Ich liebe dich - (2008)    

Karl Friedrich Wilhelm Herrosee

for medium voice and piano

Günther und Dora Roth gewidmet


Ich liebe dich, so wie du mich,
Am Abend und am Morgen,
Noch war kein Tag, wo du und ich
Nicht teilten unsre Sorgen.

Auch waren sie für dich und mich
Geteilt leicht zu ertragen;
Du tröstetest im Kummer mich,
Ich weint in deine Klagen.

Drum Gottes Segen über dir,
Du, meines Lebens Freude.
Gott schütze dich, erhalt dich mir,
Schütz und erhalt uns beide.

[ 2 pages, circa 2' 15" ]


Karl Friedrich Wilhelm Herrosee was born in 1764 in Berlin.  From a Huguenot family, Herrosee studied from 1775-77 in Frankfurt an der Oder. For a short time he was vicar to a congregation in Dresden, and then returned to Berlin as associate pastor at the Trinity Church and Berlin Dom. In 1788 in Züllichau an der Oder he was pastor to the local court, later Superintendent. He taught religion, Pedagogy  and education seminars in a school founded by him -- the Töchterschule in Züllichau. Herrosee is well known for his hymns, among them "Danket dem Herrn! Wir danken dem Herrn." Among his other poems, Beethoven chose this text above for a classic art song. Herrosee died in in 1821 in Züllichau (Neumark).


 I love you as you love me,
in the evening and the morning,
nor was there a day when you and I
did not share our troubles.

And when we shared them
they became easier to bear;
you comforted me in my distress,
and I wept in your laments.

Therefore, may God's blessing be upon you,
You, my life's joy.
God protect you, keep you for me,
and protect and keep us both.


Translation from German to English copyright © by Emily Ezust (www.recmusic.org/lieder/)


in the lower key


I have known this text since my youth, in its setting by Beethoven whose many art songs I have sung for decades. In thinking of re-setting these words, known also as "Zärtliche Liebe," the same gestural patterns become moved into a less static setting than its predecessor for the counterpoint to the vocal line in the top voice of the accompaniment. The leaning lower neighbor rising the half step as in measures six and seven add a poignancy to the larger intervals and provide contrast to the vocal line.



The first of two of three strophes repeated, the third breaks from the form and leaves the opening gesture for the first verse to the last two lines as a look back, without being a complete quote.


Günther and Dora Roth


The score for Ich liebe dich is available as a free PDF download, though any major commercial performance or recording of the work is prohibited without prior arrangement with the composer. Click on the graphic below for this piano-vocal score.


Ich liebe dich

in F


Ich liebe dich

in G