Joseph Mohr

Joseph Mohr
Short Name: Joseph Mohr
Full Name: Mohr, Joseph, 1792-1848
Birth Year: 1792
Death Year: 1848

Joseph Mohr was born into a humble family–his mother was a seamstress and his father, an army musketeer. A choirboy in Salzburg Cathedral as a youth, Mohr studied at Salzburg University and was ordained in the Roman Catholic Church in 1815. Mohr was a priest in various churches near Salzburg, including St. Nicholas Church. He spent his later years in Hintersee and Wagrein.

Bert Polman

Mohr, Joseph, was born at Salzburg, Austria, on Dec. 11, 1792. After being ordained priest on Aug. 21, 1815, by the Roman Catholic Bishop of Salzburg, he was successively assistant at Ramsau and at Laufen; then coadjutor at Kuchl, at Golling, at Vigaun, at Adnet, and at Authering; then Vicar-Substitute at Hof and at Hintersee--all in the diocese of Salzburg. In 1828 he was appointed Vicar at Hintersee, and in 1837 at Wagrein, near St. Johann. He died at Wagrein, Dec. 4, 1848. The only hymn by him translated into English is:—
Stille Nacht! heilige Nacht! Christmas. This pretty little carol was written for Christmas, 1818, while Mohr was assistant clergyman at Laufen, on the Salza, near Salzburg, and was set to music (as in the Garland of Songs) by Franz Gruber, then schoolmaster at the neighbouring village of Arnsdorf (b. Nov. 25, 1787, at Hochburg near Linz, died June 7, 1863, as organist at Hallein, near Salzburg). What is apparently the original form is given by 0. Kraus, 1879, p. 608, in 3 stanzas of 6 lines, and in Dr. Wichern's Unsere Lieder, Hamburg, 1844, No. 111. Another form, also in 3 stanzas of 6 lines, is in T. Fliedner's Lieder-Buch für Kleinkinder-Schulen, Kaiserswerth, 1842, No. 115, and the Evangelical Kinder Gesang-Buch, Basel, 1867. The translations are from the text of 1844.
1. Holy night! peaceful night! All is dark. By Miss J. M. Campbell in C. S. Bere's Garland of Songs, 1863, and thence in Hymns & Carols, London, 1871.
2. Silent night! hallowed night. Land and deep. This is No. 131 in the Christian Hymn Book, Cincinnati, 1865. It is suggested by, rather than a translation of the German.
3. Holy night! peaceful night! Through the darkness. This is No. 8 in J. Barnby's Original Tunes to Popular Hymns, Novello, N. D., 1869; repeated in Laudes Domini, N.Y., 1884, No. 340.
4. Silent night! holy night! All is calm. This is in C. L. Hutchins's Sunday School Hymnal, 1871 (1878, p. 198), and the Sunday School Hymn Book of the Gen. Council of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, 1873, No. 65.
5. Peaceful night, all things sleep. This is No. 17, in Carols for St Stephen's Church, Kirkstall, Leeds, 1872.
6. Silent night, holiest night. All asleep. By Dr. A. Edersheim, in the Sunday at Home, Dec. 18, 1875, repeated in the Church Sunday School Hymn Book, 1879, No. 35.
7. Silent night! holy night! Slumber reigns. By W. T. Matson, as No. 132, in Dr. Allon's Children's Worship, 1878.
8. Still the night, holy the night! Sleeps the world. By Stopford A. Brooke, in his Christian Hymns, 1881, No. 55.
Translations not in common use:--

(1) "Stilly night, Holy night, Silent stars," by Miss E. E. S. Elliott, privately printed for the choir of St. Mark's, Brighton, about 1858, but first published in the Church Missionary Juvenile Instructor, 1871, p. 198. Also in her Tune Book for Under the Pillow, 1880. (2) "Holy night! calmly bright," by Mary D. Moultrie in Hymns & Lyrics by Gerard Moultrie, 1867, p. 42. (3) "Silent night, holiest night! Moonbeams," by C. T. Brooks, In his Poems, Boston, U. S., 1885, p. 218.

[Rev. James Mearns, M.A.]

--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)


Mohr, Joseph, p. 760, ii. The translation "Stilly night, starry and bright," in Farmer's Glees & Songs for High Schools, 1881, p. 36, is by Archdeacon Farrar.

--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology, Appendix, Part II (1907)

See also in:

Texts by Joseph Mohr (39)sort descendingAsAuthority LanguagesInstances
عيد الليل زهر الليلJosef Mohr (Author)Arabic2
ليلة ليلة يا لها بهجةJoseph Mohr (Author)Arabic1
Լուռ գիշեր սուրբ գիշերJoseph Mohr (Author)Armenian2
平安夜, 圣善夜Josef Mohr (Author)Chinese2
Тихая ночь, дивная ночь!Joseph Mohr (Йосеф Мор), (Author)Russian2
Тиха нощ! Свята нощ!Joseph Mohr (Author)Bulgarian2
Alina masinaJ. Mohr (Author)Malagasy2
Belle nuit, sainte nuitJ. Mohr (Author)French2
Cusisiña suma jayp’uJoseph Mohr (Author)Aymara2
Glade jul, dejlige julJosef Mohr (Author)Danish2
Hanhepi wakan kin!Joseph Mohr (Author)Dakota1
Holy night, peaceful nightJ. Mohr (Author)English115
Holy Spirit, hear us, On this sacred dayJoseph Mohr (Author)English28
Đêm thánh vô cùng Giây, phút tưng bừng (Silent night! Holy night!)Joseph Mohr (Author)English, Vietnamese2
Malam kudus, sunyi senyapJosef Mohr (Author)Indonesian2
Mihainoa! Mihainoa!J. Mohr (Author)Malagasy1
Nasantoan a rabiiJoseph Mohr (Author)Tagalog2
Noche de paz, noche de amorJoseph Mohr (austríaco, 1792-1848) (Author)Spanish12
Noite de paz! Noite de amor!Joseph Mohr (Author)Portuguese2
Nuit pèzib, nuit se santJosef Mohr (Author)Haitian Creole2
Pavetaa'evȧ nėhe'xovevaJoseph Mohr (Based on)Cheyenne2
Pola'i e, ihiihi eRev. Joseph Mohr (Author)Hawaiian2
Polai e, Pokamaha'oJoseph Mohr (Author)Hawaiian2
Silent night, hallowed night, land and deep silent sleepJoseph Mohr (Author)1
Silent night, holy night, All is dark, save the lightJoseph Mohr (Author)English62
Silent night, holy night, golden starsJoseph Mohr (Author)2
Still the night, holy the nightJoseph Mohr, 1792-1848 (Author)English9
Silent night, holy night, All is calm, all is brightJoseph Mohr (Author)English521
Silent night, holy night, all is held in slumber's mightJoseph Mohr (Author)English2
Silent night, Holy night, David's son, Lord of lightJoseph Mohr (1792-1848) (Author)2
Silent night! Holy night! Heaven is near, earth is brightJoseph Mohr (Author)Englsih2
Silent night, holy night, see the starJoseph Mohr (Author)3
Silent night! Holy night! Slumber reigns! Naught in sightRev. Joseph Mohr, 1792-1848 (Author)4
Silent night, peaceful night! All things sleep, shepherds keepJoseph Mohr (Author)19
Silent night, peaceful night, through the darkness beams a lightJoseph Mohr (Author)English4
Silent night, sacred night, Bethlehem sleeps yet what lightJoseph Mohr (Author)English16
Stille Nacht, heilige Nacht, Alles schlaft, einsam wachtJoseph Mohr (Author)German61
Stille nag heilige nagJosef Mohr (Author)Afrikaans2
Tawel nos dros y byd,Josef Mohr (Author)Welsh2

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