is a setting of Der Kühne
(‘The Bold Man’), an eerie exercise in Romantic folklore with under- and overtones of Eichendorff’s characteristic religious meanings (he was a dogmatic Roman Catholic). A bold hunter goes above and beyond the limits explored by others in his pursuit of Nature and sensuality; in his sinfulness, he vanishes from all knowledge into the depths of the forest (that age-old symbol of the subconscious) once he declares his allegiance to love. For this quasi-medievalizing poem, Mendelssohn uses the ‘alt-Deutsch’ musical style, full of horn-calls and dotted rhythms, associated with tales of knights and castles in nineteenth-century song.
from notes by Susan Youens © 2010