For your information, concerning this page:
Contrary to what is said, the French anthem does not say "fertilize our farmland with their enemies' filthy blood". Filthy blood refers to the combatants for freedom. It means : this is not a problem if WE, impure (and not filthy) blood die, because our blood will fertilize the fields (of freedom). The word impure refers to the opposition between the nobility, whose blood was consiedered as "pure" or "blue", and the People, whose blood was considered as "impure". So they speak about themselves, and not about the ennemies. This is a "civil war" song, so the French national anthem does not refer to any expansionism or foreign coutries, but only to the opposition between the nobility and de king on the one hand, and the people on the other hand.
Thank you, Julien
Thank you for this brilliant website!!!
I've used it several times to search for some old german songs, which have a very bad publicity no, although they're not related to any nazi things.
Germany is a strange country today....
If you hear songs from 1914-1918 or 1933-1945, you are called "nazi", "facist", "extreme right" and people look at you like you're a mutant.
If you sing the national anthem with pride, the same happens.
I'm no nazi, but I can't understand why our laws forbid us to hear those songs. They say we "would be affected by those songs and propaganda"....
I think, if german teachers would listen to the "hard" songs with us in school and talk about them and how they were used as propaganda less german kids would go to NPD or other neonazi parties.
All things happened, created, done and people lived during the first half of the 20th century are BAD from the view of most germans.
They were told this way over 40 years by our politicians. Germany lacks a real patriotic and democratic party since we're living in this democracy.
Let's hope the future will bring us a better way to digest our past.
I just came of age here in Germany and I read this letter from the Bundesprüfstelle . . . whatever. Something jumps to mind. They talk about free development, how does that coincide with them banning everything that even smells slightly of the Nazis?
Some of my friends and me like to poke fun at the whole thing, Nazis, WWII, current legal conditions etc. by pretending to be little Neonazi freaks, only sometimes of course. In conversation we might utter some old slogans or other things . . . it's funny for us, especially with the reactions we get. Strangely this does not disturb me as I spent 8 years of my life in Indonesia, Only one of my friends might be a Nazi, though he has a jewish name. I don't know why, but for us this is funny.
About your site, it's a great site. My compliments for the very very large collection. I personally enjoy the irish songs very much because I just love irish folksongs (modern songs too, but mainly folk music)
But hey, you haven't censored the songs they want censored. Good on you. To me, German law is a joke. I just find it to be ridiculous. The things they want are simply ridiculus. The letter you posted on your site is a great example of this.
And what do honor and glory have to do with the Nazis; it's the same with the swastika. I knew many people in Indonesia who had it, in their car or at home, usually hanging beneath a buddha figure and sometimes on the reverse side of a yin and yang symbol. It's an old buddhist symbol as well as an old germanic rune and . . . Hitler didn't make it up so why should we all be afraid of it? This is all a big joke.
And honor and glory, to come back to the original point, what's so bad about it? Honor and glory are 2 very important aspects to being a soldier. To take their honor and glory is to spit and urinate and dump a load on their graves and names.
I seem to have lost control over my writing self again, I shall stop now. . . . someday I MUST learn to write systematically.
Regards, and keep up the good work, we all depend on you for our musical fulfilment
V. B. D.
I came by your site quite by accident. Interestingly (and inconsequentially perhaps), the reason I write to you is that I have used German national anthem (Berlin Symphonic Orchestra version, attached) as a ringtone on my mobile phone to wake me up every morning for last six months. A lowly task, you might say, for a national anthem, but think about it: if you don't come to hate a song that interrupts your sleep regularly EVERY DAY for 180 days, it must be a really special song!
I am not German by any stretch of the word (I live in Montenegro, Yugoslavia, but I am Croat by nationality - ie Slavic), but I have deep respect for German people. Any nation able to rise from the ashes (literally) of the WWII to become third largest economic power in the world just a couple decades later HAS to be respected. The same goes, of course, for Japan and Italy, but their anthems are not as beautiful ;-)
In short, I would shoot on the spot anyone trying to ban this song as a national anthem of Germany (political correctness be damned).
Greetings from Montenegro
I just want tocongratulate you for your kind words about the German national Anthem. I'm Chilean with a strong German background and I'm proud of it. I must agree with our Turkish friend, the history is written by the winners, and personally, I believe that the German people must be proud to survive and rebuild their country after the world wars and become a strong and powerful country after that.
I really think that nazi or marxism or any totalitarian ideology is bad, but it is not fair to blame the soldiers if their politicians are nuts. For every soldier, specially from a country that held the Soviet juggernaut for over forty years, the words honor, hero, country, nation, flag etc, are the most important thing that the government of the time returned for their sacrifice.
Congratulations for your excellent web site. I wish you lots of years of success.
Klaus E. Chile
i like to read about the ww2 and try to get music as well.your site is the best for music.thank you.
i saw the comments about deutschland über alles, and to be honest, i couldn't give a meaning. the americans bomb civilians, it's called action against terorist.they are the ONLY user of the atom bomb too. but it won't make sense for them cuz the japanese people are only "monkeys" for them as they say in every film.
i am turkish and we were able to save our land right after we lost ww1, thank god Ataturk was here! but germany had to wait to correct the versailles! nazis or not, any party would try i'm sure. i'm trying to say, the national anthem is germany's, not nsdap's..so, keep it..and all the germans should give up feeling shy and embarassed about the ww2, cuz we all know that THE WINNERS WRITE THE HISTORY BOOKS.
today i watched born on the fourth of july again. i hope mr bush watches it too and get out of iraq. no more wars. no more dead..
may the good spirits be with you all, and peace on earth..
I love your site. As for the Deutschland Ueber Alles, as you said, it is ridiculous to ban it.
The French anthem, which I find to be a very powerful patriotic song, is bloody beyond belief.
"Sacred love of the fatherland, cherished liberty, strenghten our arm of vengence.... victory come to your male calls, let your dying ennemies, see your triumph and your glory...." And it goes on....
And finally, are you old enough to remember the pathetic debate circa 1980 about the O Canada? As a Quebecker, I could not help but laugh with contempt as our parliament debated every word of the English version: "Son of the True North" what about daughters? "Our home and native land " What about Canadians not born in Canada? and on and on..... while this debate went on between English speaking members of parliament, no one dared to touch O Canada in French: O Canada Land of our forefathers (native is bad???), you know how to bear the cross (Hum...screw the Jews I guess).
So, the poor Germans were just the first one to be submitted to the facism of political correctness. Now they are not alone.
Thank God I live in Japan,
Hello, I am 16 years old, and currently reside in the United States. I first found your site when I was trying to find old German music and lyrics, such as Lili Marlene for my grandmother.
She was born in Germany, experienced World War II and is a firm opponent of Fascism, but still listens to the German WWII and other era folksongs I download for her.
I, as a student of German, and someone having a love of his land of origin, have also grown attached to the material on your site. I hope your site lasts a long time.
Also, your comments on Deutschland über Alles I find to be the truth. Why must the German armed forces stray from traditional songs and hymns? It's a punishment, just like the Treaty of Versailes was! It all gives me mixed emotions. Perhaps it is too late, or you just proved a point too well.
Your site is wonderful, and I derive much pleasure from it. It is truly one of the best on the internet on any subject. But be fair in your comments about the American anthem, made on the page which gives "Deutschland Uber Alles," - it does not mention the Halls of Montezuma or the shores of Tripoli, (that's the Marine Hymn, as you know) but, rather, asks, after a night of bombardment of Fort McHenry, "Oh, say does that Star-Spangled Banner yet wave?" In my judgement we adopted this unsingable national anthem because of its referrence to the Star-Spangled Banner, a particularly evocative description of our national symbol. "America the Beautiful," is my favorite; better melody, better sentiments. But nothing can touch Haydn's melody. If we'd wanted to be bellicose, we would have adopted, "Columbia the Gem of the Ocean."
I was born in England and now live in South Africa, and I have to agree with your comments on the German national anthem, however, "Rule Britannia" is not the British national anthem; "God Save the Queen" is, and the American Mexico to Tripolis reference is not in their anthem either.
Likewise, in a similar situation, the old South African Anthem, much described as an integral part of Apartheid and oppresses blacks. This is total nonsense, as the only mention of people at all, except one of an ox-wagon; the rest all describes our abundant natural beauty. The Xhosa and Sotho verses of our anthem (there are four - for four of our eleven official languages (!), strangely enough the main four that vote ANC - the non-ANC Zulu language, our biggest, is somehow left out) talk ask God to bless Africa - and the final English language verse is about unity.
Such Bigotry as shown to the German Anthem is a throw back to the dark ages. If it were applied universally I should expect most anthems to suffer. What about the British Elgar -Pomp and circumstance song - Land of Hope and Glory - "How can we exalt thee who are born of thee, WIDER STILL AND WIDER SHALT THY BOUNDS BE SET!!" The only thing that has been set in the last 60 years has been the sun on this British notion - not that they have stopped singing this song to end public concerts etc. So why ban yours?? Not to mention the use of the Orange lodge tune "Protesant Boys" on the BBC World Service. Doubt if it wins the hearts and minds of many IRA supporters.
Keep up the Good Work
Brit born - Canadian Raised
I thought I should comment on this song, since I'm one of the 120 people who visit the page every day :) I'm an 18 year old swedish guy with (sort of) far left-wing political views. Despite this, I really enjoy patriotic songs of all kinds since they are a great contribution to the culture of all countries world wide.
I see nothing wrong with "legalizing" the German national anthem again, since it's not one bit offensive to anyone. There is NOTHING wrong with being proud of your country, and there is nothing wrong with critizising your government if you think it's not running the country the way it should. Patriotism is great, as long as you don't misinterpret it or use it as a way of blindfolding people.
Deutschland über Alles is a beautiful song, and everyone should be allowed to listen to it, play it or put up a link to it on their homepage without being forced to pay money or spending a month in jail. If people want to ban the German national anthem, they should be banning their own anthems as well. There is, after all, a difference between "Horst Wessel Lied"(according to which the swastika is gazed upon by millions) and the national anthem.
Since basically any other country in the world is already allowed to play their national anthem freely, let Germany do the same thing! There is no reason to punish today's culture because of something a bunch of crazy people did more than 60 years ago. Patritoism DOES NOT necessarily mean war.
I have enjoyed this site for several years now. Read your comments on the Deutschlandlied. Interesting that you no longer (as I believe you did in times past) have it connected to the original words for the Hapsburg anthem, which is what Haydn wrote this melody for - exactly because the Austrians felt it necessary to have a response to the Marseillaise, of which the text, not the music, was written in Strassburg!
As for fertilizing the fields with the blood of their enemies, it would be more accurate to describe exactly who they were: "cette horde d'esclaves, de traitres, de rois conjures" : This hord of slaves, traitors, and plotter-kings! The aristos, which Germany and Austria-Hungary didn't manage to get rid of until after WWI...and in such a way as to pave the way for WWII.
Also, of course, there is something a bit overreaching about: Von dem Maas bis an die Memel; von der Etsch bis an den Belt. The Meuse, as we know, was never entirely, or even mostly, in German Territory, and I'm sure you know where the Etsch = Adige is located...it's still in Italy. Thus, we are talking here about an expansionist song...mehr Lebensraum fuer das deutsche Volk als das was es schon hatte - oder sollen wir denken, die Hollaender wollten im 19. Jahrhundert DEUTSCH werden. Ich glaub' es nicht! Deswegen singt man den ersten Vers nicht mehr.
Das Grossdeutschland von dem es spricht war ein Traum, der zum Alptraum geworden ist. Das man noch, "Einigkeit und Recht u. Freiheit" singt, kommt mir als durchaus passend vor. Und Sie haben natuerlich recht, die anderen Nationalgesaenge (wohl nicht alle Hymne - Britische ist, natuerlich: God save our gracious Queen, wo nur "Send her victorious, happy and glorious": wo das "siegreich" auf Wehr andeuten koennte (obgleich...) - sind wenigstens so blutdurstig als das Deutschlandlied und, noch dazu, wollen (ausser der Marseillaise), dass Gott auch auf der Seite der Nation kaempft!
So, als Amerikaner (geboren), habe ich jetzt die Wahl zwischen das alte Fahnenlied (Star-Spangled Banner) oder "America the Beautiful" - wo Gott fast ueberall auftritt! Und, natuerlich, informell ist "God Bless America" zum Nationalhymne geworden, weil man es wenigstens singen kann!
Thus, I would suggest to you that you link the Deutschlandlied to the original Austrian text; to the American hymn "Glorious Things of Thee Are Spoken"; and to the versions of the prior German national anthemn: "Heil dir im Siegerkranz", which is, of course, the same to as "God Save the Queen" and the former (until 1934) American national anthemn: "My Country 'Tis of Thee" - which, of course, drags God into the last verse: "Our Fathers' God, to Thee, Author of Liberty, To Thee we sing. Long may our Land be bright/With Freedom's holy light./Protect us by Thy might, Great God our King." !!??!!
All that can be said of all of these patriotic songs is that they are all subject to infinite abuse and are, and have been, frequently abused. Frankly, I think a few changes in the third verse of the Deutschlandlied could make it into a world-wide, generally acceptable song...but of course, you would have to substitute: fuer die ganze weite Welt for: fuer das deutsche Vaterland....
Then, at least, we could all argue about the true meaning of Recht und Freiheit. That's what it is all about. There are some very good ideas in the writings of another German: Immanuel Kant. "So act, that your every action could become a general law for all humanity."
Anyway, you have created a wonderful site which has given me much enjoyment! And I know your heart is in the right place from the two versions of the Horst Wessel Gedankmarsch!
All the best.
Michael Chicago, IL
thank you for your beautiful site. I just wanted to react to the message posted by Michael from Chicago (Illinois) on the state borders as referred to the 1st strophe of the Deutschlandlied.
As the song was written by August Freiherr Hoffmann von Fallerleben somewhere in 1840 on the island of Helgoland, Germany consisted out of 37-odd states united in the German Union (a kind of European Union avant-la-lettre). Fallersleben wrote his song in reaction to the threat of a French invasion in the so called Rhine Crisis of 1840 which had followed on the Algiers Crisis of that same year. What happened was that after the French had made further expansionist moves in present-day Algeria, the old Coalition against Napoleon (the British, Austrians, Prussians and Russia) got frightened again of French imperialistic aggression. Therefore they made the French back off for a while from expanding further into Algeria, under the threat of a new Coalition War against France. Prominent French nationalistic politicians like Guizot and Thiers thereupon sought for a kind of revenge and so they started to pick on the smallest and therefore presumed weakest of the Coalition members, the Prussians.
Since 1815 the Kingdom of Prussia included also the provinces of the Rhine and Westphalia, and now Thiers and Guizot and their likes threatened again to let France make another move torward making the Rhine the French state border 'again', an old dream which the French had pursued since the days of Le roi du solei down to Le tigre. Of course this threat led to a great stir not only in Prussia, but all of the German lands. Since Germany wasn't politically united and as such didn't have a united government or army, the weakness felt led to a great deal of frustration amongst liberal and national minded spirits, which at the time being, mostly led to written protest in the form of pamphlets, poems and of course songs. Not only was Das Deutschlandlied written in the course of the events of 1840, but also Die Wacht am Rhein; which was one of the most direct answers against the threat of a French invasion.... Lieb Vaterland magst ruhig sein, fest steht und treu die Wacht, die Wacht am Rhein.
The natural borders of Germany as described in Das Deutschlandlied were neither unreal nor expansionist. On the contrary, these borders coincide rather perfectly with the landmass which at the time was not only part of the German Union but also occupied by people which one could easily mark as being German since they spoke German.
Let us start with the Meuse. The middle-stream of the Maas brings the river through the city of Maastricht in the province of Limburg which nowadays belongs solely to the Kingdom of the Netherlands. Until 1866 it also formed a part of the German Union as the Duchy of Limburg and as such this duchy had belonged to the Sacrum Imperium Romanum Nationis Germanicae since the beginning, and was only after the Napoleonic Wars turned over to the Netherlands. Even today the native population of South-Limburg, the actual Limburg since the northern part of the present-day province used to be the entirely different of Duchy Upper Guelders, speak a dialect which is by far more German than Dutch . . . and even the D(e)ut(s)ch language itself isn't more then a variation of German if one is perfectly honest.
So not only did the Meuse flow though Germany at the time Deutschlandlied was written in a juridical sense, but also in the more practical sence that there were Germans living at the banks of this river.
The Etsch River, which ‘Mister Chicago Michael’ also seems to think wasn't flowing though Germany at the time it was written, belonged to the Gefuerstete Grafschaft Tirol and by that also to the German Union. Even more so, the people themselves were Germans and not Italians. It was only after the treacherous Italians got their Brennerpass-border after WWI that the southern part of Tyrol fell into Italian hands.
The Memel River and the Ferhmarn Belt formed the borders respectively between Eastern Prussia and then Russian held Lithuania and between Holstein and Denmark and both these river casu quo straights borders were clearly German held by law and by fact... that is they belonged to a German state that belonged to the German Union and those border-regions were populated by native Germans.
On behalf of the territorial aspects of the first strophe of the Deutschlandlied there was nothing and I repeat nothing 'expansionist' at all. It would be nothing short of a anachronistic approach or to put it more plainly, a lie, to pretend the reverse. And I'm sick and tired of people stuffed with political correctness combined with an utter, utter, utter lack of accurate historical knowledge going on talking about things, like for this instance the origins and original meaning of the German National Anthem, of which they in the end haven’t, even the faintest clue... The only thing the first strophe of the hymn is trying to say, is between what borders the then German Union was located and that its people should stand up and unite in times of danger, as at that moment, and face the threat united.
That is also the meaning of the Deutschland, Deutschland über Alles phrase, not that Germany would be any better than any other nation in the world, but that the inhabitants of the various German states, and especially their politicians, should forget about their internal differences in times of need and danger, and stick together in honour and defence of the 'Holy Fatherland'; to put it somewhat pathetically of course.
Well, with kind regards and ‘thank you for the music’,
Chris S (Netherlands)
Thanks for the effort to put together such a splendid site. For the sake of one lunatic, Germany still is fed humble pie, while the U.S. has a plethora of lunatics from whom to chose, not to mention the one in the White House. I mean, it's way beyond a mere double standard.
I even know Jews who are fed up with the smearing of everything German; they hate Israel and the holocaust industry that feeds the Zionist propaganda machine. It's enough to make Goebels turn with envy in his nasty grave.
Germany is a great country-- always has been, always will be-- and I can't wait to get back there.
my name is Jairo and I am a 19 year old man from Costa Rica; currently living in Toronto.
I just wanted to express my solidarization with you and your cause to protect the legacy of a great nation, people and culture such as the German, from those who want to see it vanish from the face of the earth.
You have my true and entire support
Frank, from one Patriot to another.
Your sentiment on your anthem is interesting, I think, in my opinion, that there is nothing, at all wrong in the original text. And to be honest, the war of 90 and 60 years ago has taught us nothing really, so why punish people in the country that did not win.
Some people tell me, here in Britain, my patriotism is wrong. I tell them - - - so it is fair you should have the same power.
Look at the Japanese, they used us as bloody pin cusions, and have had no inpingement on their way of life.
Bloody good site, Bloody good show.
BE proud to be German, It's who you are, no one should berate you for that, thats what starts Wars, not prevents them.
Simon - UK
I really like the song "Deutschland über alles" and it's clear that when it was written it had the meaning you explained. But that song was also used by Nazism in a totally different meaning, world domination; and since German armies were the major responsible of the devastations of WW2, it's also comprehensible why that song could sound injuring to some people (think of Poland). Consider also the hymn of the Fascist Party "Giovinezza"
Giovinezza, giovinezza, primavera di bellezza,
nella vita, nell'asprezza, il tuo canto squilla e va.
It means:Youth, youth, spring of beauty, in the life and in adversity your song blares and goes.
No hatred meaning, but history marked forever the song.
Again congratulations for the great site.
Vittorio - Italy
I'm a [ - - ] a loyal monarchist.
I totally agree with your statements about Deutschland über alles. My grandmother's grandparents were Jewish, but died before the war, yet she was, and still is patriotic towards Germany. It's something which our younger generations are going to loose if we don't act to stop this rubbish about anthems being "offensive".
As I see it, the stupidity of the laws against Germans being able to express pride, honour etc, seems as outrageous as some of the terms in thetreaty of Versailles!
Next they'll be telling the war veterans they aren't allowed to wear their medals!
My compliments on the site, I spend hours listening.
Great site... but just one correction... LOL.. the US national anthem is not about "...the shores of tripoli.." et al.. THAT---is the US Marine Anthem, and that was taken from a remark of admiration from one who was fighting in ww1 with the marines. But---I DO really like your site. :D
By the way...the French do want to fertilize their fields with their enemies. They just want someone else to do if for them.
I just wanted to say, great website, one of the few places I can find my kind of music these days, and the only one where it's not classified as "propaganda" along with some hateful comments against Germany/Hitler/etc,
On the site it said the words Honor, Hero, and Fame are banned!?!? If true, that is truly, and honestly disgraceful, but it wouldn't suprise, one of the many mind boggling acts of the Bundes Republik, I'd nearly say that to have those words in particular, BANNED, and in Germany?!? Where they have the most meaning, I dare to say that borders on the edge of treason against the German people to say the least...
Anyway, thanks for your efforts with the website, and for not buying into that stupidity.
Ive just never bought into the theory "Hitler was patriotic, Hitler killed Jews, we must make Patriotism illegal, or we're evil"
Not only do the French want to fertilize their farmland with their enemies' filthy blood, but also our fine old American state of Maryland wants to "avenge the patriotic gore that flecked the streets of Baltimore", and even "spurns the Northern scum" [from our War of 1861].
By the way, our Marines want to fight From the Halls of Montezuma to the shores of Tripoli in the United States Marine Corps Hymn, but that is not part of the USA's national anthem "The Star-Spangled Banner". But our national anthem, sung to the same tune as the old English drinking song "To Anacreon in Heaven", does get around to some good old blood and gore in its third verse, which says the blood of the evil invading British soldiers has "wash'd out their foul footsteps' pollution."
I especially like the Soviet Hymn, which was the national anthem of the USSR. It is very stirring, and sings of an unbreakable union (well, it looked unbreakable when written in 1944) of freeborn republics that goes on to great victory. No blood and gore, just forward into utopia with strong, bronzed laborers clapping each other on the back, walking arm in arm up the people's way into the sun. And the music is truly stirring.
Ich kann nur kleine Deutsch sprechen, so werde ich Englisch sprechen. Hoffentlich koenst du das verstehen.
When you refer to the US wanting to march from Mexico to Libya, you are thinking of the Marines' fighting song.
Our national anthem in fact, refers to defending Baltimore against the British in the War of 1812.
I hope this might clear up any confusion, and clear the name of the US being an aggresive nation (at least in our national anthem... I make no such claims about President Bush)
I'm Brazilian with German background, like more than 5 million Brazilians.
Your site is great, and I usually visit it to find the lyrics of German songs.
This email is to thank you, and to tell you that what you wrote about the German National Anthem is perfect.
Germany should not be ashamed of its past and must have pride of it!