The Panzerlied is one of the best known Wehrmacht songs. It was composed in June 1933 by Oberleutnant Kurt Wiehle while on his way to Königsbrück. Wiehle adapted a German sailor's song, writing lyrics more appropriate to the Panzerwaffe. At the time, Germany was clandestinely developing an armored force in defiance of the Treaty of Versailles. The song could be considered as a reflection of the German re-armament, launched in the same time frame as the song was written.
It has gained fame in the English-speaking world due to its usage in the 1965 film Battle of the Bulge. While throughout that film German characters speak English, the song is sung in the original German.
The song is also sung by the Chilean Military and the tune is used for the French Foreign Legion song "Képi Blanc" and, unofficially, by some motorized and parachute units of the Italian army. The song is also used by the South Korean Army sung in Korean as a Marching Song for its Tank and other Motorized units.
The tune of the Panzerlied is used as the unofficial anthem for the German community of Namibia, and the unofficial anthem of the then South African-ruled South-West Africa (present day Namibia). This song is known as "Das Südwesterlied" or "Hart wie Kameldornholz".
The tune of the Panzerlied was also used as the marching anthem of the fictional Kuromorimine Girls High School from the anime Girls und Panzer.
Original lyrics[edit | edit source]
Originally, the last three lines of every verse were repeated. It was later changed so that only the last line is repeated.
Lyrics and translation[edit | edit source]
|German lyrics||Best English Translation|
Ob's stürmt oder schneit,
ob die Sonne uns lacht,
oder eiskalt die Nacht,
doch froh ist unser Sinn, ja, unser Sinn.
Es braust unser Panzer im Sturmwind dahin. (x2)
If it storms or snows, or the sun smiles on us,
They roll, our tanks, forward into the storm's wind. (x2)
Mit donnernden Motor'n,
So schnell wie der Blitz,
im Panzer geschützt.
Im Kampfe ganz allein, ja ganz allein.
So stoßen wir tief in die feindlichen Reih'n! (x2)
With thundering engines, as fast as lightning,
Thus we plunge deep into the enemies ranks! (x2)
Wenn vor uns ein feindliches
Heer dann erscheint,
und ran an den Feind!
für uns'res Reiches Heer? Ja, Reiches Heer.
Für Deutschland zu sterben ist uns höchste Ehr'. (x2)
When before us a hostile army appears then,
To die for Germany is our highest honor. (x2)
Mit Sperren und Minen
hält der Gegner uns auf,
und fahren nicht drauf.
versteckt im gelben Sand, im gelben Sand.
Wir suchen uns Wege, die keiner sonst fand. (x2)
With obstacles and mines the foe blocks our path,
We search for ways, that no one else found. (x2)
Und läßt uns im Stich
einst das treulose Glück,
zur Heimat zurück,
ruft uns das Schicksal ab, das Schicksal ab.
Dann wird uns der Panzer ein ehernes Grab! (x2)
And if we are abandoned by treacherous luck,
Then the tank shall become an iron grave for us! (x2)
See also[edit | edit source]
- Königgrätzer Marsch
- Es war ein Edelweiss
- March of the Soviet Tankmen
- Panzer Division
Referencesand notes[edit | edit source]
- Movie clip (YouTube video)
- Originally, the last line of every verse was repeated, but this is not the case in the performance from Battle of the Bulge; also, only the first verse is sung, and repeated several times.
- Chilean Military Parade, September 19th 2010 (YouTube video)
[edit | edit source]
- Ingeb Panzerlied page - link to singable English version
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