1650 - 1680Scripture: Jeremiah 7:1-8Author of "All my hope on God is founded" in Singing the FaithNeander, Joachim, was born at Bremen, in 1650, as the eldest child of the marriage of Johann Joachim Neander and Catharina Knipping, which took place on Sept. 18, 1649, the father being then master of the Third Form in the Paedagogium at Bremen. The family name was originally Neumann (Newman) or Niemann, but the grandfather of the poet had assumed the Greek form of the name, i.e. Neander. After passing through the Paedagogium he entered himself as a student at the Gymnasium illustre (Academic Gymnasium) of Bremen in Oct. 1666. German student life in the 17th century was anything but refined, and Neander seems to have been as riotous and as fond of questionable pleasures as most of his fellows. In July 1670, Theodore Under-Eyck came to Bremen as pastor of St. Martin's Church, with the reputation of a Pietist and holder of conventicles. Not long after Neander, with two like-minded comrades, went to service there one Sunday, in order to criticise and find matter of amusement. But the earnest words of Under-Eyck touched his heart; and this, with his subsequent conversations with Under-Eyck, proved the turning-point of his spiritual life. In the spring of 1671 he became tutor to five young men, mostly, if not all, sons of wealthy merchants at Frankfurt-am-Main, and accompanied them to the University of Heidelberg, where they seem to have remained till the autumn of 1673, and where Neander learned to know and love the beauties of Nature. The winter of 1673-74 he spent at Frankfurt with the friends of his pupils, and here he became acquainted with P. J. Spener (q.v.) and J. J. Schütz (q.v.) In the spring of 1674 he was appointed Rector of the Latin school at Düsseldorf (see further below). Finally, in 1679, he was invited to Bremen as unordained assistant to Under-Eyck at St. Martin's Church, and began his duties about the middle of July. The post was not inviting, and was regarded merely as a stepping stone to further preferment, the remuneration being a free house and 40 thalers a year, and the Sunday duty being a service with sermon at the extraordinary hour of 5 a.m. Had he lived, Under-Eyck would doubtless have done his best to get him appointed to St. Stephen's Church, the pastorate of which became vacant in Sept., 1680. But meantime Neander himself fell into a decline, and died at Bremen May 31, 1680 (Joachim Neander, sein Leben und seine Lieder. With a Portrait. By J. F. Iken, Bremen, 1880; Allgemeine Deutsche Biographie, xxiii. 327, &c.)
Neander was the first important hymn-writer of the German Reformed Church since the written mostly at Düsseldorf, after his lips had been sealed to any but official work. The true history of his unfortunate conflict has now been established from the original documents, and may be summarized thus.
The school at Düsseldorf was entirely under the control of the minister and elders of the Reformed Church there. The minister from about July, 1673, to about May, 1677, was Sylvester Lürsen (a native of Bremen, and only a few years older than Neander), a man of ability and earnestness, but jealous, and, in later times at least, quarrelsome. With him Neander at first worked harmoniously, frequently preaching in the church, assisting in the visitation of the sick, &c. But he soon introduced practices which inevitably brought on a conflict. He began to hold prayer meetings of his own, without informing or consulting minister or elders; he began to absent himself from Holy Communion, on the ground that he could not conscientiously communicate along with the unconverted, and also persuaded others to follow this example; and became less regular in his attendance at the ordinary services of the Church. Besides these causes of offence he drew out a new timetable for the school, made alterations on the school buildings, held examinations and appointed holidays without consulting any one. The result of all this was a Visitation of the school on Nov. 29, 1676, and then his suspension from school and pulpit on Feb. 3, 1677. On Feb. 17 he signed a full and definite declaration by which "without mental reservations" he bound himself not to repeat any of the acts complained of; and thereupon was permitted to resume his duties as rector but not as assistant minister. The suspension thus lasted only 14 days, and his salary was never actually stopped. The statements that he was banished from Düsseldorf, and that he lived for months in a cave in the Neanderthal near Mettmann are therefore without foundation. Still his having had to sign such a document was a humiliation which he must have felt keenly, and when, after Lürsen's departure, the second master of the Latin school was appointed permanent assistant pastor, this feeling would be renewed.
Neander thus thrown back on himself, found consolation in communion with God and Nature, and in the composition of his hymns. Many were without doubt inspired by the scenery of the Neanderthal (a lovely valley with high rocky sides, between which flows the little river Düssel); and the tradition is probable enough that some of them were composed in a cave there. A number were circulated among his friends at Düsseldorf in MS., but they were first collected and published after his removal to Bremen, and appeared as:—
A und Ώ, Joachimi Neandri Glaub-und Liebesübung: — auffgemuntert durch ein fällige Bundes Lieder und Danck-Psalmen, Bremen, Hermann Brauer, 1680; 2nd ed. Bremen, 1683 ; 3rd ed. Bremen, 1687; 4th ed. Frankfurt, 1689. These editions contain 57 hymns. In the 5th ed., Frankfurt and Leipzig, 1691, edited by G. C. Strattner, eight hymns were added as being also by Neander. [The whole of these eds. are in the Royal Library, Berlin. The so-called 3rd. ed. at Wesel, 1686, also found in Berlin, was evidently pirated.] Other editions rapidly followed till we find the complete set (i.e. 57 or 58) formally incorporated as part of a hymnbook, e.g. in the Marburg Reformed Gesang-Buch, 1722, where the first part consists of Lobwasser's Psalter, the second of Neander's Bundeslieder, and the third of other hymns. Neander's Bundeslieder also form a division of the Lemgo Reformed Gesang-Buch, 1722; and of a favourite book used in the meetings conducted by G. Tersteegen, which in the 5th ed., Solingen, 1760, has the title Gott-geheiligtes Harfen-Spiel der Kinder Zion; bestehend in Joachimi Neandri sämtlichen Bundes-Liedern, &c. In this way, especially in the district near Düsseldorf and on the Ruhr, Neander's name was honoured and beloved long after it had passed out of memory at Bremen.
Many of Neander's hymns were speedily received into the Lutheran hymnbooks, and are still in universal use. The finest are the jubilant hymns of Praise and Thanksgiving, such as his "Lobe den Herren”, and those setting forth the Majesty of God in His works of beauty and wonder in Nature, such as his "Himmel, Erde", and "Unbegreiflich Gut"; while some of his hymns of Penitence, such as his "Sieh hier bin ich, Ehrenkönig" (q.v.), are also very beautiful. Many are of a decidedly subjective cast, but for this the circumstances of their origin, and the fact that the author did not expect them to be used in public worship, will sufficiently account. Here and there there are doubtless harshnesses, and occasionally imagery which is rather jarring; and naturally enough the characteristic expressions and points of view of German 17th cent. Pietism and of the "Covenant Theology" are easily enough detected. But the glow and sweetness of his better hymns, their firm faith, originality, Scripturalness, variety and mastery of rhythmical forms, and genuine lyric character fully entitled them to the high place they hold.
Of the melodies in the original edition of 1680 there are 19 by Neander himself, the best known being those to Nos. viii. and xi. below.
The hymns by Neander which have passed into English, and have not already been referred to, are:—
Hymns in English common use:
i. Meine Hoffnung stehet feste. Thanksgiving. Founded on 1 Tim. vi. 17. 1680 as above, p. 115, in 5 stanzas of 7 lines, entitled "Grace after meat." In the Unverfälschter Liedersegen, 1851, No. 712. Translated as:—
All my hope is grounded surely. A full and good translation by Miss Winkworth, as No. 8 in her Chorale Book for England, 1863.
Another translation is: "All my Hope is fix'd and grounded." By J. C. Jacobi, 1720, p. 17, repeated in his ed., 1732, p. 64, altered and beginning, "All my Hope is firmly grounded."
ii. Unbegreiflich Gut, wahrer Gott alleine. Summer. According to tradition this was written in the summer of 1677, in a cave in the Neanderthal near Düsseldorf, while Neander was in enforced absence from his school duties (Koch, vi. 20). It is founded on Ps. civ. 24. 1680, p. 165, in 12 stanzas of 6 lines, and entitled, "The Joys of Summer and Autumn in Field and Forest." The following note shows that the "Feeling for Nature" is not entirely modern.
“It is also a travelling hymn in summer or autumn for those who, on their way to Frankfurt on the Main, go up and down the river Rhine, where between Cologne and Mainz, mountains, cliffs, brooks and rocks are to be beheld with particular wonder; also in the district of Berg in the rocky region [the ‘Gestein' now called the Neanderthal], not far from Düsseldorf."
The hymn is in Knapp's Evangelischer Lieder-Schatz 1850, No. 2163 (1865, No. 2231), omitting st. x. Translated as:-—
0 Thou true God alone. A very good translation, omitting st. x., by Miss Winkworth, in her Christian Singers, 1869, p. 286. Her translation of st. i., iii.-v. altered in metre, and beginning "Thou true God alone," are No. 53 in M. W. Stryker's Christian Chorals, 1885.
Hymns not in English common use:——
iii. Auf, auf, mein Geist, erhebe dich zum Himmel. Holy Communion. Founded on Ps. xxiii. 6. 1860, as above, p. 27, in 5 stanzas, entitled, "The soul strengthened and refreshed. After the reception of the Holy Communion." In Porst's Gesang-Buch, ed. 1855, No. 218. In the Moravian London Gesang-Buch, 1753, No. 697, it begins, "Den Himmels-Vorschmack hab' ich auf der Erde," and in the Brüder Gesang-Buch, 1778, No. 1178, it was further recast (by C. Gregor?) and altered to "hab'ich schon hinieden." Translated as "Heav'n's foretaste I may here already have." By F W. Foster & J. Miller, as No. 596, in the Moravian Hymn Book, 1789. In the 1801 ed. (1849, No. 1003) it begins, “Since Jesus dy'd, my guilty soul to save."
iv. Der Tag ist hin, mein Jesu, bei mir bleibe. Evening. Founded on St. Luke xxiv. 29. 1680, p. 15, in 6 stanzas entitled, "The Christian returning thanks at eventide." In the Unverfälschter Liedersegen, 1851, No. 512. The translations are: (1) "The Day is gone, come Jesu my Protector." In the Supplement to German Psalmody, ed. 1765, p. 72. (2) "The day is past, Thou Saviour dear, still dwell my breast within." By H. J. Buckoll, 1842, p. 82. (3) "The day is gone, abide with me tonight." By E. Massie, 1867, p. 192. (4) "The day is gone, abide with me, 0 Jesus." By R. Massie, in the Day of Rest, 1877.
v. Grosser Prophete, mein Herze begehret. Love to Christ. Founded on 1 Cor. xvi. 22. 1680, p. 191, in 4 stanzas. Translated as “Heavenly Prophet, my Heart is desiring." By J. C. Jacobi, 1720, p. 40.
vi. Jehovah ist mein Licht und Gnadensonne. God's Perfections. Founded on 1 John i. 7. 1680, p. 19 in 4 stanzas, entitled, "Walking in the Light." Translated as, "Jehovah is my light, salvation showing." By Dr. H. Mills, 1845 (1856, p. 6).
vii. 0 allerhöchster Menschenhüter. Morning. A hymn of praise to our Almighty Preserver. 1680, p. 11, in 6 stanzas, founded on Ps. lix. 16; and entitled, "The Christian singing at Morning." Translated as, "O Thou Most Highest! Guardian of mankind." By Miss Winkworth, 1858, p. 72.
viii. Unser Herrscher, unser König. Thanksgiving. Founded on Acts
viii. 2. 1680, p. 147, in 6 stanzas, entitled, "The glorious Jehovah." In the Unverfälschter Liedersegen 1851, No. 344. The well-known melody (in the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge Church Hymns called Munich) is also by Neander, and appeared along with the hymn. Translated as, "Sovereign Ruler, King victorious," in the British Herald, Dec, 1865, p. 185, and Reid's Praise Book, 1872.
ix. Wie fleucht dahin der Menschenzeit. For the Dying. A powerful hymn on the vanity of the earthly, founded on Ps. xc. 12. 1680, p. 174, in 7 stanzas, entitled, "He that counts his days." In the Unverfälschter Liedersegen, 1851, No. 845. The translations are: (1) "This life is like a flying dream" (beginning with st. ii. "Das Leben ist gleich wie ein Traum"). By Mrs. Findlater, in Hymns from the Land of Luther, 1858, p. 24 (1884, p. 146). (2) "Though hastening onward to the grave." By E. Massie, 1867, p. 36.
x. Wo soil ich hin? wer helfet mir? Lent. Founded on Romans vii. 24. 1680, p. 51, in 5 st. entitled “The distressed one longing for Redemption." In the Unverfälschter Liedersegen, 1851, No. 393. The translations are: (1) "For help, O whither shall I flee." By Dr. H. Mills, 1845 (1856, p. 146). (2) "How shall I get there? who will aid?" By Miss Warner, 1858, p. 52.
xi. Wunderbarer König. Thanksgiving. Founded on Ps. cl. 6. 1680, p. 159, in 4 stanzas, entitled, "Inciting oneself to the Praise of God." In the Unverfälschter Liedersegen, 1851, No. 787. The melody, a very fine one (called by Mr. Mercer Groningen), is also by Neander, and appeared along with the hymn. The translations are: (1) "Wonderful Creator." By J. C. Jacobi, 1722, p. 88. (2) "Wonderful and blessed." By J. D. Burns in his Memoir and Remains, 1869, p. 230. (3) "Wondrous King Almighty." By N. L. Frothingham, 1870, p. 266. [Rev. James Mearns, M.A.]
--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)
1571 - 1621Scripture: Jeremiah 7:23Adapter of "PUER NOBIS" in Lift Up Your HeartsMichael Praetorius (probably February 15, 1571 – February 15, 1621) was a German composer, organist, and music theorist. He was one of the most versatile composers of his age, being particularly significant in the development of musical forms based on Protestant hymns, many of which reflect an effort to improve the relationship between Protestants and Catholics.
He was born Michael Schultze, the youngest son of a Lutheran pastor, in Creuzburg, in present-day Thuringia. After attending school in Torgau and Zerbst, he studied divinity and philosophy at the University of Frankfurt (Oder). After receiving his musical education, from 1587 he served as organist at the Marienkirche in Frankfurt. From 1592/3 he served at the court in Wolfenbüttel, under the employ of Henry Julius, Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg. He served in the duke's State Orchestra, first as organist and later (from 1604) as Kapellmeister.
His first compositions appeared around 1602/3. Praetorius had begun writing some of them when Regensburg was the parliamentary seat of the Holy Roman Empire. Their publication primarily reflects the care for music at the court of Gröningen. The motets of this collection were the first in Germany to make use of the new Italian performance practices; as a result, they established him as a proficient composer.
These "modern" pieces mark the end of his middle creative period. The nine parts of his Musae Sioniae (1605–10) and the 1611 published collections of liturgical music (masses, hymns, magnificats) follow the German Protestant chorale style. With these, at the behest of a circle of orthodox Lutherans, he followed the Duchess Elizabeth, who ruled the duchy in the duke's absence. In place of popular music, one now expected religious music from Praetorius.
When the duke died in 1613 and was succeeded by Frederick Ulrich, Praetorius retained his employment. From 1613 he also worked at the court of John George I, Elector of Saxony at Dresden, where he was responsible for festive music. He was exposed to the latest Italian music, including the polychoral works of the Venetian School. His subsequent development of the form of the chorale concerto, particularly the polychoral variety, resulted directly from his familiarity with the music of such Venetians as Giovanni Gabrieli. The solo-voice, polychoral, and instrumental compositions Praetorius prepared for these events mark the high period of his artistic creativity. Until his death, Praetorius stayed at the court in Dresden, where he was declared Kapellmeister von Haus aus and worked with Heinrich Schütz.
Michael Praetorius died on his 50th birthday, in Wolfenbüttel, Germany and is entombed in a vault beneath the organ of St. Mary's Church there.
His family name in German appears in various forms including Schultze, Schulte, Schultheiss, Schulz and Schulteis. Praetorius was the conventional Latinized form of this family name.
Praetorius was a prolific composer; his compositions show the influence of Italian composers and his younger contemporary Heinrich Schütz. His works include the nine volume Musae Sioniae (1605–10), a collection of more than twelve hundred (ca. 1244) chorale and song arrangements; many other works for the Lutheran church; and Terpsichore (1612), a compendium of more than 300 instrumental dances, which is both his most widely known work, and his sole surviving secular work.
The familiar harmonization of "Es ist ein Ros entsprungen" (Lo, How a Rose E'er Blooming) was written by Praetorius in 1609.
Praetorius was the greatest musical academic of his day and the Germanic writer of music best known to other 17th-century musicians. Although his original theoretical contributions were relatively few, with nowhere near the long-range impact of other 17th-century German writers, like Johannes Lippius, Christoph Bernhard or Joachim Burmeister, he compiled an encyclopedic record of contemporary musical practices. While Praetorius made some refinements to figured-bass practice and to tuning practice, his importance to scholars of the 17th century derives from his discussions of the normal use of instruments and voices in ensembles, the standard pitch of the time, and the state of modal, metrical, and fugal theory. His meticulous documentation of 17th-century practice was of inestimable value to the early-music revival of the 20th century.
His expansive but incomplete treatise, Syntagma Musicum, appeared in three volumes (with appendix) between 1614 and 1620. The first volume (1614), titled Musicae Artis Analecta, was written mostly in Latin, and regarded the music of the ancients and of the church. The second (De Organographia, 1618) regarded the musical instruments of the day, especially the organ; it was one of the first theoretical treatises written in the vernacular. The third (Termini Musicali, 1618), also in German, regarded the genres of composition and the technical essentials for professional musicians. An appendix to the second volume (Theatrum Instrumentorum seu Sciagraphia, 1620) consisted of 42 beautifully drawn woodcuts, depicting instruments of the early 17th century, all grouped in families and shown to scale. A fourth volume on composition was planned, with the help of Baryphonus, but was left incomplete at his death.
Praetorius wrote in a florid style, replete with long asides, polemics, and word-puzzles – all typical of 17th-century scholarly prose. As a lifelong committed Christian, he often regretted not taking holy orders but did write several theological tracts, which are now lost. As a Lutheran from a militantly Protestant family, he contributed greatly to the development of the vernacular liturgy, but also favored Italian compositional methods, performance practice and figured-bass notation.
Praetorius' most recognizable piece from Terpsichore, "La Bouree," became part of current popular culture in several ways, including as part of the song, "Ding-Dong! The Witch is Dead" by The Fifth Estate, first appearing on their album "The Rub-a-Dub," released in 1967 by Jubilee Records. "La Bouree" was also played as the 7 AM time signal every weekday morning throughout the 1980s on WCPN, Cleveland's NPR radio station. Several of his works have been used in the soundtrack of the popular Sid Meier game Civilization IV.