Tag Archives: German

this pressed: German banknotes being used as wallpaper at the height of Weimar hyperinflation, 1923 — OnThisDay & Facts


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Bayreuth Festival


Bayreuth Festival

Bayreuth, Germany, is home to this annual festival devoted to the performance of operas by Richard Wagner. Wagner launched the festival in 1876 to showcase a variety of German music and did not intend for his compositions to be the focus. The event was plagued by financial problems in its early years, but survived through state intervention and the support of influential Wagnerians, including Ludwig II of Bavaria and Adolf Hitler. Who did Hitler beg—unsuccessfully—to lead the festival? More… Discuss

Brahms, J. – Tragic Overture, Op. 81 (Tragische Ouvertüre): great compositions/performances


Brahms, J. – Tragic Overture, Op. 81

today’s birthday: Friedrich Nietzsche (1844)


Friedrich Nietzsche (1844)

Nietzsche was a German philosopher whose critiques of contemporary culture, religion, and philosophy centered on a basic question regarding the foundation of values and morality. He passionately rejected Western bourgeois civilization and regarded Christian civilization as decadent. Denouncing its “slave morality,” he looked to the “superman,” the creator of a new heroic morality that would consciously affirm life and life values. What is Nietzsche’s concept of “perspectivism”? More… Discuss

this day in the yesteryear: Two Plus Four Agreement Signed in Moscow (1990)


Two Plus Four Agreement Signed in Moscow (1990)

The Two Plus Four Agreement, also known as the Treaty on the Final Settlement With Respect to Germany, was the final peace treaty negotiated between West Germany and East Germany—the “Two”—and the four powers that occupied Germany at the end of World War II: France, the UK, the US, and the Soviet Union. The treaty paved the way for the German reunification, which took place less than a month later, on October 3. What rights did the four powers renounce under the treaty’s terms? More… Discuss

today’s birthday: Ferdinand Porsche (1875)


Ferdinand Porsche (1875)

Despite having little formal education in engineering. Porsche showed enormous natural aptitude. After working in the automotive industry for some time, the Austrian formed his own firm and began designing vehicles on commission—one of which resulted in the original Volkswagen Beetle. His success in making Hitler‘s vision for a “people’s car” a reality led to further commissions, and Porsche went on to design various military vehicles for the Germans. How did this affect him after the war? More… Discuss

today’s birthday: Mata Hari (1876)


Mata Hari (1876)

Born Margaretha Geertruida Zelle, this Dutch courtesan, dancer, and alleged spy went by the stage name Mata Hari. During World War I, she had intimate relationships with high-ranking Allied military officers and government officials. Though details are unclear, she apparently spied for Germany from 1916. In January 1917, French intelligence intercepted German messages about a spy they identified as Mata Hari, and she was executed by the French on espionage charges. What happened to her corpse?

this day in the yesteryear: Teutonic Knights Defeated at Battle of Grunwald (1410)


Teutonic Knights Defeated at Battle of Grunwald (1410)

Early in the 15th century, the Teutonic Order, a German military religious order founded during the Third Crusade, sought to expand its influence over Lithuania and Poland. Though its purported mission was to spread Christianity, it invaded the already Christian nations and was defeated at the Battle of Grunwald. Afterward, the Order’s strength waned, and today it exists only as a clerical organization. How was the memory of the Battle of Grunwald used as propaganda during World War I? More… Discuss

The Mohs Scale of Mineral Hardness


The Mohs Scale of Mineral Hardness

The Mohs scale of mineral hardness characterizes the scratch resistance of various minerals, through the ability of a harder material to scratch a softer one and not be scratched by it. While the varying hardness of stones was likely first explored around 300 BCE, German mineralogist Friedrich Mohs devised his scale in 1812. It uses 10 standards ranging from talc, the softest, with a value of 1, to diamond, the hardest, with a value of 10. Where does a fingernail fall on the Mohs scale? More… Discuss

writer of the day: Rainer Maria Rilke (the panther)


Rainer Maria Rilke

Rilke is generally considered the German language‘s greatest 20th century lyric poet. His compositions are generally characterized by striking visual imagery, musicality, and a preponderant use of nouns. His writings include one novel, the semi-autobiographical The Notebooks of Malte Laurids Brigge; several collections of poetry, among them Sonnets to Orpheus and Duino Elegies; and several volumes of correspondence. How did a rose thorn supposedly hasten his death? More… Discuss

The Panther, by Klaus J. Peter.

the panther, A translation by Stephen Cohn:

The bars which pass and strike across his gaze
have stunned his sight: the eyes have lost their hold.
To him it seems there are athousand bars,
a thousand bars, and nothing else. No World
And pacing out that mean, constricted ground,
so quiet, supple, powerful his stride
is like a ritual dance performed around
the centre where his baffled will survives.

The silent shutter of his eye sometimes
slides open to admit some thing outside;
an image runs through each expectant limb
and penetrates his heart and dies

[youtube.com/watch?v=4rRV6L5YFJY]

Rainer Maria RILKE. Pour écrire un seul vers.

Pour écrire un seul vers

Pour écrire un seul vers, il faut avoir vu beaucoup de villes, d’hommes et de choses, il faut connaître les animaux, il faut sentir comment volent les oiseaux et savoir quel mouvement font les petites fleurs en s’ouvrant le matin. Il faut pouvoir repenser à des chemins dans des régions inconnues, à des rencontres inattendues, à des départs que l’on voyait longtemps approcher, à des jours d’enfance dont le mystère ne s’est pas encore éclairci, à ses parents qu’il fallait qu’on froissât lorsqu’ils vous apportaient une joie et qu’on ne la comprenait pas (c’était une joie faite pour un autre), à des maladies d’enfance qui commençaient si singulièrement, par tant de profondes et graves transformations, à des jours passés dans des chambres calmes et contenues, à des matins au bord de la mer, à la mer elle-même, à des mers, à des nuits de voyage qui frémissaient très haut et volaient avec toutes les étoiles, – et il ne suffit même pas de savoir penser à tout cela. Il faut avoir des souvenirs de beaucoup de nuits d’amour, dont aucune ne ressemblait à l’autre, de cris de femmes hurlant en mal d’enfant, et de légères, de blanches, de dormantes accouchées qui se refermaient. Il faut encore avoir été auprès de mourants, être resté assis auprès de morts, dans la chambre, avec la fenêtre ouverte et les bruits qui venaient par à-coups. Et il ne suffit même pas d’avoir des souvenirs. Il faut savoir les oublier quand ils sont nombreux, et il faut avoir la grande patience d’attendre qu’ils reviennent. Car les souvenirs eux-mêmes ne sont pas encore cela. Ce n’est que lorsqu’ils deviennent en nous sang, regard, geste, lorsqu’ils n’ont plus de nom et ne se distinguent plus de nous, ce n’est qu’alors qu’il peut arriver qu’en une heure très rare, du milieu d’eux, se lève le premier mot d’un vers.

Rainer Maria Rilke (1875 – 1926) – Les cahier de Malte Laurids Brigge.

Illustration : Rainer Maria Rilke, portrait de Helmut Westhoff.

Pour une écoute plurielle :

Chez Bernard Pivot, avec Laurent Terzieff,
homme de Poésie, de Parole, de Silence.
Homme du Sacré, du Visible et de l’Invisible.
Homme de Lumière !
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JDd2bzXXkvU

Avec la voix de Michel Aumont, extrait du film ‘Clara et moi’ d’Arnaud Viard (2004).
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t2NybPa4dXc

Avec Christine Mattei-Barraud. Réalisation : papidou1934.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XOOXiolhCnA

 

today’s holiday: Frankenmuth Bavarian Festival


Frankenmuth Bavarian Festival

Religious leaders in Bavaria sent a group of 15 Franconians to Michigan‘s Saginaw Valley in 1845 to set up a mission for the Indians. The settlement, known as Frankenmuth, retained its Bavarian roots and soon attracted other German immigrants. The Frankenmuth Bavarian Festival, held in June each year to celebrate the town’s German heritage, features a dance tent resembling a German biergarten with German dance bands and beverages, as well as farm tours, arts and crafts displays, a parade featuring the festival’s Bavarian Princess, and well-known entertainers of German origin. More… Discuss

today’s birthday: Anne Frank (1929)


Anne Frank (1929)

Anne Frank was a Jewish girl who, with her parents and sister, hid from the Nazis in a secret annex above her father’s Amsterdam office building for two years. Betrayed to the Germans in 1944, the Franks were deported to concentration camps, where all but father Otto perished. The diary Anne kept during their time in the annex, a work characterized by poignancy, humor, and tart observation, was later published and is now an international bestseller. Why did Otto edit out some parts of the diary? More… Discuss

RMS Lusitania Sunk by German U-Boat (1915)


RMS Lusitania Sunk by German U-Boat (1915)

The Lusitania was a British ocean liner that was sunk off the Irish coast—an area that the ship‘s crew had been warned to avoid—by a German U-boat during World War I. The ship’s submersion took only 18 minutes, and nearly 1,200 people died. Many questions surround the incident, including why the ship sank so quickly, what caused a secondary explosion, and whether or not the vessel was transporting contraband munitions. What did dive teams recently reveal about the ship’s cargo? More… Discuss

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THIS DAY IN THE YESTERYEAR: “BRITISH BANG” ON GERMAN ARCHIPELAGO (1947)


“British Bang” on German Archipelago (1947)

Heligoland is a pair of small German islands located in the North Sea, comprising the main island and the smaller island of Düne. The main island is commonly divided into three geographic sections, the last of which came into being in 1947, when the British Royal Navy detonated 6,700 tonnes of explosives on the island, actually changing its shape. The so-called British Bang was one of the largest non-nuclear single detonations in history. Why did the British bomb the island? More… Discuss

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Great Compositions/Performances: Beethoven Sonata No. 8 in C minor, Op. 13 “Pathétique” Live – Valentina Lisitsa



Great Compositions/Performances: Beethoven Sonata No. 8 in C minor Op. 13 “Pathétique” Live – Lisitsa

Special for my German fans! List of info for upcoming concerts in Deutschland in the next couple of weeks below . Munchen (Mar24), Stuttgart(Mar27), Heidelberg(Apr 7)
Do come ! For Beethoven and more :-)))
http://www.muenchenmusik.de/veranstal…
http://www.sks-russ.de/veranstaltunge…
http://heidelberger-fruehling.de/cont…

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MAX ERNST (1891)


Max Ernst (1891)

Having served in World War I, German-born French painter and sculptor Max Ernst at first gravitated toward the Dada movement, but the former student of psychology and philosophy eventually became one of the founders of surrealism. Apart from the medium of collage, for which he is well known, Ernst developed other devices to express his fantastic vision, like frottage, in which a drawing tool is rubbed over paper laid on a textured surface, and grattage, a technique consisting of what? More… Discuss

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Great Compositions/Performances: Valentina Lisitsa plays Beethoven’s Sonata No. 8 in C minor Op. 13 “Pathétique” Live –



From Valentina:  “FSpecial for my German fans! List of info for upcoming concerts in Deutschland in the next couple of weeks below . Munchen (Mar24), Stuttgart(Mar27), Heidelberg(Apr 7)
Do come ! For Beethoven and more :-)))
http://www.muenchenmusik.de/veranstal…
http://www.sks-russ.de/veranstaltunge…
http://heidelberger-fruehling.de/cont..

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Great Compositions/Performances: Schumann – Alexis Weissenberg (1967) Davidsbündlertänze, Op 6



The first edition is preceded by the following epigraph:

Alter Spruch:

In all und jeder Zeit
Verknüpft sich Lust und Leid:
Bleibt fromm in Lust und seid
Dem Leid mit Mut bereit

(Old saying:

In each and every age
joy and sorrow are mingled:
Remain pious in joy,
and be ready for sorrow with courage.)

The individual pieces, unnamed, have the following tempo markings, keys and ascriptions: Lebhaft (Vivace), G major, Florestan and Eusebius; Innig (Con intimo sentimento), B minor, Eusebius; Etwas hahnbüchen (Un poco impetuoso) (1st edition), Mit Humor (Con umore) (2nd edition), G major, Florestan (Hahnbüchen, now usually hahnebüchen (also hanebüchen or hagebüchen), is an untranslatable colloquialism roughly meaning “coarse” or “clumsy.” Apparently, it originally meant “made of hornbeam wood.” (See the article “Hanebüchen” in the German version of Wikipedia.) Ernest Hutcheson translated it as “cockeyed” in his book The Literature of the Piano.); Ungeduldig (Con impazienza), B minor, Florestan; Einfach (Semplice), D major, Eusebius; Sehr rasch und in sich hinein (Molto vivo, con intimo fervore) (1st edition), Sehr rasch (Molto vivo) (2nd edition), D minor, Florestan; Nicht schnell mit äußerst starker Empfindung (Non presto profondamente espressivo) (1st edition), Nicht schnell (Non presto) (2nd edition), G minor, Eusebius; Frisch (Con freschezza), C minor, Florestan; No tempo indication (metronome mark of 1 crotchet = 126) (1st edition), Lebhaft (Vivace) (2nd edition), C major, Florestan; Balladenmäßig sehr rasch (Alla ballata molto vivo) (1st edition), (“Sehr” and “Molto” capitalized in 2nd edition), D minor (ends major), Florestan; Einfach (Semplice), B minor-D major, Eusebius; Mit Humor (Con umore), B minor-E minor and major, Florestan; Wild und lustig (Selvaggio e gaio), B minor and major, Florestan and Eusebius; Zart und singend (Dolce e cantando), E♭ major, Eusebius; Frisch (Con freschezza), B♭ major – Etwas bewegter (poco piu mosso), E♭ major (return to opening section is optional), Florestan and Eusebius; Mit gutem Humor (Con buon umore) (in 2nd edition, “Con umore”), G major – Etwas langsamer (Un poco più lento), B minor; leading without a break into Wie aus der Ferne (Come da lontano), B major and minor (including a full reprise of No. 2), Florestan and Eusebius; and Nicht schnell (Non presto), C major, Eusebius.

 

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TODAY’S BIRTHDAY: PAUL EHRLICH (1854)


Paul Ehrlich (1854)

Ehrlich was a German bacteriologist who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1908 for his work on immunology. He is also noted for his work in hematology, cellular pathology, and the use of dyes in microscopy. Ehrlich coined the term “chemotherapy” and is credited with the first empirical observation of the blood-brain barrier. He also made notable contributions to the treatment of syphilis, stimulating research that led to the development of what widely-used drug? More…Discuss

 

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THIS DAY IN THE YESTERYEAR: ANSCHLUSS: GERMAN TROOPS OCCUPY AUSTRIA (1938)


Anschluss: German Troops Occupy Austria (1938)

Though the union of Austria and Germany was forbidden by the Treaty of Saint-Germain in 1919, the Nazis annexed Austria in 1938. The German term Anschluss—”annexation“—is most frequently used in reference to this event. When the Nazis entered Austria to enforce the Anschluss, they encountered no military opposition and quickly took control. The US, USSR, and UK signed a declaration proclaiming the Anschluss null and void in 1943, yet Austria did not regain its sovereignty until what year? More…Discuss

 

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TODAY’S BIRTHDAY: DOMINIQUE PIRE (1910)


Dominique Pire (1910)

Pire was a Belgian Dominican friar who devoted himself to helping the poor and to promoting peace. Witnessing the horrors of World War II, he became active in the anti-German resistance. After the war, he devoted himself to caring for the refugees, writing a book about the issue, founding aid organizations, and building villages to house displaced persons. He was rewarded for his humanitarian efforts with a Nobel Peace Prize in 1958. What “university” did he found thereafter? More…

 

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TODAY’S BIRTHDAY: CHRISTOPH GRAUPNER (1683)


Christoph Graupner (1683)

Graupner was a German harpsichordist and composer. After studying law at the University of Leipzig, he joined the Hamburg Opera alongside a young violinist named Handel, then became conductor to the court at Darmstadt. He won the prestigious cantorship at the Church of St. Thomas but was contractually bound to the court, so the cantorship went to another emerging composer—Johann Sebastian Bach. Graupner was a prolific writer and revered in his time. Why did he fall into obscurity? More…

 

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Arthur Fiedler & Boston Pops Medley – Here We Come A-Caroling/O Tannenbaum/I Saw Three Ships (1972)



“Here We Come A-wassailing” (or Here We Come A-caroling) is an English traditional Christmas carol and New Years song, apparently composed c. 1850. The old English wassail song refers to ‘wassailing’, or singing carols door to door wishing good health, while the a- is an archaic intensifying prefix; compare A-Hunting We Will Go and lyrics to The Twelve Days of Christmas (e.g., “Six geese a-laying”). According to Readers Digest; “the Christmas spirit often made the rich a little more generous than usual, and bands of beggars and orphans used to dance their way through the snowy streets of England, offering to sing good cheer and to tell good fortune if the householder would give them a drink from his wassail bowl or a penny or a pork pie or, let them stand for a few minutes beside the warmth of his hearth. The wassail bowl itself was a hearty combination of hot ale or beer, apples, spices and mead, just alcoholic enough to warm tingling toes and fingers of the singers”.

“O Tannenbaum”, or, in its English version, “O Christmas Tree“, is a Christmas carol of German origin. A Tannenbaum is a fir tree (German: die Tanne) or Christmas tree (der Weihnachtsbaum). Its evergreen qualities have long inspired musicians to write several “Tannenbaum” songs in German. The melody is an old folk tune (Lauriger Horatius). The first known “Tannenbaum” song lyrics date back to 1550. 

I Saw Three Ships” (Come Sailing In) is a traditional and popular Christmas carol from England. A variant of its parent tune “Greensleeves”, the earliest printed version of “I Saw Three Ships” is from the 17th century, possibly Derbyshire, and was also published by William B. Sandys in 1833. The lyrics mention the ships sailing into Bethlehem, but the nearest body of water is the Dead Sea about 20 miles away. The reference to three ships is thought to originate in the three ships that bore the purported relics of the Biblical magi to Cologne Cathedral in the 12th century.

 

Mozart – 3 German Dances, K. 605



Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart‘s Three German Dances (Teutsche), K. 605, are a set of three dance pieces composed by Mozart in 1791. Most of Mozart’s German Dances were written whilst he held the position of Kammermusicus (Imperial Chamber Composer) in Vienna. Mozart had been appointed to this position on the 1st December 1787 by Emperor Joseph II. The position was offered following the death of the former Kammermusicus, Christoph Willibald Gluck on 15 November 1787. In the position Mozart earned 800 Florins a year. One of the main obligations of his position was to write music for the court dances and balls that were held in the Redoutensaal (Public Ballrooms) of the Imperial Palace in Vienna. Mozart was an enthusiastic dancer, and produced many dance works, including ten sets of German dances. The first set was written in February 1787, before Mozart’s appointment to Kammermusicus. The other sets, excluding K. 611, were written between December 1787 and 1791, during which Mozart also wrote well known pieces such as Symphonies 40 and 41, and his opera Così fan tutte. These were mostly written in sets of six, with one set of four and one of twelve. Mozart composed this set of three Teutsche (German Dances) in the early months of 1791. The three dances of K. 605 are usually listed with the six dances of K. 600 and the four of K. 602 as Dreizehn deutsche Tänze (Thirteen German Dances). The pieces first appear on 12 February 1791 on Mozart’s List of all my Works, and are the penultimate set of German Dances that Mozart would compose before his death on 5 December 1791. The dances are scored for piccolo, two flutes, two oboes, two bassoons, two horns, two trumpets, timpani, violins I and II, violoncellos, and double basses. The third dance uniquely adds two posthorns and five sleigh bells tuned to C, E, F, G, and A (in ascending order). As the name “Three German Dances” suggests, this set of dances includes three individual dances. Each dance changes in instrumentation; only the violins play in all three dances. Each dance varies in character because of this, and each includes various features:
-Dance 1: The first dance begins with a series of repeating phrases that have a rich texture and are emphasised by the violins. Small, light fanfares can be heard throughout the piece being played by the trumpets. At the end of the dance the main theme from the beginning of the dance is repeated in a characterful ending.
-Dance 2: The main tune is once again played by the violins at the beginning, and this main tune is repeated, as is the next phrase. However, this repeat is played at a lower dynamic. The main tune then passes on to a characterful woodwind section. This is followed by an almost waltz-like phrase which has a clear, steady beat that could have easily been danced to.
-Dance 3 Schlittenfahrt: This dance may have been written independently of the others, as it is very different in style. Schlittenfahrt means “Sleigh Ride“; the use of sleigh bells in the piece clearly emphasises this. Before the sleigh bells enter, there is a series of repeating phrases that pass between the trumpets, woodwind and violins. The topography of the dynamics of the tuned sleigh bells make the piece seem like a sleigh ride, as the dynamics rise and fall like a sleigh would over snow. This is followed by a beautiful but simple trumpet solo that gives a very peaceful and clear atmosphere to the piece, like a winter’s day. The original repeating phrases then return, but end with a majestic fanfare from the trumpets that passes to the other instruments, then returns to the sleigh bells and trumpet solo again. The piece ends with a diminuendo of the trumpet solo.
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FREE .mp3 and .wav files of all Mozart’s music at: http://www.mozart-archiv.de/
FREE sheet music scores of any Mozart piece at:http://dme.mozarteum.at/DME/nma/start…
ALSO check out these cool sites: http://musopen.org/
and http://imslp.org/wiki/
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NOTE: I do not know who the performers of this are, nor the place and date of recording!!! Any suggestions are welcome.

 

Today’s Birthday: GEORGES-MARIE GUYNEMER (1894)


Georges-Marie Guynemer (1894)

A top French fighter ace during World War I and a national hero, Guynemer shot down 53 enemy planes and survived being shot down several times before he presumably died in a firefight on September 11, 1917. During an engagement that fateful day, Guynemer’s plane disappeared, reportedly shot down by a German pilot who was himself killed in action weeks later. To ease the blow of the loss of their young hero, French schoolchildren were taught that what had happened to him? More…

 

This Day in the Yesteryear: THE ROYAL AIR FORCE SINKS GERMAN BATTLESHIP TIRPITZ (1944)


The Royal Air Force Sinks German Battleship Tirpitz (1944)

The German Tirpitz, sister ship of the similarly ill-fatedBismarck, was the largest battleship ever built in Europe. Though she was sent to waters around German-occupied Norway and never really saw action in World War II, her mere presence threatened Allied convoys and tied up their naval resources. The Allies therefore launched numerous attacks on the Tirpitz in an effort to destroy her. After the Allies succeeded, her armor plates were supposedly repurposed for what use?More… Discuss

 

Valentina Lisitsa: Gute Nacht (from Winterreise) Schubert Liszt



From Valentin: 
“As a stranger I arrived
As a stranger I shall leave”
Those are the opening words on a heartbreaking journey of gloom, grief and utter loneliness.

One of Schubert‘s friends described the day Schuber performed his newly written song cycleWinterreise” ( Winter Jorney) :
“Schubert was gloomy and depressed, and when asked the reason replied,
“Come to Schober’s today and I will play you a cycle of terrifying songs; they have affected me more than has ever been the case with any other songs.” He then, with a voice full of feeling, sang the entire Winterreise for us. We were altogether dumbfounded by the sombre mood of these songs, and Schober said that one song only, “Der Lindenbaum”, had pleased him. Thereupon Schubert leaped up and replied: “These songs please me more than all the rest, and in time they will please you as well.” 

Good Night (Wilhelm Müller)
English translation with German text below :

As a stranger I arrived
As a stranger I shall leave

I remember a perfect day in May
How bright the flowers, how cool the breeze
The maiden had a friendly smile
The mother had kind words

But now the world is dreary
With a winter path before me
I can’t choose the season
To depart from this place
I won’t delay or ponder
I must begin my journey now

The bright moon lights my path
It will guide me on my road
I see the snow-covered meadow
I see where deer have trod

A voice within says — go now
Why linger and delay?
Leave the dogs to bay at the moon
Before her father’s gate

For love is a thing of changes
God has made it so
Ever-changing from old to new
God has made it so

So love delights in changes
Good night, my love, good night
Love is a thing of changes
Good night, my love, good night

I’ll not disturb your sleep
But I’ll write over your door
A simple farewell message
Good night, my love, good night

These are the last words spoken
Soon I’ll be out of sight
A simple farewell message
Goodnight, my love, good night

Gute Nacht

Fremd bin ich eingezogen, 
Fremd zieh’ ich wieder aus.  Continue reading

Today’s Birthday: JAN MASARYK (1886)


Jan Masaryk (1886)

Masaryk, a diplomat and politician in newly independent Czechoslovakia, was named ambassador to Britain in 1925. Following the German occupation of Czechoslovakia, he became foreign minister of the Czech government in exile in London. He supported cooperation with the Soviet Union and maintained his post after the Communist takeover of Czechoslovakia in 1948. Two weeks later, Masaryk was found dead outside his window in the Foreign Ministry. What are the conflicting explanations for his death? More… Discuss

 

This Day in the Yesteryear: THE GLEIWITZ INCIDENT (1939)


The Gleiwitz Incident (1939)

In 1939, Nazi forces staged an attack on a German radio station. They shot a well-known Polish sympathizer and planted his body at the scene, reporting the attack as the work of Polish saboteurs. The attack was part of a Nazi propaganda campaign called Operation Himmler, which involved a series of staged incidents intended to create the appearance of Polish aggression against Germany and provide a basis for the invasion of Poland. What did the Nazis broadcast from the radio station? More… Discuss

 

This Day in History: Germany Invades Poland (1939)


Germany Invades Poland (1939)

After staging Polish attacks on German forces to create the appearance of Polish aggression, Germany invaded Poland, beginning WWII. Britain and France declared war on Germany two days later, and all the members of the Commonwealth of Nations, with the exception of Ireland, rapidly followed suit. The German blitzkrieg crushed the Polish defenses. Within a month all of Poland was occupied by German forces as well as the forces of what state with whom Germany had just signed a non-aggression pact? More… Discuss