Schubert and Greek mythology part two
"Die Götter Greichenlands", D 677/Schiller/1819.
Schubert was quite often selective when it came to choosing the number of verses he wished to set in a particular poem (indeed there are times when one wishes that he hadn't chosen all of them — I refer to many
of the strophic Lieder.) The case of "Die Götter Griechenlands" is different in this respect: Schubert sets just one of the sixteen verses in Schiller's ode. (I have a notion that Schubert sometimes simply lost interest in a song, and contented himself with setting just one verse: a case in point is "Die Sterbende", D 186 — and there are many others.) Schiller praises the glory of Greece on one hand and laments the lost paradise of the Romantic imagination on the other. Schubert sets the verse that best expresses that sense of loss. There are thematic links to the violin sonata in A (D 574), the A minor string quartet, "Leichenfantasie", D 7 and Morgenlied, D 685.