Des Knaben Wunderhorn (The Youth's Miraculous Horn) was an assemblage of folksongs and folksong-style poems collected and adapted in 1805 and 1808 by poets Achim von Arnim and Clemens Brentano to reflect their concept of German folk poetry. In 1887, Gustav Mahler discovered the musical potential of this collection; and over the next 14 years, it provided him with most of his song texts.
By applying his personal experiences to reinterpret literary thought — something he was to do all his life in almost every composition he penned — he was able to create musical settings that elevated poetry beyond the realm of fairy tales and neo-medievalism. Included among these celebrated lieder are: Zu Strassburg auf der Schanz; Abl sung im Sommer; Nicht Wiedershene!; Wo die sch nen Trompeten blasen; Trist im Ungl ck; and Rheinlegendschen.
In addition to Mahler's 23 songs on Wunderhorn texts — and the full text of the 24th song, Das himmlische Leben — this important new compilation contains his settings of five poems by Friedrich R ckert — a marvelous representation of the composer's most intimate and significant work. Both sets of songs have been reprinted from authoritative sources for this handsome, inexpensive edition.