Name of a famous song
, composed by Franz Schubert
in 1815. Based on a poem with the same name by Goethe
. The theme of the song centers around a father who is riding on his horse like mad to save his dying child. The dwarf
king (Erlkönig, also known as the Erlking
) tries to entice the child in his arms. The song ends on a sad note, with the father holding the dead child in his arms.
Wer reitet so spat durch Nacht
Es ist der Vater mit seinem Kind...
The Erlkönig theme also plays a prominent role in the book by Robert Pirsig 'Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance'.