstall it as national anthem after World War II.

Lyrics[edit]

German lyrics of the anthem English lyrics of the anthem German lyrics of the original poem English lyrics of the original poem

1. Sei gesegnet ohne Ende,
Heimaterde wunderhold!
Freundlich schmücken dein Gelände
Tannengrün und Ährengold.
Deutsche Arbeit, ernst und ehrlich,
Deutsche Liebe, zart und weich,
Vaterland, wie bist du herrlich,
Gott mit dir, mein Österreich!

1. Blessed be endlessly,
Wonderful native land!
Green firs and golden spikes
Friendly adorn thy lands.
German labour, earnest and honest,
German love, tender and soft,
Fatherland, how marvelous thou art,
God with thee, my Austria!

1. Sei gesegnet ohne Ende,
Deutsche Heimat, wunderhold!
Freundlich schmücken dein Gelände
Tannengrün und Ährengold.
Deutsche Arbeit, ernst und redlich,
Deutsche Liebe, zart und weich,
Vaterland, wie bist du herrlich,
Gott mit dir, Deutschösterreich!

1. Blessed be endlessly,
Wonderful German land!
Green firs and golden spikes
Friendly adorn thy lands.
German labour, earnest and honorable,
German love, tender and soft,
Fatherland, how marvelous thou art,
God with thee, German-Austria!

2. Keine Willkür, keine Knechte,
Off′ne Bahn für jede Kraft!
Gleiche Pflichten, gleiche Rechte,
Frei die Kunst und Wissenschaft!
Starken Mutes, festen Blickes,
Trotzend jedem Schicksalsstreich
Steig empor den Pfad des Glückes,
Gott mit dir, mein Österreich!

2. No tyranny, no serfs,
Open way for every force!
Equal duties, equal rights,
Free art and science!
Strong bravery, firm look,
Despite every stroke of fate
Go up along the path of happiness,
God with thee, my Austria!

2. Keine Willkür, keine Knechte,
Off′ne Bahn für jede Kraft!
Gleiche Pflichten, gleiche Rechte,
Frei die Kunst und Wissenschaft!
Starken Mutes, festen Blickes,
Trotzend jedem Schicksalsstreich
Steig empor den Pfad des Glückes,
Gott mit dir, Deutschösterreich!

2. No tyranny, no serfs,
Open way for every force!
Equal duties, equal rights,
Free art and science!
Strong bravery, firm look,
Despite every stroke of fate
Go up along the path of happiness,
God with thee, German-Austria!

-- --

3. Osterland bist du geheißen,
Und von Osten kommt das Licht.
Nacht und Finsternis zerreißen,
Wenn es durch die Wolken bricht.
Seht verklärten Angesichtes
Den ersehnten Tag vor euch!
Land der Freiheit, Land des Lichtes,
Gott mit dir, Deutschösterreich!

3. Thou art called land of the East,
And from the East comes the light.
Whenever it breaks through the clouds,
Night and darkness are torn apart.
See with transfigured countenance
The long-awaited day!
Land of liberty, land of light,
God be with you, German Austria!

4. Lasst, durch keinen Zwist geschieden,
Uns nach einem Ziele schau′n,
Lasst in Eintracht und in Frieden
Uns am Heil der Zukunft bau′n!
Uns′res Volkes starke Jugend
Werde ihren Ahnen gleich,
Sei gesegnet, Heimaterde,
Gott mit dir, mein Österreich!

4. Let′s, through no discord divided,
Look at one goal,
Let′s in concord and in peace
Build on the boon of future!
Strong youth of our people
Becomes like its forefathers,
Blessed be, native land,
God with thee, my Austria!

4. Lasst, durch keinen Zwist geschieden,
Uns nach einem Ziele schau′n,
Lasst in Eintracht und in Frieden
Uns am Heil der Zukunft bau′n!
Uns′res Volkes starke Jugend
Werde ihren Ahnen gleich,
Sei gesegnet, Heimaterde,
Gott mit dir, mein Österreich!

4. Let′s, through no discord divided,
Look at one goal,
Let′s in concord and in peace
Build on the boon of future!
Strong youth of our people
Becomes like its forefathers,
Blessed be, native land,
God with thee, my Austria!

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Bruckmüller, Ernst. Nation Österreich. Kulturelles Bewußtsein und gesellschaftlich-politische Prozesse. Wien, Köln, Graz: Böhlau-Verlag, 1996. Page 102.
  2. ^ Trenner 259, Asow op. 78; world premier on 10 January 1930 in the Großer Saal des Wiener Musikvereins.
  3. ^ Beck, Jürgen (ed.). Gesammelte Werke, Anton Wildgans. Altenmünster: Jazzybee-Verlag, 2013.
  4. ^ Steinbauer, Johannes. Land der Hymnen: eine Geschichte der Bundeshymnen Österreichs. Wien: Sonderzahl-Verlag, 1997. Page 82.

External links[edit]