The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

From Earthly Tasks Lift Up Thine Eyes

Written by: Heinrich Schutz (1585-1672)
Translation by Catherine Winkworth

1. From earthly tasks lift up thine eyes
Within a crib, in slumber lies
A little Child so young and fair:
'Tis Christ, the Lord, Who resteth there!

2. "Welcome to earth, Thou noble Guest,
Thru Whom the world is ever blest!"
Himself will our salvation be,
Himself will all from sin set free.

3. O dearest Lord, Thou holy Child,
Make Thee a bed, soft, undefiled,
Within my heart, that it may be
A resting place kept quiet for Thee.

4. For very joy my heart doth leap,
My lips no more can silence keep:
"Glory to God in highest heav'n,
Who unto men His Son hath giv'n!"

Heinrich Schütz was the great master of Protestant church music before Johann Sebastian Bach. He was the most important German composer of his generation. Schütz wrote a very large amount of church music, Cantiones Sacrae and Symphoniae Sacrae, with settings in both German and Latin. Born Oct.14, 1585, he first became a member of the court musical establishment of Landgrave Moritz of Hessen-Kassel, later (1617) entering the service of the Electors of Saxony in Dresden, where he remained until his death Nov. 6, 1672. Standing between Palestrina and Bach, Schütz was of particular importance in German music as he applied the grand Italian choral style and developed it into a semi-dramatic church music, which paved the way for the Bach era.

Source: Biography of Henrich Schutz. For a more complete biography, see Heinrich Schutz and Classical Musical Pages, and many other sites


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