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Ja, vi elsker dette landet
English: Yes, we love this country
National anthem of  Norway
Lyrics Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson, 1868
Music Rikard Nordraak, 1864
Adopted 1864

About this sound "Ja, vi elsker dette landet" (In English: "Yes, we love this country") is the national anthem of Norway. It is commonly referred to as just "Ja, vi elsker" ("Yes, we love"). The lyrics were written by Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson between 1859 and 1868, and the melody was written by his cousin Rikard Nordraak in 1864. It was first performed publicly on 17 May 1864 in connection with the 50th anniversary of the constitution. Usually only the first and the last two verses are sung.

Contents

Lyrics, literal translation, and poetic translation

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Bjørnson wrote a modified version of the Dano-Norwegian language current in Norway at the time. Written Norwegian (bokmål) has since then been altered in a series of orthographic reforms intended to distinguish it from Danish and bring it closer to spoken Norwegian. The text below is a modernised version commonly used to day, not identical to Bjørnson's original. The most commonly sung verses, 1, 7 and 8, have been modernised most.

In each verse the last two lines are sung twice, and one or two words are even repeated an extra time (for example "senker" in the first verse). This repetition is often not indicated, except in the first verse. The words that are repeated an extra time are written in italics in the Norwegian lyrics below (except in the first verse, which is written down fully).


JA, VI ELSKER DETTE LANDET (Yes, we love this country)
1
Ja, vi elsker dette landet, Yes, we love this country
som det stiger frem, as it rises forth,
furet, værbitt over vannet, rugged, weathered, above the sea,
med de tusen hjem. with the thousands of homes.
Elsker, elsker det og tenker Love, love it and think
på vår far og mor of our father and mother
og den saganatt som senker and the saga night that sends
drømmer på vår jord. dreams to our earth.
og den saganatt som senker and the saga night that sends
senker drømmer på vår jord. sends dreams to our earth.
2
Dette landet Harald berget This country Harald united
med sin kjemperad, with his army of heroes,
dette landet Håkon verget this country Håkon protected
medens Øyvind kvad; whilst Øyvind sung;
Olav på det landet malte upon the country Olav painted
korset med sitt blod, with his blood the cross,
fra dets høye Sverre talte from its heights Sverre spoke
Roma midt imot. up against Rome.
3
Bønder sine økser brynte Farmers their axes sharpened
hvor en hær dro frem, wherever an army advanced,
Tordenskiold langs kysten lynte, Tordenskiold along the coastline thundered
så det lystes hjem. so that we could see it back home.
Kvinner selv stod opp og strede Even women stood up and fought
som de vare menn; as if they were men;
andre kunne bare grede, others could only cry
men det kom igjen! but that soon would end!
4
Visstnok var vi ikke mange, Sure, we were not many
men vi strakk dog til, but we were enough,
da vi prøvdes noen gange, when we were tested sometimes,
og det stod på spill; and it was at stake;
ti vi heller landet brente we would rather burn our land
enn det kom til fall; than to declare defeat;
husker bare hva som hendte just remember what happened
ned på Fredrikshald! down at Fredrikshald!
5
Hårde tider har vi døyet, Hard times we have coped with,
ble til sist forstøtt; were at last disowned;
men i verste nød blåøyet but in the worst distress, blue-eyed
frihet ble oss født. freedom was to us born.
Det gav faderkraft å bære It gave (us) father's strength to carry
hungersnød og krig, famine and war,
det gav døden selv sin ære - it gave death itself its honour -
og det gav forlik. and it gave reconciliation.
6
Fienden sitt våpen kastet, The enemy threw away his weapon,
opp visiret for, up the visor went,
vi med undren mot ham hastet, we, in wonder, to him hastened,
ti han var vår bror. because he was our brother.
Drevne frem på stand av skammen Driven forth to a stand by shame
gikk vi søderpå; we went to the south;
nu vi står tre brødre sammen, now we three brothers stand united,
og skal sådan stå! and shall stand like that!
7
Norske mann i hus og hytte, Norseman in house and cabin,
takk din store Gud! thank your great God!
Landet ville han beskytte, The country he wanted to protect,
skjønt det mørkt så ut. although things looked dark.
Alt hva fedrene har kjempet, All the fights fathers have fought,
mødrene har grett, and the mothers have wept,
har den Herre stille lempet the Lord has quietly moved
vi vant vår rett. so we won our rights.
8
Ja, vi elsker dette landet, Yes, we love this country
som det stiger frem, as it rises forth,
furet, værbitt over vannet, rugged, weathered, above the sea,
med de tusen hjem. with those thousand homes.
Og som fedres kamp har hevet And as the fathers' struggle has raised
det av nød til seir, it from need to victory,
også vi, når det blir krevet, even we, when it is demanded,
for dets fred slår leir. for its peace will encamp (for defence).


English translation

The three commonly used stanzas of Ja, vi elsker were translated into English long ago. The name of the translator is seldom mentioned in printed versions of the English text. It has so far not been possible to identify the person responsible or to ascertain when it was translated. But the following versions of stanzas 1, 7, and 8 are well known and often sung by descendants of Norwegian immigrants to the United States. Its popularity and familiarity among Norwegian-Americans seems to indicate that it has been around for a long time, certainly since before the middle of the 20th century, and possibly much earlier. This translation may be regarded as the "official" version in English.[1]

Yes, we love with fond devotion

This our land that looms

Rugged, storm-scarred o'er the ocean

With her thousand homes.

Love her, in our love recalling

Those who gave us birth.

And old tales which night, in falling,

Brings as dreams to earth.


Norsemen whatsoe'er thy station,

Thank thy God whose power

willed and wrought the land's salvation

In her darkest hour.

All our mothers sought with weeping

And our sires in fight,

God has fashioned in His keeping

Till we gained our right.


Yes, we love with fond devotion

This our land that looms

Rugged, storm-scarred o'er the ocean

With her thousand homes.

And, as warrior sires have made her

Wealth and fame increase,

At the call we too will aid her

Armed to guard her peace.

Metrical version

Of verses 1, 7, 8 for singing in English:

Norway, thine is our devotion,
Land of hearth and home,
Rising storm-scarr'd from the ocean,
Where the breakers foam.
Oft to thee our thoughts are wending,
Land that gave us birth,
And to saga nights still sending
Dreams upon our earth,
And to saga nights still sending
Dreams upon us on our earth

Men of Norway, be your dwelling
Cottage, house or farm,
Praise the Lord who all compelling
Sav'd our land from harm.
Not the valour of a father
On the battlefield
Nor a mother's tears, but rather
God our vict'ry sealed,
Nor a mother's tears, but rather
God for us our vict'ry sealed.

Norway, thine is our devotion,
Land of hearth and home,
Rising storm-scarr'd from the ocean,
Where the breakers foam.
As our fathers' vict'ry gave it
Peace for one and all,
We shall rally, too, to save it
When we hear the call,
We shall rally, too, to save it
When we hear, we hear the call.

Deleted verse a tribute to King Carl XV

A verse hailing the then newly acceded monarch Carl XV (Karl IV of Norway) who had succeeded his father as king of Norway in July 1859 was included in the original version of "Ja, vi elsker". However, following the divisive international events of the spring of 1864 where the ideal of a unified Scandinavia was coldly shattered, Bjørnson went from being a monarchist to republicanism, and the tribute to the reigning sovereign was stricken from the song.

The lyrics that were taken out were:

Kongen selv staar stærk og aapen
som vaar Grænsevagt
og hans allerbedste Vaapen
er vor Broderpagt.

In English this reads:

The King himself stands strong and open
As our border guard
and his most powerful weapon
is our brethren pact.

The "brethren pact" which the text is referring to was a military treaty between Norway, Sweden and Denmark to come to the assistance should one of the nations come under military assault. This happened when German troops invaded South Jutland in February 1864. None of the alliance partners came to the rescue of Denmark. This perceived treason of the "brethren pact" once and for all shattered many people's dreams of unification of the three countries.[2]

Controversies

In 1905 the Union between Sweden and Norway was dissolved after many years of Norwegian struggle for equality between the two states, as stipulated in the 1815 Act of Union. The unilateral declaration by the Norwegian Storting of the union's dissolution 7 June provoked strong Swedish reactions, bringing the two nations to the brink of war in the autumn. In Sweden, pro-war conservatives were opposed by the Social Democrats, whose leaders Hjalmar Branting and Zeth Höglund spoke out for reconciliation and a peaceful settlement with Norway. Swedish socialists sang Ja, vi elsker dette landet to demonstrate their support for the Norwegian people’s right to secede from the union.

During World War II, the anthem was used both by the Norwegian resistance and the Nazi collaborators, the latter group mainly for propaganda reasons. Eventually, the German occupiers officially forbade any use of the anthem.

In May 2006, the multicultural newspaper Utrop proposed that the national anthem be translated into Urdu, the native language of the most numerous group of recent immigrants to Norway.[3] The editor's idea was that people from other ethnic groups should be able to honour their adopted country with devotion, even if they were not fluent in Norwegian. This proposal was referred to by other more widely read papers, and a member of the Storting called the proposal "integration in reverse".[4] One proponent of translating the anthem received batches of hate-mail calling her a traitor and threatening her with decapitation.[5]

Trivia

External links

References

  1. ^ H2G2
  2. ^ Bomann-Larsen, Tor (2002). "Alt for Norge" (in Norwegian). Kongstanken. Haakon & Maud. 1. Oslo, Norway: J.W. Cappelen. pp. 23–24. ISBN 82-02-19092-4.  
  3. ^ Vil ha «Ja vi elsker» på urdu
  4. ^ Fr.p. sier nei til "Ja vi elsker" på urdu
  5. ^ http://oslopuls.no/nyheter/article1324897.ece

Simple English

"Ja, vi elsker dette landet", in English, "Yes, we love this country" is the Norwegian national anthem.

It is commonly referred to as only "Ja, vi elsker", "Yes, we love". The lyrics were written by Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson, and melody by his cousin, Rikard Nordraak.

The first verse goes like this:

"Ja, vi elsker dette landet,
som det stiger frem,
furet, værbitt over vannet,
med de tusen hjem,
elsker, elsker det og tenker,
på vår far og mor,
på den saganatt som senker,
drømmer på vår jord,
på den saganatt som senker,
senker drømmer på vår jord."


Roughly translated to English:

"Yes, we love this country,
as it rises forth,
wrinkled, weather-beaten over the water,
with the thousand homes,
loving it, loving it and thinking,
of our father and mother,
of the saga night that lowers,
dreams upon our earth,
of the saga night that lowers,
lowers dreams upon our earth."








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