“Death of Adam” Klopstock in brief

The valley surrounded by mountains, in it huts and altar of Abel. Adam prays at the altar, and his son, Seth, and one of the great-granddaughters, Zelima, speak to each other. Zelima is happy – after all, today Adam must “bring her into the marriage room”, she goes beyond the wise Heman, whom she herself chose as her husband. But Seth can not rejoice with her, because he has seen recently that his father, Adam, is sad that his face is covered with deathly pallor, and “his feet hardly cross.”

Adam exclaims: “A gloomy day, awful.” He sends Zelima to his mother and, left alone with Seth, says that he had a vision. The Angel of Death and the rivers appeared to him that Adam would soon see him again. The thought of a near death, that he must die, and all his children-the whole human race-are also mortal, tormenting Adam, filling his soul with unbearable horror and anguish. After all, he was created for immortality, and mortality is a punishment

for the great sin that he committed, disobeying the Lord, and the guilt for that sin lies on all his descendants. He asks Seth to beg for the Creator even one more day of life, but darkness descends to the valley, the Angel of Death appears and announces to Adam that, at the command of the Almighty, he will die “before sunset,” the moment the Angel ascends to the rock and overthrows it. Adam humbly accepts this message, but his soul is full of sorrow. He does not want his wife, Eve, and the descendants to see him dying. Zelima returns. She is in turmoil, because an unfamiliar person, “formidable, ferocious, with fast eyes and pale face,” is looking for Adam. She sees a grave opened near the altar, learns that Adam is preparing for death, and he pleads not to die. At this time Cain appears, who accuses Adam of all his misfortunes, and when he asks him to be silent, to regret even the young Zelima, “this innocence is crying,” says bitterly: “But where does innocence exist, since the children of Adam were born? ” He wants to take revenge on his father for killing his brother,
Abel, because he can not find peace anywhere. He conceived a terrible vengeance-to curse his father on the day of his death. Adam conjures him not to do this for the sake of salvation, which is still possible for Cain, but he in a frenzy exclaims in front of the altar of his brother: “Let your curse begin on the day of your death, that your kindred may be destroyed!” But suddenly he – like a man who has lost his madness – is horrified at what he does. Cain seems to have shed the blood of his father, and he rushes away, full of despair. The wine of Cain is great before the father, and the sin is sinful, perfect for them, but Adam sends Seth to him and tells him to ease his torment and tell him that he forgives him. Cain in an ecstatic impulse appeals to the Lord and asks to forgive Adam, as he forgave his sinful son. Exhausted by suffering, Adam falls asleep at the tomb. Appears Eve. She is full of happiness because she found her youngest son, Zunia, who recently lost his way. When Seth informs her that Adam must die, she rushes to her husband in immeasurable sadness and begs him to take her with him. Waking up, Adam comforts her with words full of infinite love. At this time young mothers come, whose children should be blessed by the forefather, and Zuniy. Adam, whose eyes have already covered the death veil, hears the younger son’s voice among the voices of the weeping relatives, but in this world Adam can no longer be joyful. Seth watches in horror that the tops of the cedars are already closing the sun, and asks Adam to bless them all. But Adam replies that he can not do it, for there is a curse on it. The fear of death, the thought that he brought a curse upon his children and thereby condemned them to suffering, torment him even more. “Where will I be?” he asks desperately. The veil from Adam’s eyes falls, he sees the faces of his relatives and the “deplorable dwelling of death” – a ready tomb. But suddenly, when the horror of the dying man reaches its climax, appeasement condescends upon him, as if someone sends him good news, and all with amazement and great joy see how his face lights up with an angelic smile. The fear of death leaves Adam, for he now knows that God forgave him and that after death comes salvation and eternal life.

Adam beckons to his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Together with Eve, who will soon unite with Adam in another life, he blesses his descendants and informs them that he is forgiven, and together with him the whole human race is forgiven. “You will die, but you will die for immortality,” he instructs his children. He punishes them to be wise, noble, to love one another and to thank those who created them in the hour of life and the hour of death.

The noise is heard in the distance, the rocks are overthrown.

Adam dies with the words: “Great Judge, I am coming to You!”

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“Death of Adam” Klopstock in brief