Walther von der Vogelweide. Walthers Minnesang als reflektierende Lyrik

Essay, 2019

5 Pages, Grade: 1,7



'Uberhaupt ist Walthers Minnesang reflektierende Lyrik: das sprechende Ich rasoniert uber die Minne, denkt uber sein Leid und die Ursachen desselben nach, wagt ab, ringt um Erklarungen, setzt Grenzen/ Discuss.

Unfortunately, today we do not know much about the lecture situation and the meaning with the identical real author. Elisabeth Lienert, however, creates by approaching the author through her internal singing role. Because: 'Methodisch sind autopoetische Aussagen des Sangers [...] Kunstaussagen auf der Ebene der liedinternen Rollen, [die] nicht mit Autoraussagen gleichzusetzen [sind]' (Lienert 115). Lienert argues that there are no direct author statements in Minnesang, but rather that one could speak of the author aspect of the singer role (Lienert 116). In their opinion, author and lecturer coincide in the singer-ego, unless the motif of the song is the lecture to a lover by a messenger or the courted lady herself reads the message conveyed to her. Lienert takes the view that the author usually disappears behind the performer, leaving traces at best in so-called 'author-specific characteristics' resulting from the characterization and design of the singer roles (Lienert 118). Therefore, it is now necessary to discover the roles through which Walther lets his 'lyrisches Ich' speak. There are roughly two types of roles. On the one hand, the role of the 'Minnenden', the advertising I, and on the other hand, the role of the Singing I, for the one thing in relation to the service to the lady and on the other hand, in relation to the service to society. Moreover, both roles can also be related to each other.

Ir houbet ist so wunnen rich,

als ez mln himel welle sin.

Wem mohte ez anders sin gellch?

Ez hat ouch himeleschen schln.

Da liuhtent zwene sterne abe,

da mueze ich mich noch inne ersehen. (Walther in Schweikle 144)

The wip is celebrated beyond all measure, its beauty praised and compared with great images, like the shining starry sky. The listener is made happy with the rather rhetorical question Wem mohte ez anders sin gelich? And is put in the same position as the mincing ego. In contrast, the singing ego stands in relation to the service to the lady, as in the following example:

Froide und sorge erkenne ich beide,

da von singe ich, swaz ich sol.

mir ist liebe, mir ist leide,

summerwunne tuot mir wol.

Swaz ich leides han,

daz tuot zwivelwan,

wie ez mir umb die lieben sul ergan. (Walther in Schweikle 394)

The uncertainty about the lover makes the singer raise his voice. He knows the light and dark aspects of his life, but it is his suffering that makes him sing. The singer feels confronted with the question with which song he can receive thanks. The 'lyrisches Ich' in Walther's minnesongs cannot be thought of without a role confession attached to it. The 'lyrisches Ich' in his songs does not speak from an objective point of view, but always slips into a certain role. These roles can be varied. In minnesongs, such as the well-known Under der linden, the 'lyrisches Ich' speaks from the perspective of a woman.

ich kam gegangen

zuo der ouwe,

do was min friedel komen e.

da wart ich enpfangen,

-here frouwel-

daz ich bin saelic iemer me.

er kuste mich wol tusent stunt, tandaradei,

seht wie rot mir ist der munt. (Walther in Schweikle 228)

The terms friedel and frouwe, on the other hand, clearly show that the singer I speaks from the perspective of a woman who tells of a love encounter with a man. The woman proudly confesses: er kuste mich; seht wie rot mir ist der munt. The role assignment of the 'lyrisches Ich' can be clearly defined. Hardly any other woman in minnesong appears as vividly as the first- person speaker of the 'Lindenlied1. In the canzone with Walther's three-line studs from the Vogelweide, the flowers are already broken: da mugent ihr vinden//schone beide//gebrochen bluomen unde gras (Walther in Schweikle 230).

The mood depicted in Walther's song is less commanding, but all the more cheerful: the song of the nightingale echoes in the forest, and onomatopoetically probably also the song of the poet in front of his audience in tandaradei. The first-person speaker in the song is taken with love, indulging in romantic daydreaming. She was not broken, and certainly not by force, but by the spell of inaccessibility in the minne: her lover is now allowed to create a bed for them both with the broken flowers:

Do hat er gemachet

also riche

von bluomen eine bettestat.

des wirt nochgelachet


kumt iemen an daz selbe pfat.

Bi den rosen er wol mac,


merken, wa mirz houbet lac (Walther in Schweikle 230)

The roses had to be broken, but even if they withered, they remain as a memorial for the later lovers who yearn for minne. The breaking of flowers is thus a pleasurable and selfless sacrifice on the level of fiction as well as on the poetic meta-level, because in the performance of singing, role and performance reality coincide. Thus, the flower breaks in Under der linden is also a break with the concept of the High minne; an overcoming. Consequently, the plasticity of the first-person speaker also makes the change in the understanding of courtly love immanent in the song expressive, since the courtly minne-ideal had praised a love marked by reason. The poet seems much more likely to have invented a poetic trick with the female role in order to counteractthe problem ofsubjectivity.

The problem is the poetic space inherent in the 'lyrisches Ich': the 'lyrisches Ich' is neither a figure nor a narrator and certainly not a poet, as Walther von der Vogelweide demonstrates, as the author of his song detaches himself from the subjectivity of it by allowing a fictitious woman to appear as first-person speaker without at the same time explicitly marking the role reversal. In this way, the 'lyrisches Ich' finally frees itself on the meta-level from a possible relation to the poet.

In a way, the 'lyrisches Ich' is the access to another form of communication that not only tells in one way, but also involves the recipient, because it only acquires its expressiveness when the recipient hands it over. Of course, it cannot be assumed that minnesingers saw themselves as mediators with an ideological mission, but minnesingers are not only interwoven with deictic expressions with regard to the 'lyrisches Ich', but with references which they call deictic slogans, and which provide information about the poet's self-understanding and his poetry.


Excerpt out of 5 pages


Walther von der Vogelweide. Walthers Minnesang als reflektierende Lyrik
University of Cambridge
Catalog Number
ISBN (eBook)
Vogelweide, Ich, Walther
Quote paper
Anonymous, 2019, Walther von der Vogelweide. Walthers Minnesang als reflektierende Lyrik, Munich, GRIN Verlag, https://www.grin.com/document/535552


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