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Lieder and art song resource guide: Texts and translations

This guide is intended to assist in locating scores and materials about art songs and Lieder.
Last Updated: Feb 22, 2021 2:40 PM

Song texts and translations

Books of song texts are all shelved together in the general collection. Their call numbers begin with ML 54.6. Some give a line-by-line translation and/or pronunciation; others provide only the text and translation. You can search or browse these books in person by looking through the books in the stacks, or in the Classic Catalog by typing "songs--texts" as a subject. Some books include texts for songs by multiple composers, and some are dedicated to the works of only one composer. Some places to start:

  • Miller, Philip L., ed., trans. The Ring of Words: An Anthology of Song Texts. Garden City, New York: Doubleday, 1963. 
    ML 54.6 .R5

    Includes an index of composers, song titles, and first lines. Songs are listed in the table of contents by language and then by poet. Covers the standard art song repertoire and include songs in German, French, Italian, Russian, Scandinavian, and Spanish, with English translation of each.

  • LeVan, Timothy. Masters of the Italian Art Song: Word-by-word and Poetic Translations of the Complete Songs for Voice and Piano. Metuchen, NJ: The Scarecrow Press, 1990. 
    ML 54.6 .M34

    LeVan, Timothy. Masters of the French Art Song: Translations of the Complete Songs of Chausson, Debussy, Duparc, Faure and Ravel. Metuchen, NJ: The Scarecrow Press, 1991. 
    ML 54.6 .M33

    Both books of translations by LeVan print the original text with a word-by-word English translation beneath the original, with a poetic translation in parentheses.

  • Fischer-Dieskau, Dietrich. The Fischer-Dieskau Book of Lieder. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1977. 
    Reference ML 54.6 F5F5

    Over 750 German texts with facing English translations; chosed and introduded by Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau. Indexed by composer, poet, title, and first line.