peter krey's web site

scholarship, sermons, songs, poems, weblog writing on Wordpress.com

“G’Mornin, Sir Advocate” by Fritz Reuter (1810-1874)Translated from the Low German of Mecklenburg

with 2 comments

The Worthless Account

By Fritz Reuter

(1810-1874)

Translated from the Low German dialect

“G’mornin, sir Advocate, your honor,

Something just happened to me –

out in the street; this mangy critter,

this shameless dog, came over

and bit me in the leg,

and ripped my pants to a shred.

Now this is a brand new pair

And I would like to ask you there,

Could I lodge a complaint

Against the guy, because people cain’t

allow dogs that bite

to run around wherever they might.”

“Most certainly, I say, my dear friend, you may.

The owner of that canine

That perpetrated such a crime

To have ripped your trousers into shreds

can be required to replace your threads.”

“Would I be allowed to charge three dollars?”

“Certainly, you could. That price

should just suffice. Three dollars

is not too much for trousers

That are so nice.”

“Well, sir advocate, your honor,” said Moeller Thiel

“Then fork over three dollars, my dear sir.

It was your mangy dog, your mangy cur!”

“My dog, little Pollo bit you in the calf?

Very well, I’ll take responsibility on his behalf.

Here are your three dollars

to buy yourself some new trousers.

What’s right is right so right increases

Or else this world will go to pieces.”

Moeller laughed a derisive little laugh,

Pleased with himself for his skillful gaff.

Pocketed the money and no longer peeved,

was just about to take his leave….

“Stop, dear friend,” said the advocate.

“Duty bound am I to inform you

That for my expertise and advice, too

Three dollars and sixteen cents are due.

So out with your three dollars

And add sixteen cents thereto

And now this case is rightly through.

What’s right is right, my friend, so right increases

Or else this world will go to pieces.”

De Rechnung ahn Wirt

Von Fritz Reuter

„Gu’n Morgen, Herr Avkat, mi is do wat passiert.

Mi het dor up de Strat so’n unverschämtes Dirt

Von Köter in de Beinen beten

Und mi en Stück ut mine Büxen reten.

5 Dat is ’ne ganze nige Hos,’

Und ick wull Sei dat bloss mal fragen,

Ob ick den Kirl nich künn verklagen,

der so’n bettchen Hund lett los’

Hier ob de Straten rümmen gahn?”

10„Gewiss, mein lieber Freund, das können Sie!

Der Eigentümer von dem Vieh,

Dass Ihnen solches angetan

Und Ihre Hose riss in Fetzen,

Muss Ihnen selbige ersetzen.

15„Süll’t woll drei Daler föddern können?”

„Gewiss, dass können Sie! Für diese schönen

Und neuen Hosen ist das nicht zu viel.”

„Na, Herr Avkat,” sagt Möller Thiel,

„Denn geben S’man drei Taler her.

20Wil’t Ehr oll Köter wesen ded.”

„Mein Hund? – mein Pollo biss Sie in die Waden?

Nun gut! Ich glaub’s und stehe für den Schaden:

Hier sind drei Taler für die Hosen.

Was recht ist, muss auch recht bestehn

25Und sollt’ die Welt in Stücken gehn.”

De Möller lacht so recht gottlosen

Un denkt: De hesst du richtig nommen!

Strikt sick dat lütte Geld tausamen

Un will gehorsamst sick empfehlen.

30„Halt, lieber Freund!” seggt de Avkat,

„Ich kann es Ihnen nicht verhehlen,

dass in beregter Sach’ für Müh’ und guten Rat

Drei Taler sechzehn Groschen mir gebühren.

Nun weder rut mit de drei Taler,

und söstein Gröschen bi geleggt!

Denn kommt de Sak erst richtig t’recht.

Recht, Fründing, möt as Recht bestahn,

un süll de Welt in Stücken gahn!”

From Otto Hattstädt, Professor am Concordia Gymnasium, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Handbuch der deutschen Nationalliteratur von ihrem ersten Anfängen bis zur Gegenwart, (St. Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing House, 1906), page 493.

Written by peterkrey

November 11, 2008 at 7:42 pm

2 Responses

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. […] „I know you had a blow-out!“ said my little brother, who didn’t realize that the poem was about being bitten by a dog. (I’ve translated this poem from the Mechlenburg Plattdeutsch and   translated it here: G’d Morning, Sir Advocate.) […]

  2. […] „I know you had a blow-out!“ said my little brother, who didn’t realize that the poem was about being bitten by a dog. (I’ve translated this poem from the Mechlenburg Plattdeutsch and it’s in my poems now. T read it click HERE) […]


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: