II (BWV Anh. 11) Es lebe der König, der Vater im Lande

Nameday of Augustus II (3 August).

Christian Friedrich Henrici (Picander), Ernst-Schertzhaffte und Satyrische Gedichte, Teil IV (Leipzig, 1737); Facs: Neumann T, p. 350.

3 August 1732, Leipzig; Parody: 1 ---> BWV 215/1 and 232/IV (Osanna); 7 ---> BWV 213/5 and 248IV/4(39); 9 ---> BWV 212/14.

NBA I/36, Krit. Bericht.


A Drama in Music

For the High Nameday-Feast of His Royal Majesty in Poland and Illustrious Prince Elector of Saxony etc. etc., 3 August 1732.

Love of Country, Good Fortune of Country, Providence of Country

1. Chorus

Long life to the King now, the nation's true father,
The prudent, the gentle, the valiant August!
He is our true grace and fame,
He is also all we own,
He is heaven's very joy,
The prudent, the gentle, the valiant August!

Da Capo.

2. Recit.

August, immortal one, August,
Where is a land
For peace and blessing, health and joy
As Sax'ny so well-known?
Who is like thee? Who is thy match?
Through thee alone
The land and realm
Must in the hold of prosp'rous years abide.
Who sees in any subject here
Distress or trouble's face?
We are kept safe, we are well fed,
And glory in the joy of favors
Which thy paternal grace provides:
Here dwelleth full satiety;
Each person hath enough,
For we in thee have ev'ry treasure!

3. Aria

Praise, ye nations, this our pleasure,
Find your joy in this our joy!
Say, "How blessed are the Saxons,"
But say also, "This good fortune
Gives to us our Lord August."

Da Capo.

4. Recit. (Love of Country)

And therefore, Sire, be well assured,
As many be thy subject souls,
So many hearts thou shalt here find
Who thee so greatly love
That they their years would shorten gladly
To make thine own years on and on
Endure and never reach their limit.
We always fully look to thee,
E'en though thou may'st for an extended time
From our embrace have been denied;
For we have even still thy course
With prayerful expectation
Sincere in spirit followed with thee;
Thy heart perceiveth this,
Thy father's-heart thou needst but ask!

5. Aria (Love of Country)

Remove thou may'st thy gracious glances,
And hide as well thy countenance,
Our love will stand and will not yield.
It follows thee, it holds thee close.
And since it must thine escort be,
It will to us once more return thee.

Da Capo.

6. Arioso à 2 (Good Fortune of Country, Love of Country)

O kindly heaven, thou who know'st
How much this loyal Saxon land
Its monarch, its Augustus, treasures,
Now hearken to the prayer
Which morn and night
Next to thy throne with fervor waiteth:
Lengthen, spare them,
His years' number,
That his life and his endeavors
Past all mortal ken might prosper.

7. Aria (Love of Country)

Godly fortune, when I ask thee
If these happy days' glad increase
For my king will yet expand?
Ah, then say thou, say thou "Yes!" (Echo) "Yes!"
And from this man's fall and ruin
Keep us safely, keep us ever! (Echo) "Ever!"(1)

8. Recit. (Providence of Country)

Take hope, ye true and loyal subjects,
'Tis God Almighty's will:
As August more than all the excellence
Of his ancestral heroes
Within his soul doth hold,
Shall heaven therefore to his age,
Which it e'en now as godlike lauds,
The toll of these same years
Together now surrender;
Take hope! He'll live yet long,
He'll live to bring this age great wonder.

9. Aria (Providence of Country)

I will extol him,
I will attend him
And for his spirit kindly care.
Mine eye shall ever lead him,
Mine arm shall for him battle,
Within my hand he shall find rest.

Da Capo.

10. Recit. (Good Fortune of Country, Love of Country)

(Good Fortune of Country)
Bless me! My prosp'rous state
Will like a rock so undisturbed,
So firm and lasting stand,
And if it's possible, be even more enhanced.

(Love of Country)
Now shall I be insatiable
This gentle August to clasp to me

(Both)
And ne'er a day allow escape us
When our lips and hearts have not pledged him our hopes.

11. Aria

Long life to the King now, the nation's true father,
To comfort, to gladden, to brighten the world;
And its Prince, its Solomon
Fare and flourish even as
It his pleasure shall fulfill.
Then shall all abide yet in blessed assurance.
Long life to the King now, the nation's true father,
To comfort, to gladden, to brighten the world.


1. A parody of this aria (BWV 213/5) will honor the birthday of the eleven year-old Crown Prince Friedrich Christian, the son of Augustus III, in the following year, 5 September 1733; a second parody (BWV 248IV/4) will honor the Nameday of Jesus on 1 January 1734.


© Copyright  Z. Philip Ambrose


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