Dance Of Death: King and Queen.

Click for full size. I like the way Death addresses them as Mr. King and Mrs. Queen.

Todt zum König:
Herr König Ewr G’walt hat ein End,
Ich führ euch hie bey meiner Hend,
An diesen dürren Brüder-Tantz,
Da gibt man euch deß Todes-Krantz.

Death to The king:
Mr. King, your power has an end,
I lead you here by my hand
to this dance with dry brothers.
There they’ll give you the death-garland.

Der König:
Ich hab gewaltiglich gelebt,
Und in hohen Ehren geschwebt:
Nun bin ich in deß Todtes Banden,
Verstricket sehr in seinen Handen.

The king:
I have lived powerfully
and hovered in high honour.
Now I’m in Death’s bond,
caught in his hands.

Todt zur Königin:
Fraw Königin Euwr Frewd ist auß,
Springen mit mir ins Todten-Hauß,
Euch hilfft kein Schöne, Gold noch Gelt,
Ich spring mit euch in jene Welt.

Death to The Queen:
Mrs. Queen, your joy has ended,
dance with me into the death-house.
Neither beauty, gold nor money will help you.
I’m dancing with you into the next world.

Die Königin:
O Weh vnd Ach, O weh vnd jmmer,
Wo ist jetzund mein Frawenzimmer,
Mit denen ich hatt Frewden viel:
O Todt thu g’mach, mit mir nicht eyl.

The queen:
Oh woe and alas, oh woe for ever.
Where is now my band of maids
with whom I had many pleasures?
Oh Death, take it easy, don’t hurry with me.


  1. says

    I do too! It’s very cool. In The Queen, it’s interesting because at least Death’s breasts look like they were used; the queen and the empress before her have these weird, perfectly spherical breasts, like they had oranges stuffed in there or something.

  2. Zeppelin says

    Herr and Frau are titles of address for high-ranking people in older German, so Death isn’t really calling them “Mr.” and “Mrs.” (which also derive from “master” and “mistress”, you’ll notice) in the modern sense. It’s more like Lord King and Lady Queen. In church for example, God is still addressed with “o Herr!” (cf. “o Lord!”).

  3. jazzlet says

    Perhaps the queen and the empress made use of wet nurses to keep their breasts more perky.

  4. says

    Jazzlet, I’d assume as much, but all of Hess’s women have these perfectly spherical breasts. The ‘Young Woman’s’ breasts are distinguished by being larger, but still spherical. This must have been the land of Perfectly Spherical Breasts™. :D

  5. says

    Probably symbolism for how royalty are perfect in every way, except the final way, they still have to die.

  6. says

    No, I don’t think so. The perfectly spherical breasts were on non-noble women too. Maybe it was wishful thinking, or perhaps one of Hess’s lifetime pursuits was finding the perfectly spherical breast. Also, looking at the clothing, the top of her dress isn’t at all natural. To get that skin tight look all the way around the breasts, there would have to be cups moulded in the garment.

    All that said, I adore that dress! Those dreamy sleeves.

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