The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

All Praise to Thee, Eternal God

Compare: All Praise To Thee Eternal Lord

Words: Stanza 1 based on Latin sequence (Grates nunc omnes reddamus), 11th century; Stanzas 2-5: Martin Luther (1483-1546), (Gelobet seist du), 1524;
Translated by: unknown, 1858;
Text: John 1:14

Tune: Gelobet seist du, Jesu Christ, based on an ancient melody, c. 1400
MIDI / Noteworthy Composer / XML

"Puer Nobis Nascitur," Trier manuscript, 15th Century. Adapted by Michael Praetorius, 1609; harmony by George Ratcliffe Woodward, 1910
MIDI / Noteworthy ComposerPDF / XML

1. All praise to Thee, eternal God,
Who, clothed in garb of flesh and blood,
Dost take a manger for Thy throne,
While worlds on worlds are Thine alone.

2. Once did the skies before Thee bow;
A virgin's arms contain Thee now,
While angels, who in Thee rejoice,
Now listen for Thine infant voice.

3. A little Child, Thou art our Guest
That weary ones in Thee may rest;
Forlorn and lowly is Thy birth
That we may rise to heaven from earth.

4. Thou comest in the darksome night
To make us children of the light,
To make us in the realms divine,
Like Thine own angels, round Thee shine.

5. All this for us Thy love hath done;
By This to Thee our love is won;
For this our joyful songs we raise
And shout our thanks in ceaseless praise.

Hymn 80 from The Lutheran Hymnal (St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941). This text was converted to ASCII format for Project Wittenberg by Cindy A. Beesley and is in the public domain. For more information about Project Wittenberg, contact Rev. Robert E. Smith of the Walther Library at Concordia Theological Seminary, 6600 N. Clinton St., Ft.Wayne, IN 46825 USA.

Notes from The Hymnuts
"All Praise to Thee, Eternal God," is based on a 11th century Latin sequence, Grates nunc omnes reddamus, which had become popular in the vernacular throughout Germany. It was first found in manuscript around 1370, and there is some evidence that it might even have been sung in the services of the church before the Reformation, with the priests doing the singing and the congregation joining at the close of each stanza by chanting "Kyrie, Eleison!" To this, Martin Luther added six stanzas and published the hymn first on broadsheet in late 1523 or early 1524, and then in Erfurt Enchiridia, 1524.

Authorship Unknown (87 88 4)
This tune appeared with the text to "All Praise to You, Eternal Lord" on the broadsheet as well as in the 1524 Erfurt Enchiridia, and could be the tune associated with the original German stanza. Although, it is not known for sure since no pre-Reformation source exists. The harmonization was prepared by Jan Bender for the Worship Supplement, 1969, to The Lutheran Hymnal.


John 1:14: "And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth." King James Version. Source: Project Gutenberg, URL: Site last accessed on July 23, 2006. Return

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