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David Denicke (Hymn-Writer)

Born: January 30, 1603 - Zittau (Oberlausitz), Saxony, Germany
Died: April 1, 1680 - Hannover, Germany

The jurist and church hymn-writer David Denicke was a son of a city judge. He studied philosophy and jurisprudence in Wittenberg and Jena and was for a while private lecturer in Königsberg. From 1625 to 1628 he made scholarly journeys to Holland, England and France.

In 1629 he became court master of the two elder sons of the Duke Ernst von Braunschweig-Lüneburg in Herzberg (Harz), in 1639 abbot of Stifts Bursfeld, in 1640 court counsellor, and in 1642 constitutor in Hannover.

The high-preacher and general super-inspector Justus Gesenius published in 1646 in co-operation with David Denicke a singing-book for the private devotion, from which the Hannover singing-book of 1659 came out. In this Reformation singing book many older and also contemporary songs were published for the first time, sometimes with partial change of words. Herein both already individual predecessors, not only Johann Heermann and Johann Rist had their own songs often transformed, but e.g. Andreas Gryphius, who re-wrote songs of Josua Stegmann. The changes made by Gesenius and Denicke witness often from aesthetic taste, so that some songs are sung in the Hannover version still today, such as ‘Auf Christi Himmelfahrt allein ich meine Nachfahrt gründe’ by Josua Wegelin. We owe to them the poetry and extension of a song from the Psalter of Kornelius Becker: "Nun jauchzt dem Herren, alle Welt!". Earnings/services have the Hannover song form acquired itself by the transformation of the old mixing song (Mischliedes) "in dulci jubilo" into the common version everywhere today of ‘Nun singet und sei froh’.

David Denicke own songs are common still today: ‘Herr, für dein Wort sei hoch gepreist; laß uns dabei verbleiben’, ‘Wir Menschen sind zu dem, was geistlich ist, untüchtig’ and ‘O Vater der Barmherzigkeit, ich falle dir zu Fuße’.


Source: BBKL Website, English translation by Aryeh Oron (June 2003)
Contributed by
Aryeh Oron (May 2003)

Texts of Bach Cantatas & Other Vocal Works

BWV 39, BWV 77, BWV 153

Chorale Texts used in Bach’s Vocal Works





Kommt, laßt euch den Herren lehren

O Gottes Sohn, Herr Jesu Christ

Schau, lieber Gott, wie meine Feind

Wenn einer alle Ding verstünd

Links to other Sites

DENICKE, David (BBKL) [German]




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Last update: Wednesday, June 14, 2017 09:37