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Cantata BWV 35
Geist und Seele wird verwirret
English Translation in Interlinear Format
Cantata BWV 35 - Soul and Spirit

Event:Solo Cantata for the 12th Sunday after Trinity
Readings: Epistle: 2 Corinthians 3: 4-11; Gospel: Mark 7: 31-37
Text: Georg Christian Lehms

Biblical quotations in green font, chorales in purple

First Part

1

Sinfonia

Oboe I/II, Taille, Violino I/II, Viola, Organo obligato, Continuo

2

Aria [Alto]

Oboe I/II, Taille, Violino I/II, Viola, Organo obligato, Continuo

Geist und Seele wird verwirret,
Soul and spirit are thrown into confusion
Wenn sie dich, mein Gott, betracht.
When they consider you, my God.
Denn die Wunder, so sie kennet
for the miracles that they know
Und das Volk mit Jauchzen nennet,
add that the people talk of with shouts of joy
Hat sie taub und stumm gemacht.
Have made them deaf and dumb.

3

Recitative [Alto]

Continuo

Ich wundre mich;
I am amazed,
Denn alles, was man sieht,
for everything that we see
Muss uns Verwundrung geben.
must cause us amazement.
Betracht ich dich,
If I consider you,
Du teurer Gottessohn,
you beloved son of God
So flieht
Vernunft und auch Verstand davon.
Then reason and understanding take flight away from me.
Du machst es eben,
You bring it about
Dass sonst ein Wunderwerk vor dir was Schlechtes ist.
that what would otherwise seen a miracle is something paltry before you
Du bist
Dem Namen, Tun und Amte nach erst wunderreich,
You are in name, deeds and office preeminently wonderful,
Dir ist kein Wunderding auf dieser Erde gleich.
No wonder on this earth is like you.
Den Tauben gibst du das Gehör,
To the deaf you give hearing,
Den Stummen ihre Sprache wieder,
to the dumb you give back their speech,
Ja, was noch mehr,
indeed, what is more,
Du öffnest auf ein Wort die blinden Augenlider.
With a word you open the eyelids of the blind.
Dies, dies sind Wunderwerke,
These, these are your miracles
Und ihre Stärke
and their power
Ist auch der Engel Chor nicht mächtig auszusprechen.
even the choir of angels cannot sufficiently express.

4

Aria [Alto]

Organo obligato, Continuo

Gott hat alles wohlgemacht.
God has done all things well,
Seine Liebe, seine Treu
His love, his faithfulness
Wird uns alle Tage neu.
are new every day for us.
Wenn uns Angst und Kummer drücket,
When anxiety and care press upon us,
Hat er reichen Trost geschicket,
he has sent rich consolation
Weil er täglich für uns wacht.
For he watches over us day after day.
Gott hat alles wohlgemacht.
God has done all things well. If you.

Second Part

5

Sinfonia

Oboe I/II, Taille, Violino I/II, Viola, Organo obligato, Continuo

6

Recitative [Alto]

Continuo

Ach, starker Gott, lass mich
Ah, mighty god, let me
Doch dieses stets bedenken,
think of you continually,
So kann ich dich
then I can
Vergnügt in meine Seele senken.
in contentment have you sink down into my soul
Laß mir dein süßes Hephata
Let your sweet Ephphatha
Das ganz verstockte Herz erweichen;
soften my all too stiff heart;
Ach! lege nur den Gnadenfinger in die Ohren,
Ah! only put your finger of grace in my ear,
Sonst bin ich gleich verloren.
or else I am soon lost.
Rühr auch das Zungenband
Touch also my tongue
Mit deiner starken Hand,
with the Almighty hand
Damit ich diese Wunderzeichen
so that I may praise these signs of wonder
In heilger Andacht preise
in sacred devotion
Und mich als Erb und Kind erweise.
And show that I am your heir and child.

7

Aria [Alto]

Oboe I/II, Taille, Violino I/II, Viola, Organo obligato, Continuo

Ich wünsche nur bei Gott zu leben,
I wish to live only with God,
Ach! wäre doch die Zeit schon da,
Ah! how I wish that it were already the time
Ein fröhliches Halleluja
to raise a joyful alleluia
Mit allen Engeln anzuheben.
With all the angels.
Mein liebster Jesu, löse doch
my dearest Jesus, set me free from
Das jammerreiche Schmerzensjoch
the yoke of suffering, full of lamentation
Und lass mich bald in deinen Händen
and grant that soon in your hands
Mein martervolles Leben enden.
my life filled with torments may end.

Note on the text

BWV 35 was written for the 12th Sunday after Trinity and was first performed on 8th September 1726. The text is by Georg Christian Lehms (1684-1717), the court poet and librarian at the Darmstadt court. In 1711 he
published a book elaborately entitled:

Gottgefälliges Kir­chen-Opfer, In einem gantzen Jahr-Gange Andächtiger Betrachtungen über die gewöhnlichen Sonn- und Festtags-Texte, Gott zu Ehren und der Darmstättischen Schloß-Capelle zu seiner Früh- und Mittags-Erbauung angezündet von Georg Christian Lehms, Hochfürstlich Hessen-Darm­stättischen Bibliothecario.

Bach must have acquired this book soon after publication since he used it for some cantatas written during his Weimar period (Mein Herze schwimmt im Blut, Widerstehe doch der Sünde). He made extensive use of Lehms' texts again in Christmas 1725/January 1726 (BWV 110, BWV 57, BWV 151, BWV 16, BWV 32 and BWV 13) and in the following summer wrote two cantatas for solo alto: BWV 170 and the present text. As his title indicates Lehms wrote texts for both morning and afternoon services : the morning texts were longer and BWV 110 is the only one used by Bach. All the others were taken from the more intimate texts written for the afternoon and appropriately therefore some of Bach's cantatas to Lehms' texts are solo or dialogue works .

In BWV 35 Lehms uses madrigalian verse throughout , with no biblical words or chorale and as was customary for him the text makes close reference to the gospel of the day - Mark's account of Jesus' healing of a deaf and dumb man (Mark 7: 31-37). The intimate nature of Lehms' afternoon texts is shown at once in the opening aria by the reinterpretation of Jesus' physical healing of a deaf mute in terms of the amazement the 'Volk' feel before God which makes them in turn deaf and dumb. In the following recitative the soloist using the pronoun I and so speaking for the people articulates their reaction to God's wonder, mentioning the healing of the deaf and dumb more directly. The second aria uses the phrase that concludes the gospel narrative- 'God has done all things well' - adding to it a reference to Lamentations 3:23 : His love, his faithfulness are renewd for us every day. The second recitative was probably performed after the sermon, and so acts as the applicatio, the drawing of conclusions for everyday life. God is asked to apply the miracle to the ganz verstockte Herz of each of us, opening ears and loosening tongues, so that we ma y becomes his heirs. The idea of our heavenly inheritance leads to the concluding aria which expresses the desire to be free from the suffering of this world and to praise God in heaven.

--

This Translation in Parallel Format

English Translation by Francis Browne (July 2008, recised & notes December 2011)
Contributed by Francis Browne (July 2008, December 2011)

Cantata BWV 35: Details & Complete Recordings | Recordings of Individual Movements | Discussions: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3
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Last update: ęDecember 26, 2011 ę23:58:58