All my heart this night rejoices

All my heart this night rejoices. Paul Gerhardt* (1607-1676), translated by Catherine Winkworth* (1827-1878). Gerhardt’s hymn, beginning ‘Fröhlich soll mein Herze springen’*, was first published in Johann Crüger*’s Praxis Pietatis Melica (1653). It had 15 stanzas of eight lines each, portraying the Christ child as the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world, and who is worshipped by the shepherds and the Wise Men. Winkworth translated 10 stanzas, omitting stanzas 3-5, 13 and 14, for Lyra Germanica II (1858), where it was headed ‘Christmas. A Song of Joy at Dawn’. For Gerhardt’s full text see EG 36 and the missing stanzas in the German hymn entry, as above. Winkworth shortened the...

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