1. PF Insights is off to a great start! Fresh and interesting articles on all things science and math. Here: PF Insights

Date these voices!

When were the original eight lines written?

  1. before 1200

    40.0%
  2. 1200-1399

    40.0%
  3. 1400-1599

    20.0%
  4. 1600-1799

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  5. 1800-present

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. marcus

    marcus 24,377
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member
    2014 Award

    ICH STUONT MIR NEHTINT SPÂTE...

    Ich stuont mir nehtint spâte an einer zinne,
    dô hört ich einen rîter vil wol singen
    in Kürenberges wîse al ûz der menigîn.
    er muoz mir diu lant rûmen, alder ich geniete mich sîn.

    "Nu brinc mir her vil balde mîn ros, mîn îsengwant,
    wan ich muoz einer vrouwen rûmen diu lant,
    diu wil mich des betwingen, daz ich ir holt sî.
    si muoz der mîner minne iemer darbende sîn."

    ---------approx. transl.----------

    STANDING ON THE CASTLE WALL ...

    She says:
    Standing on the castle wall last night
    I heard a voice outside sing full and fine -
    a tune from Kürenberg. I say that knight
    shall either flee the country or be mine.

    He says:
    "My horse! and bring my armor's coat and pants,
    so I can clear out of this lady's lands.
    She'd have me paying court, indoors or out -
    it's her tough luck, my love she'll do without."

    ====================

    Please put your guess down in the poll before you look it up.
    A storehouse of poetry in over a dozen languages is at
    http://www.brindin.com/main.htm

    Congratulations to selfAdjoint and arildno on the other poll who both obviously know their apples when it comes to verse. Now which one was righter?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. loseyourname

    loseyourname 3,632
    Staff Emeritus
    Gold Member

    Well, the translation is different from what I would read. Some of that can probably be attributed to maintaining the structure rather than literally translating, but there are also some archaic spellings and verb conjugations that seem to be in use here, which I think places it prior to 1400.
     
  4. arildno

    arildno 12,015
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member

    Not to translate the delightful îsengwant into the colourful "iron-gown" is nothing less than a sacrilege..
    I say before 1200s on this one.
     
  5. marcus

    marcus 24,377
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member
    2014 Award

    I strongly approve of both these attitudes, arildno and loseyourname. Especially about the sacrilege (it shows that people can have strong reactions to translation they dont like)

    Everyone, especially you arildno and loseyourname, is invited to look up different translations, or to make your own more correct translation of the line, or the whole poem!

    I notice that at the BRINDIN PRESS website (from which I copied and pasted it) they often have TWO OR MORE DIFFERENT TRANSLATIONS by different people of the same poem.
    We have options, and room for differences of opinion.

    Arildno, I think in modern German the word "Gewand" means, correct me if I am wrong, "garment". I do not think it has the narrow meaning of GOWN. But there is clearly an etymological connection!
    And also a knight's CHAINMAIL was often like a gown, or like a long shirt reaching down below the knees. So IRON-GOWN would be visually evocative of a long chainmail garment. So one can argue passionately that it would be better.

    But I don't see how I can consider something different unless you show me just what you propose as a substitute.:smile:
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2005
  6. arildno

    arildno 12,015
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member

    Certainly, that is the German meaning.
    The word has passed out of modern Norwegian, and for some obscure reason, the plural form "gevanter" (used in particular to describe a woman's clothing) was more common than just "gevant" when describing some piece of garment.
     
  7. marcus

    marcus 24,377
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member
    2014 Award

    I am excited to find someone else here who feels strongly about achieving the full potential of an old voice. Let's get Evo. She can tell us what she thinks.

    Maybe it should not be "armor pants" but "iron pants"

    to ride a horse one should probably have iron pants, not a gown. and that sounds uncomfortable, which would improve the poem dont you think:smile:

    here is where I copied and pasted from
    http://www.brindin.com/pwpger.htm
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2005
  8. marcus

    marcus 24,377
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member
    2014 Award

    Arildno, and Evo, I think you will like this maybe. I got it from the same page.
    http://www.brindin.com/pwpger.htm

    JÔ STUONT ICH NEHTINT SPÂTE ...
    Der von Kürenberg

    Jô stuont ich nehtint spâte vor dînem bette,
    dô getorste ich dich, vrouwe, niwet wecken.
    "des gehazze got den dînen lîp!
    jô enwas ich niht ein eber wilde", sô sprach daz wîp.

    ALTHOUGH I STOOD LAST NIGHT ...
    trans. Raymond Oliver

    Although I stood last night at your bedside late,
    I didn't wake you, Lady; I didn't dare."
    "For that," said she, "may God forever hate
    Your carcass!" (splendid girl!) "I'm no wild bear."

    ==============================
    just as an exercise, this would be a literal (not lyric verse) translation,
    arildno please correct anything since you are closer to German

    Although stood I night late at your bed,
    dared I you, lady, not to waken.
    "May God hate your body for that!
    I wasn't afterall a wild bear," said the woman.
     
  9. Evo

    Staff: Mentor

    This made me laugh. Sounds like she was wanting to be awakened.
     
  10. marcus

    marcus 24,377
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member
    2014 Award

    yes she was quite disappointed not to have been.

    Arildno wins the point!

    Everything i've read about Der von Kürenberg says that he was a poet of the 1100s (12th c.). His exact dates are not known, but in anthologies he comes before the other medieval german (mittlehochdeutsch) poets. His style is simpler too----the others used more elaborate forms and were probably more influenced by provençal (troubadour) verse.

    So loseyourname COULD be right, since the dating isnt certain, but the weight of evidence points to pre-1200

    His name is not known----and he has always been called "The One from Kürenberg" because of this very poem, where she hears the man singing Kürenberg-fashion whatever that meant.

    POINTS SO FAR
    Code (Text):

    Andre     1
    Arildno    1
    selfAdjoint  1
     
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2005
  11. Evo

    Staff: Mentor

    Darn, I need to start guessing. :frown:
     
  12. marcus

    marcus 24,377
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member
    2014 Award

    Hi Evo, since you expressed this wish I started a couple of threads (with women poets as it happens) to give you an opportunity to guess. But I hope others will as well. My guess is that selfAdjoint is courteously holding back to make room for others and that he probably knows several of these. Please people no need to be modest. If you know the date, nail it (just don't let the rest of us know that you are sure.)
     
  13. Well, I guessed 1400-1599, based on thinking it looked as "old" to me as Shakespeare might to a German with a couple years of English. Then I read the thread and saw I had it wrong.
     
  14. marcus

    marcus 24,377
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member
    2014 Award

    thanks for taking part ZS! what you have noticed is something worth remarking----German doesnt seem to have changed as fast as english in the past 700 or 800 years. makes sense, perhaps, because no analog of 1066, which must have destabilized the language for several centuries.

    so you can go back 800 years and find a poem that seems to be written in german, or something recognizably kin to it.

    Shhhhh. Forget I said that. :smile:
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2005
  15. I have never even thought about this. I suppose I assumed all languages must be more or less equally "unstable".

    No, I don't know it.
     
  16. marcus

    marcus 24,377
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member
    2014 Award

    the shock of invasion, of having to merge with French, of having a set of rulers speaking a foreign language.

    I guess also having a large number of immigrants, even if not an invasion, could tend to reduce the syntactic complexity of a language---make it more child-like or pidginy.

    You don't know it? Hmmmm. then pretend I never said that. Shhhhh
    :smile:
     
  17. Apparently there is a known dynamic to this, something like: the first generation of foreign speakers to encounter each other develop a pidgin. Their children, however, will start to make a proper language of the pidgin, and it just keeps getting better from there.

    I read a brief description of this, interestingly, in Oliver Sacks' great book about the deaf: Seeing Voices. He was making a point about the development of the sophistication of sign language.
     
  18. arildno

    arildno 12,015
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member

    A modern Icelander has no problem reading Norse literature written 1000 years ago; the difference is about as great as that between British English and American English.
     
  19. That's incredible. I had no idea there were languages that long-lived.
     
  20. arildno

    arildno 12,015
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member

    Icelandic is admittedly, on the conservative extreme.
    I think the two major reasons for this is
    a) A history of national isolation preventing new input of words and ideas
    b) A strong oral tradition of saga-telling, so that from early years, kids were inundated in the ancient language through exciting stories, and for that reason felt little interest to make their own way of speaking deviate from the way of their forefathers.
    (I imagine young boys playing vikings and yelling out the pithy quotes and sayings they had heard countless times by the fireside).
     
  21. marcus

    marcus 24,377
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member
    2014 Award

    Arildno scored on this thread's Der von Kürenberg (12 c)
    Andre and selfAdjoint on the Cecco Angiolieri (1260-1312)
    https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=93000
    Now syzygy (history and humanities PF poster child ) has scored two points
    one on Comtessa de Dia (flourished 1160) and one on Anna Akhmatova (1889-1966)
    https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=93105
    https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=93143
    the new scoreboard:

    POINTS SO FAR
    Code (Text):

    Andre        1
    Arildno      1
    selfAdjoint  1
    syzygy       2
     
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2005
Know someone interested in this topic? Share a link to this question via email, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?