The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Silent Night! Hallowed Night!

For Christmas Eve

Words: Words: Stille Nacht! Heilige Nacht!, Rev. Joseph Mohr, 1816
Translation: J. F. Warner, 1849

Music: "Stille Nacht," Franz Xaver Gruber (1787-1863), circa 18181
MIDI / Noteworthy Composer / PDF / XML
Source: Silent Night -- The Original Sheet Music

Source: Charles Dingley, ed., The Devotional Harmonist (New York: George Lane and Levi Scott, 1851), p. 373.

See Notes and Links to Translations of "Stille Nacht"

1. Silent night! halllow'd night!
Land and deep silent sleep,
Softly glitters bright Bethlehem's star,
Beck'ning Israel's eye from afar,
Where the Saviour is born,
Where the Saviour is born.

2. Silent night! hallow'd night!
On the plain wakes the strain,
Sung by heavenly harbingers bright,
Fraught with tidings of boundless delight,
Jesus, the Saviour, has come,
Jesus, the Saviour has come.

3. Silent night! hallow'd night!
Earth, awake, silence break,
High your anthems of melody raise,
Sing to heaven in cordial praise,
Peace forever shall reign,
Peace forever shall reign.


1. Other editors have replaced this line with

Sheet music from Charles Dingley, ed., The Devotional Harmonist (New York: George Lane and Levi Scott, 1851), p. 373.

Sheet music from Tullius Clinton O'Kane, ed., Joy to the World: Or, Sacred Songs for Gospel Meetings (Walden and Stowe, 1878), p. 77, #91

Sheet music from R M Bishop, ed., The Christian Hymnal: A Collection of Hymns and Tunes for Congregational and Social Worship. Revised Edition (Central Book Concern, 1882), p. 197, #557.

Sheet music "Hallowed Night" by Asa Hull from Asa Hull, ed., Happy Greetings (New York: Asa Hull, 1888), p. 150.

Sheet music from Edwin Barfield Chappell, William James Kirkpatrick, eds., Songs of Praise and Service (Nashville, TN: Smith & Lamar, 1912), p. 149, No. 152.

Sheet Music "Bethlehem's Star" by H. R. Palmer from Life-Time Hymns (Chicago: R.R. McCabe & Co., 1896), p. 83.

SNHalN-Life-Time_Hymns-1896-p83-0102-91.jpg (86346 bytes)


This is believed to be the oldest translation of "Stille Nacht" in the English language. Translated by J. F. Warner, it was first published in Charles Dingley, ed., The Devotional Harmonist (New York: George Lane and Levi Scott, 1851), p. 373. Prepared for some Methodist Episcopal Churches in New York and New Jersey, the copyright was 1849.

The scanned copy found at Google Books was damaged. The correct lyrics were kindly supplied by Mr. David Macfarlane, to whom I am very grateful.

According to John Julian, this carol was also found as No. 131 in Campbell's 1865 Christian Hymn Book (text only). Julian also wrote that "it is suggested by, rather than a tr. of the German." (Dictionary of Hymnology, 1907, p. 761). This observation is also true of most other "translations" of Stille Nacht. It should be noted that the Campbell version contained an altered fourth line in the third verse, a not uncommon occurrance.

Occurs in numerous collections including:

The Hymnary identifies 38 instances of Warner's "translation," including adaptations.

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