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Wotan and Brünnhilde in Die Wälkure

    In Die Wälkure, there emerges a story which becomes, at one and the same time, the unfolding of a potent personal relationship, and an allegorical representation of the main thematic pulse of the entire cycle. The relationship is that of Wotan to Brünnhilde; of father to daughter, of commander to soldier, of mind to heart.

    Two main sequences serve to illustrate this relationship, and do so vividly; the first is Act II Scene ii, the second could be considered practically all of Act III, but specifically is from the end of Act III Scene ii to the end of the opera. Although both are equally important with regards to content, as well as emotionally and musically gripping, the focus of this discussion shall rest mainly on the end of the opera, with the second Act mentioned only to draw parallels between the two scenes. In fact, both scenes bear a striking resemblance to one another, as if one were a picture portrait of these two characters and the other, the negative.

    Act III opens at fever pitch; Brünnhilde is being chased down my her father, Wotan. She has protected Siegmund the Wälsung against Wotan’s orders, but in accordance with his will, and it is from this internal conflict that we learn the torment of Wotan. After Wotan’s outburst in Act II “Auf geb ich mein Werke; nur eines will ich noch: das Ende!” (Porter 80),  we realize this is not the power hungry Wotan from Das Rheingold, but a man tortured by seeing his world unravel before him because of his own actions, and who is now simply trying to set things right. But even at this, he fails, and although he struggles against his own demise, he does so with the knowledge that he will fall and the reality of his world will end. This is why, when he finally confronts Brünnhilde, it is, as Kitcher puts it, with “a fury that clearly is being fueled by a good deal more than Brünnhilde’s action alone, reflecting the depths of this anguish at the impossibility of his own situation and the devastation of his hopes and dreams.” (122)

    Yet even from the start of his rage against his daughter, one hears an intriguing twist on a familiar yet ever-evolving theme: the spear motive, symbol of Wotan’s power and will, which has since been manipulated into a raging storm (Wagner 7/1/1-2) and the manifestation of a frustrated inner conflict (235/1/3-5), now becomes Wotan’s identification of Brünnhilde’s crime and betrayal (559/3/1).  Since it is heard in connection with Wotan’s anger at or description of Brünnhilde’s crime and betrayal, this latest transformation can be called the crime motive, but this motive is not merely a variation on the spear motive; it is a  composite motive of Wotan’s and Brünnhilde’s (see appendix for an illustration of the thematic transformation and the composite nature of the crime motive). In this crime motive, after the furious line of the spear motive (signifying Wotan’s terrible power) crashes to its depths, an immediate diminuendo reveals that underneath the strings’ tumult is a plaintive, rising motive in the low brass which, while it resembles the fate motive, reaches yet higher. It will become, in Scene iii, representative not only of Brünnhilde but also her reconciliation with Wotan. (559/3/3-4, 598/1/4-7) This composite motive reflects how deep down Brünnhilde is within Wotan, that they are essentially bound and connected, and on the most basic level, he knows what she did was right.

    The crime motive first appears on Db, to introduce “So wisst denn, Winselnde,/was sie verbrach to Keine wie sie/annte mein innerstes Sinnen” (559/3/1); it rises to E-flat for “keine wie sie wusste den Quell meines Willens” (560/1/5-6), and finally reaches F with “Sie selbst war/meines Wunsches schaffender Schoss” (560/2/5-6). Throughout this speech, structured by short, furious vocal lines punctuated by this crime motive, Wotan is agitating himself more and more with the rising modulation (Corse 63), until, at the third iteration, something changes. Where before Wotan’s words had been unaccompanied lines between orchestral outbursts, during this third iteration, specifically on the word “Wunsches”, we hear a piano dominant seventh chord in the strings (Wagner 560/3/4). The next appearance of the interjectory crime motive slips from F back down to E-flat; it starts forte but cannot sustain its anger; a diminuendo ushers in a soft chordal texture with slower harmonic motion. (560/3/5-7) “Und so nun brach sie/den seligen Bund” is delivered over a piano orchestral texture, as opposed to the violent fragments and outbursts heard thus far (561/1/1). The climax and end of this explanation comes before he addresses Brünnhilde personally, when he says “gegen mich die Waffe gewandt,/die mein Wunsch allein ihr schuf!” (561/2/4) Under this reversal of power, wherein Brünnhilde used Wotan’s own bestowed weapon against him (either in the physical or metaphorical sense), the orchestra erupts into the spear motive, symbol of Wotan’s power, but this time it is inverted; as his power has been set against him, his actions bear opposite results than he hoped, and his meticulously constructed world collapses under the breath of reality: his entire essence, which is in that selfsame spear, is literally turned upside down (561/2/4-6). He punishes her, not as Wotan the loving father, but as Wotan the god of contracts, seeking to right a wrong against his own wife’s dominion over marital fortitude. He is trying to instill justice and create equilibrium again; but the world was set off balance by a far stronger offense, and the time has come for a complete restructuring of the world, one he aids by making Brünnhilde a mortal.

    But he does not know this now, he is still in a blind fury, contrasted sharply by Brünnhilde’s quiet dignity.  She steps from the protection of her sisters and says, at the peak of a floating arpeggio in the bass clarinet, which will come to symbolize her: Hier bin ich, Vater: gebiete die Strafe! (562-563)  It is important to notice the contrast in the two characters’ demeanors because as will become more obvious in the third and final scene, it is as if Wotan is talking to, arguing with, and yes even condemning, himself. Through her actions and her love, Brünnhilde has become more noble than Wotan, and through the ‘imperfection’ of mortality, she shall gain ever more a true partaking of the divine through this love. Brünnhilde is, after all, transforming into something better, more noble; something Wotan, try though he might, was never able to do.

    This scene was taken quite literally from Wagner’s sources; in the Poetic Edda there is the description that
Odin, as punishment, ...pricked [Brynhild] with a sleep-thorn, and said that form then on she should never again win victory in battle, but should be married. ‘But I said to him [Brynhild speaking] that I had made a vow never to marry a man who could be afraid.” (as quoted in Cooke 346-7)1

    Cooke explains the differences, mainly that in the Edda Brynhild is a human who must give up her life as a warrior for marriage, whereas Brünnhilde’s punishment is far more severe and degrading in that she was an immortal who has had her divinity stripped from her “but there can be no doubt that Wagner saw the metamorphosis of the cold, Wotan-dominated Valkyrie into a warm, compassionate, and rebellious woman as a great step forward in humanity’s quest for a world based on fellowship and love.” (Cooke 347) This is true, for in a very real sense the final scene of Die Walküre is the end of the mythological part of the Ring and the start of the humanistic part. It is true that in Siegfried Wotan is seen wandering the face of the earth in disguise, seemingly lost in amusement at his impending demise. He retains this mask even during the final confrontation with Siegfried, where the imagery of the young sweeping away the old, the human triumphing over the god, becomes blantantly obvious. Any thought that Wotan had come to terms with things after his defeat is denied in Götterdämmerung when Waltraute, also in defiance of Wotan’s order from the final scene of Die Walküre, finds Brünnhilde, now human, and explains how he sits in silence in his magnificent Valhalla, surrounded by his heroes, embracing the shatters splinters of his spear, passively awaiting das Ende which he so passionately asked for in Die Walküre. From this moment on in the Ring saga, the gods fade into the darkness; the only supernatural beings who even make an appearance in Götterdämmerung are the Rheinmaidens, through whom equilibrium is regained, and arguably the omniscient Loge (in fire form only), the vehicle of the change. All the troubles which were caused by the gods will be answered for by humans; the balance once tipped by the king of the gods will be reset by his insolent daughter who longed more for justice and compassion than obedience and denial.

    In keeping with the present topic, but not to get too far ahead of oneself, while the Poetic Edda illustrates a version of how Brünnhilde sank into sleep, chapter 21 of the Saga of the Volsungs, another main source for Wagner while writing the Ring, explains how she was awakened, here by Sigurd the dragon slayer, who finds Brynhild asleep amid a mountainous fire “[whose] brightness reached up to the heavens.” (Byock 67)  Wagner’s imagery at the end of Götterdämmerung were likely informed by this vivid illustration.

    But before we destroy Valhalla, we must redeem its originator. We last left Wotan and his daughter as she calmly but resolutely approached her father, attempting to plead her case and accept her punishment. Her request, “gebiete die Strafe!” (Wagner 563/1/1-2) is answered cryptically and angrily by Wotan’s reproach, “Nicht straf ich dich erst:/deine Strafe schufst de dir selbst.” (563/1/4-6) He goes on, in a narrative punctuated by the looming death motive in the timpani, to explain her defiance (which she is still exemplifying) to her: she, who could not but obey his will, had commanded against him. Yet even at his climactic accusation, “gegen mich doch reiztest du Helden”, when he’s exhausted all his rhetorical invective, the orchestral outburst still subsides to that floating three-note motive fragment which shows that his anger is fleeting; as we shall see, his real dilemma is pain, and fear. (566/1/2-5, 566/2/1-3)

    And yet after yet another emotional climax when Wotan declares, “Wunschmaid bist du nicht mehr;/Walküre bist du gewesen:/nun sei fortan,/was so du noch bist!” (567-8),  Brünnhilde again replies briefly, yet with fear and dread, and Wotan continues still. Where before he stipulated her offense, now he enumerates all the joys of divinity which she shall never again enjoy. This castigation ends with his declaration, “gebrochen ist under Bund;/aus meinen Angesicht bist du verbannt” which is followed by a doubly extended statement of the spear motive, signifying the strength of Wotan’s conviction to his decision. (572-3)

    The Valkyries clamor in futile protest, and Brünnhilde questions Wotan’s judgment, but he is undeterred and, not letting his temper settle, he continues. Her plea, “Nimmst du mir alles,/ was einst du gabst?”  is answered by Wotan in near identical melodic structure a minor third lower (574/4-6, 575/1-4), the interval of the minor third not only allowing both lines to be delivered over the parallel E-flat dim7/C dim7 chord, strengthening the bond between judge and subject, but has also by this point in the operas been associated with the fate motive, and also the curse of the gold and the upper reaches of the Wälsung’s theme (see appendix). That is not to say that this harmonic relation would be consciously comprehended upon hearing the fleeting question-and-answer setting of Wotan’s and Brünnhilde’s lines, but rather that this minor third interval is an intrinsic element in some of the most distinct motives (Erda, minor version of the Gold and Nothung), and it is associated with trouble, with things going awry, and things doomed to failure.

    An interesting thing happens almost immediately after Wotan starts to sing: over his description of how Brünnhilde is to remain on the rock, the woodwinds play a sparky two-note fragment which would be much more recognizable to the listener. This is Loge’s music, the music of fire, and it lends credence to Cooke’s idea of the “demonic mental inspiration” that Loge offers, that it was somehow he who entered Brünnhilde’s mind to suddenly inspire her to suggest a protective ring of fire to accompany her slumber (352). While that may be true, and it would be in keeping with the impression Loge gave in Das Rheingold of the all knowing knave who, while not in control of everything, knows how everything will end, this ‘suggestion’ happens much earlier than the spot where Brünnhilde ‘suddenly’ gets her inspiration.  (575/4-5 to be exact, rather than the more obvious appearance on 646-7) So what is to be made of this? Perhaps Loge is present, as he seems to always be, and he is making himself known to the listener, but his subtle presence is overlooked by the characters in the heat of their own passionate exchanges. Perhaps Loge himself has been the listener, watching this whole drama unfold, and recognizes, upon mention that Brünnhilde is to be held on this rock, what will soon become his duty.

    Regardless of what Loge is doing with himself, the other eight Valkyries are appalled at Wotan’s choice of punishment and clamor to convince him to be lenient, but he dismisses them with one quick command. These are what the Valkyries were meant to be: terrifying warriors who are, nonetheless, held to one god’s will, subject to his commands. Now this one god is left alone with the one daughter who defied his command to uphold his will.

    Scene iii is a tremendous musical and dramatic event, encompassing so much that it lends itself to many varied interpretations. Is the struggle between Wotan and his daughter indicative of social change by a younger generation? Is the struggle depicting a dissident faction undermining a totalitarian government? Is it illustrating a form of adolescent rebellion and maturity from a child’s parent? Is it a statement of feminist power? Or is it something more; is the ‘struggle’ not that Brünnhilde is rebelling against Wotan, but that Brünnhilde has had something awakened within her which Wotan either lacks or has tried to hide. Is it that she, through humanistic compassion, has become more than he, the omnipotent god, can ever be? Gillespie states
    “In the [folklore] sagas the heroic figures rarely show compassion,...but Wagner has imbued his characters with humane qualities without apparent incongruity. [Brünnhilde] becomes involved with humanity...her ‘awakening’ is a spiritual one, an awakening to the need for love in the ordering of the affairs of the world.” (33)

    The third scene opens with a symphonic interlude of sheer beauty, as intertwining iterations of Brünnhilde’s theme, now heard in its entirety, show more how she is on Wotan’s mind rather than to describe her physical presence. The bass clarinet and english horn play almost silently and Wotan is lost in thought. The gentle music plays on, only to culminate in an interruptive horn statement of the stark fate motive. The end time has come. (Wagner 598-9)

    The narrative is now concerned only with Wotan and Brünnhilde, and we can see the conflict and climax of their relationship. Brünnhilde gently works to calm Wotan and turn his heart; she is speaking with the utmost innocence and naïveté, there is no craft in her words, save the shining purity of the truth.  She pleads. After every brief line, delivered without orchestra, the woodwinds return, echoing the end of her theme (599/2/4, 599/3/4), as Wotan’s composite crime theme (see appendix) previously foreshadowed the beginning. (559/3/3-4) Is she talking to herself, or hoping that Wotan is listening? It makes no difference: Wotan in not moved. She finds the strength to continue her cautious rebuttal. Throughout the ensuing conversation, she keeps her dignity and offers her lines in quiet nobility, usually piano, while Wotan’s equally short lines, while no louder, are accented by rapid crescendi and sforzandi. Wotan is trying to keep his cool, but there is still a ocean of anger raging within him. And Brünnhilde must calm the sea. Brünnhilde begs Wotan to explain what has truly upset him, for she knows his admission will not only remind him of Siegmund but awaken compassion within his heart. During her plea, “O sag, Vater!/Sieh mir ins Auge;.schweige den Zorn,/zähme die Wut/und deute mir hell/die dinkle Schuld...” we hear a fragment of Wotan’s conflicted theme repeat under her words, and each time it grows longer and more ornamented, more elaborate, until it more closely resembles the love theme than that of torment. (600/2/6-601/1/2)

     The spear motive makes itself known in various guises (indicating Wotan’s resistance to her appeal), including an allusion to the storm which opened the opera (602/2/1-3), but in general the conversation seems to be taking shape until Brünnhilde mentions, “Als Fricka den eigen/Sinn dir entfremdet;/da ihrem Sinn du dich fügtest,/warst du selber dir Feind.” (603/2/5) After this line, the orchestra, which has been gently accompanying her to this point, halts. Wotan has been offended, and any ground she might have won will have to be regained.

    It seems an impossible task, but certain things must be remembered: Wotan is only angry at Brünnhilde because he loves her; she defied him to do what was right, and he knows it. Brünnhilde must simply tap into that affection to regain the relationship they had in Act II scene ii.

    And it happens. Brünnhilde does not merely say she helped Siegmund, as Wotan knows. Rather, she takes him with her on the journey where she discovered human compassion, in the hopes that it will awaken his own compassion for her. Her description of coming face to face with Siegmund is accompanied by an orchestral texture of gentle yet incessant reiterations of a thematic fragment similar to the storm, the spear, her own defense, and, prophetically, the sleep motive. (606/3/2 until 609, also see appendix) This style also recalls Wotan’s earlier soliloquy from Act II, where incessant and stretto ‘inner conflict’ motives seem to swarm around him as he explains his vain attempts to learn more of Erda’s fatal prophesy, eventually leading to his present tortured state. (245) Brünnhilde’s attempt to awaken something emotional in Wotan through her story is successful. She leads Wotan to see what he had been denying for too long; his true self. According to Lee, in the back story,

    “Wotan says he will give an eye to know the secret of the world. He will see, with the remaining eye, what he has asked to see-the world without. But he will not see the world within. He will need help to understand himself. She has said..."my eyes are yours. I only saw what you could not see.” And again we wonder: Is this daughter who knows Wotan better than he knows himself--is she the vision he sacrificed when he wrested wisdom from nature? Is she, who says she is his Wille, the eye that sees to his inner self?” (55)

    Once again we have an emotional confession from Wotan, as in Act II. “In den Trümmern der eignen Welt/meine ew’ge Trauer zu enden”,  he says (623-4), realizing now that his turning on himself (meaning both his changing of his orders and his confrontation with his other half, Brünnhilde). He knows now that the confrontation in Act II scene ii was not merely an argument with Fricka but a sign that his grip on control in the world is growing weak. He later says, “Doch fort muss ich jetzt,/fern mich verziehn;/zuviel schon zögert’ ich hier.” (Porter 106) He knows the state the world is in, if he could only set it right.

    Brünnhilde informs him that there is another Wälsung, the ‘last scion’ who will, through the help of Nothung, continue the purpose of the Wälsung race. But Wotan’s despair knows no end; he is not swayed to happiness by the news that the Wälsungs have survived. He condemns her to magic sleep, amid the sleeping theme and an enigmatic hint at Valhalla’s regal theme. She begs that some terror protect her from all but a fearless hero, because it was she all along, through her defiance, who was responsible for saving the Wälsung and ensuring a future for the world. The low strings undulate with a variant theme linked both to Brünnhilde’s and Wotan’s spear (Wagner 640/2/1-2)). As she pleads, “Die Schlafende schütze/mit scheuchendem Schrecken,/dass nur ein furchtlos/freiester Held/hier auf dem Felsen/einstmich fänd!” (641-2) we hear Siegfried’s theme, and as with Nothung’s unexplained musical appearance at the end of Das Rheingold,  we know we can trust that this music will accompany some hero to her side in the next opera. And we as listeners know exactly who that hero shall be.

    Brünnhilde boldly demands that Wotan strike her down with his spear rather than let her wait helplessly on the rock for the first man to claim her. In a fit of sudden inspiration (although Loge’s presence had been felt earlier), she suggests that fire surround the rock, magic fire through which only a man who knows no fear could pass. He finally agrees (659/2/2), and offers her a deeply heartfelt farewell. Many scholars agree on the absolute emotional purity of this moment in Wotan’s existence. Kitcher says “The extraordinarily moving outpouring of Wotan’s love for Brünnhilde, as his valediction surges from the depths of his being is made possible by the development of his judgment of what she has done, expressed in successive characterizations of what was initially viewed as betrayal.” (123) Cooke observes “The value of love is in fact what Wotan has been forced to recognize.” (352)

    When Wotan, in describing the magnificent ‘bridal fire’ he will set for his daughter, is acknowledging not only his love for her but also his realization that he must let her go, as when a father gives his daughter in marriage. The difference here of course is that her union will not take place for some time, but in putting her to sleep and bidding her farewell, Wotan is allowing Brünnhilde to awaken to her new life and fulfill her destiny. The music reflects this shift from a Wotan-centric story line to a more humanistic plot, eventually showing, through the final two operas, how Brünnhilde, although physically absent for much of Siegfried, is the main character of the overall story due to how she redeems and restores balance to the world. After Wotan acknowledges that a hero more freer than himself shall rescue Brünnhilde (Wagner 662-3), what appears to be the spear motive is heard in the woodwinds, but as we have never heard it before: piano, over a soft string tremolo (663/5). We need only to listen for one more measure to realize this is not Wotan’s motive but that of Brünnhilde’s redemptive love (see appendix); Wotan’s role in this tale is about ended; from now on it shall be Brünnhilde’s story. In fact, the only time in this opera where we shall hear Wotan’s theme presented in traditional forte fashion is when he summons Loge to protect his daughter (678/1/4-6). Soon after his own theme fades out, the iterations of Brünnhilde’s theme undergo a transformation to her sleep motive (667/4), during which Wotan looks into his daughter’s eyes, those eyes that saw what he could not, and says his final goodbye.

    The mysterious emergence of the death motive spurs on a ‘pang’ gesture in the viola (669/2/1), which is the evidence of something stirring inside Wotan, an emotional ‘choking up’, which returns and returns, and resolves to Brünnhilde’s sleep motive, which was his decision on the fate of his daughter (670/1/1, 671/1/1-2). An incredibly subtle quote of the spear motive finds its way into the fabric of the recurring sleep motive when Wotan says of Brünnhilde’s eyes, “zum letzten Mal/letz’ es mich heut’” (671/1/3, 671/2/1), and when he identifies himself as “dem unseligen Ew’gen” (672/1/3-4), and it is here that Wotan’s theme, and presence, fades away. Kitcher notes, quite accurately, “We have never heard Wotan sing anything like this before; and we never will again.” (125) Wotan has, for one moment, perhas the only moment, risen above himself to do, as Brünnhilde did, what he knows is right. He has only left to fulfill his promise to his daughter and make the strongest effort he can to set right what he allowed to go wrong with the world.

    As his farewell ends, Brünnhilde’s theme fades as well, and we hear the last two iterations, one major and one in the parallel minor, transform into the stark fate motive, underpinned by the death motive in the timpani, and the so-rarely heard curse-axiom motive, whose diatonic chorale-style makes the similarly chordal yet highly chromatic sleep motive’s appearance soon after all the more striking. (672/2/1-6, 673/2-6)

    “Denn so kehrt/der Goot sich dir ab,/so küsst er die Gottheit von dir!” Thus Wotan says his farewell, for he shall never again see his daughter (672-3). He removes her godhead with a kiss, a sign of love, and once she is held in sleep, he summons Loge to surround her. (Wagner 678) This ordering of Loge is significant; in Das Rheingold  not only did Wotan not order Loge, but actually had to wait for him to arrive. In the depths of devotion to his child and acceptance of his part in bringing balance back to the world, he asserts his power by ordering Loge--and Loge listens.

    Wotan’s eventual passionate acceptance of Brünnhilde’s proposal that fire surround her seems a rather rapid turn on his previous stance ardently forbidding such a concession. After all, this was a punishment. But the Wotan who suddenly is convinced to grant his condemned daughter her last request  is not the opportunistic Wotan who ‘magnanimously’ arranged for alternative payment for the giants in Freia’s stead in Das Rheingold. Then we had the impression that, if Freia had not been the tender of the golden apples which granted the gods immortality, Wotan may not have fought as ardently for the release of his sister in law. Here his gregarious act was, in essence, self-serving. But in Die Walküre, even if Wotan fully understood at the time that only Siegfried could free Brünnhilde, and thus in setting this fire and guarding the foot of the mountain he is insuring that success can come only to his Wälsungs, he was not driven to the idea by selfish thoughts. Whereas earlier in the opera when Wotan longed for the success of the Wälsungs because they would lead to Alberich’s defeat and a victory for himself, now he realizes, in the final minutes before the curtain falls, that it is no longer a question of victory or defeat; in a sense he has already lost, and through his defeat, will gain the ultimate victory. Wotan, in setting the rock ablaze, realizes he is doing the best, the most noble and potent thing in his power to bring balance back to the earth, even if it means his own demise.

    In the magic fire music, Wagner “solved the problem of how to express deep emotion in a style of calm sublimity” (Porges 77). The symphonic ending of Die Walküre is matched only by the magnificent spectacle at the close of Götterdämmerung; simultaneously we hear Brünnhilde’s sleep, Loge’s protective fire, and Siegfried’s prophetic theme, intertwining to create the dream not only of the sleeping Brünnhilde, but of the oppressed and broken world. It at once cries out to redemption, Come quickly!, and also asserts that the redeeming has already taken place. Wotan has won, through a selfless act, in essence a self-destructive act, which protected the future of one whom he loved. Wotan has embodied selflessness, compassion, love, generosity...Wotan has put on humanity. Now it is left to him to wait, to watch and to hope his actions have made a difference. From this point on in the cycle the focus shifts completely to human relationships, to love, betrayal, promises and bonds among humans, and though the attention moves from the heavens down to earth, what is attained by the mortals is a victory far greater than anything their gods could have accomplished alone. Brünnhilde’s transformation to mortal woman bridges these two worlds and unites them. Wotan’s sacrifice and his final acceptance of compassion and love bring him that much closer to humanity, whose gifts alone raise mortals to the divine.

Works Cited/Bibliography

Byock, Jesse (trans). Saga of the Volsungs: The Norse Epic of Sigurd the Dragon Slayer. Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1990.

Cooke, Deryck. I Saw the World End. A Study of Wagner’s Ring. New York: Oxford University Press, 1979.

Corse, Sandra. Wagner and the New Consciousnesss: Language and Love in the Ring. New Jersey: Farleigh Dickenson University Press, 1990.

Dorrington, Robert. Wagner’s ‘Ring’ and its Symbols. Boston: Faber & Faber, 1963.

Gillespie, George. “New Myths for Old.” Die Walküre (English National Opera Guide 21). ed. Nicolas John. New York: Calder Publications Limited, 1983. pp32-3.

Kitcher, Philip; and Richard Schacht.  Finding an Ending: Reflections on Wagner’s Ring. New York: Oxford University Press, 2004.

Lee, M. Owen. Wagner’s Ring: Turning the Sky Round. New York: Simon & Schuster, 1990.    

Millington, Barry. “An Introduction to the Music of ‘The Valkyrie.” Die Walküre (English National Opera Guide 21). ed. Nicolas John. New York: Calder Publications Limited, 1983. pp24-6.

Porges, Heinrich. Wagner Rehearsing the ‘Ring’, an Eyewitness Account of the Stage Rehearsals of the First Bayreuth Festival. trans. Robert L. Jacobs. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1983.

Porter, Andrew, tr. “The Ring of the Nibelung.” Die Walküre (English National Opera Guide 21). ed. Nicolas John. New York: WW Norton and Company Inc, 1976. pp100-108.

Shaw, George Bernard. The Perfect Wagnerite. New York: Dover Publications, 1967.

Wagner, Richard. Die Walküre. New York: Dover Publications, 1978.

Weinstock, John.  Der Ring des Nibelungen. 2004.     University of Texas. 15 November 2005         <>.
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