“In dulci jubilo” 2

A German Christmas Carol in German and English

This is the German Protestant version of “In dulci jubilo.” Also see the Catholic version. The 1533 Lutheran hymnal, Geistliche Lieder, included it with three verses. It also appeared in another Lutheran hymnal published in Leipzig in 1537. In 1545, another verse was added that may have been written by Martin Luther. Unlike the Catholic version, there are no Latin phrases, although the meaning is retained. The old Roman Catholic melody was retained for the Protestant service by Luther.

Also see the Traditional English lyrics (“Good Christian Men, Rejoice”) of this carol.

Learn more about “In dulci jubilo” below.

Evangelische deutsche
Textfassung (Hannover, 1646)
Protestant German from 1646
Literal English translation by H. Flippo
Nun singet und seid froh,
jauchzt alle und sagt so:
Unsers Herzens Wonne
liegt in der Krippen bloß
und leucht’ doch als die Sonne
in seiner Mutter Schoß.
Du bist A und O.
Now sing and rejoice,
praise all and say thus:
Our heart’s bliss
lies bare in a manger
and yet shines like the sun
in his mother’s lap.
Thou art beginning and end.
Sohn Gottes in der Höh’,
nach dir ist mir so weh.
Tröst mir mein Gemüte,
O Kindlein zart und rein,
durch alle deine Güte,
O liebstes Jesulein.
Zeuch mich hin nach dir.
Son of God on high,
my heart aches for Thee.
Console me in my heart and soul,
O little child tender and pure,
through all your good,
O dearest little Jesus.
Draw me to you.
Groß ist des Vaters Huld;
der Sohn tilgt unsre Schuld.
Wir war’n all’ verdorben
durch Sünd’ und Eitelkeit;
so hat er uns erworben
die ewig’ Himmelsfreud’.
Eia, wär’n wir da!
Great is the Father’s grace;
his Son rids us of sin.
We were all stained
by sin and vanity;
so he gained for us
eternal heavenly joy.
Oh, were we only there!
Wo ist der Freudenort?
Nirgends mehr denn dort,
da die Engel singen
mit den Heil’gen all’
und die Psalmen klingen
im hohen Himmelssaal.
Eia, wär’n wir da!
Where is the joyful place?
Nowhere more than there
where angels sing
with all of the saints
and the psalms sound
in the high heavenly hall.
Oh, were we only there!
MORE > Traditional English lyrics (Good Christian Men, Rejoice)
BACK > German Christmas Carol Lyrics

About This Carol


A FRESH AIRE CHRISTMAS: This Mannheim Steamroller CD album features “In dulci jubilo” and several other German carols.

Buy this CD album from Amazon.com.
Buy the MP3 version of this album from Amazon.com.

This traditional carol in Latin and German dates from at least the 14th century. The words may have been written by the German Dominican monk and mystic Heinrich Seuse (1295-1366, known as Henry Soso in English), but that is not an established fact. It is known that Heinrich mentioned this song in his autobiography (Vita/Leben Seuse), the first ever written in German.

“In dulci jubilo” is a so-called “macaronic” song, one which combines Latin and a vernacular language such as German or English. Today in German there is a Catholic version (with a mixture of Latin and German) and a Protestant version (above, without any Latin). There are also several different English translations. The most common English version of “In dulci jubilo” is “Good Christian Men, Rejoice” with words by the English clergyman John Mason Neale (1818-1866).

Over time, various musical arrangements and melodies have been created for “In dulci jubilo” by several composers, including Johann Sebastian Bach. Other musical settings were written in 1607 by Michael Praetorius (1571-1621) and in the 1860s by Sir John Stainer (Christmas Carols New and Old).

The Mannheim Steamroller CD A Fresh Aire Christmas features “In dulci jublio” and several other German carols.

Next | German Christmas Carol Lyrics in German and English


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