The song's second version has exactly the same text and key (the original tonality is B minor) but the tune itself is of a subtly different cast. Both versions were written on the same piece of paper, the changes made to the tune of the first version were written in red pencil. Those upward inflections are gone. Now 'länger' and 'Pilger' droop downward; the setting of 'Leiden Last' is in plain quavers in the middle of the stave instead of a gracefully turned triplet. The tessitura is all somewhat lower; gone are the high notes, or rather they are saved for the final cadence. The effect is undeniably darker. When we hear the second version straight after the first it is as if we are hearing the middle part of a choral setting, or something conceived more for baritone than tenor. There is no bar of introduction in the second setting, but the postlude is exactly the same. The whole is a fascinating glimpse into the Schubertian workshop and an example of how he took pains to revise, particularly when he felt there was a way of better serving the words. It is the first version, however, perhaps because of its gently haunting juxtaposition of rising and falling phrases, which seemed more immediately attractive. It was published both by Diabelli in the Nachlass
, and by Friedländer in the Peters Edition. The commentators seem to have missed the fact that the second version of the song also has a Rosamunde
connection in the Minore I
section of the same Entr'acte (Minore II
is a variation of Minore I
in any case) where the second bar of the tune falls rather than rises. It is rather likely that Schubert liked both versions of the song and saw them as different ways of looking at suffering—two sides of the same coin.
from notes by Graham Johnson © 1995