Lübeck: The hermit

The hermit
The hermit

The hermit

To sterven dat is mi nicht leit,
Were ik van binnen bereit,
Were mine Conciencien wol purgert,
De Viant heft mi tentert
Mit menniger Temptacie swar.
Vorbarme di Her openbar,
Ik di bekenne mine Sund,
Wes mi gnedich tor lesten Stund.

To die, that is not difficult for me,
if I were prepared inwardly,
[and] were my conscience well cleansed.
The Devil has tempted me
with many great temptations.
Show mercy, Lord, openly
I confess to you my sins.
Be gracious to me in the last moment.

Death answers the hermit

Du machst wol danssen blidelik,
Di hort dat hemmelske Rik.
Dat Arbeit, dat du hefst ghedan,
Sal diner Selen lustende stan.
Deden se alle so, it scholde en vromen,
Er scholde nicht vele ovel komen,
Men it wirde mengen sur,
Kum to min Reigen, Veltgebur.

You may very well dance gladly,
To you belongs the heavenly kingdom.
The work that you have done
shall gladden your soul.
If everybody did so, it would be to much benefit;
there wouldn't be much evil.
But it has become difficult for many [people].
Come into my rank, peasant.

The red area shows the location in the chapel in Lübeck
The dance of death and the Oldesloe chapel
ca. 1940.
The chapel

The dance of death picks up again after having been interrupted by the little private Oldesloe chapel. This chapel was quite small and located between the nave and the dance of death chapel, but does not exist today.

See this page for more about the dance of death chapel.