Tune of the Day: Loreley
The Lorelei, or Loreley, is a rock on the eastern bank of the Rhine near the town of St. Goarshausen, Germany, which soars some 120 metres above the waterline. A very strong current and rocks below the waterline have caused many boat accidents there. Lorelei is also the name of a feminine water spirit, similar to mermaids, associated with this rock in popular folklore.
In 1824, poet Heinrich Heine adapted the folk tale of the Lorelei in one of his most famous poems, Die Lorelei, which describes the eponymous character as a sort of siren who, sitting on the cliff above the Rhine and combing her golden hair, unwittingly distracted shipmen with her beauty and song, causing them to crash on the rocks. In 1837 Heine's lyrics were set to music by composer Friedrich Silcher in the art song Lorelei, that became well known in German-speaking lands.