Heil dir im Siegerkranz
Former national anthem of Germany
|Lyrics||Heinrich Harries, 1790|
|Music||Unknown composer (uses the melody of "God Save the King")|
|Succeeded by||"Das Lied der Deutschen"|
"Heil dir im Siegerkranz"
Before the foundation of the Empire, it had been the royal anthem of Prussia since 1795 and remained it after 1871. The melody of the hymn derived from the British anthem "God Save the King". For these reasons, the song failed to become popular within all of Germany. Not only did it fail to win the support of most German nationalists, it was never recognized by the southern German states, such as Bavaria or Württemberg. After World War I, the German Empire came to an end and "Das Lied der Deutschen" became the national anthem of the Weimar Republic.
Heinrich Harries wrote the lyrics in 1790 in honour of King Christian VII of Denmark, and the line "Heil, Kaiser, dir" originally read "Heil, Christian, dir". In 1793, Harries' text was adapted by Balthasar Gerhard Schumacher for use in Prussia. Schumacher shortened Harries' text and replaced the word Christian with the word König (king). After the proclamation of the German Empire, the word König was replaced by Kaiser (emperor).
Heil dir im Siegerkranz,
Hail to thee in the Victor's Wreath,
These lyrics were used for the reign of Kaiser Wilhelm II, German Emperor and King of Prussia. One of the jokes at the time was that the song's title be changed to "Heil Dir im Sonderzug" ("Hail to Thee in Thy Royal Train"), owing to the Kaiser's frequent travels.
In the Kingdom of Bavaria, the official hymn was "Bayerische Königshymne" ("Heil unserm König, Heil!"), also sung to the melody of "God Save the King". Likewise, Liechtenstein has "Oben am jungen Rhein" (1920), sung to the same melody.
- Fischer & Senkel 2010, p. 90.
- Fischer & Senkel 2010, p. 91.
- Fehrenbach, Elisabeth. Politischer Umbruch und gesellschaftliche Bewegung: ausgewählte Aufsätze zur Geschichte Frankreichs und Deutschlands im 19. Jahrhundert. Oldenburg, 1997. p. 312.
- Sternburg, Wilhelm von. Die Geschichte der Deutschen. p. 131.
- Fischer & Senkel 2010, p. 93.
- Song No. 50 in Allgemeines Deutsches Kommersbuch, p. 47
- Reichel, Peter. Schwarz-Rot-Gold: kleine Geschichte deutscher Nationalsymbole nach 1945. C. H. Beck: München, 2005. p. 35.
- The melody was based on the Prussian hymn originally titled "Heil Dir Im Siegerkranz". "Hawaiʻi ponoʻī". Archived from the original on 2018-01-17. Retrieved 2018-06-02.
- Fischer, Michael; Senkel, Christian (2010). Klaus Tanner (ed.). Reichsgründung 1871: Ereignis, Beschreibung, Inszenierung. Münster: Waxmann Verlag.
|No anthem before
First German nation state
| Imperial anthem of the German Empire
as national anthem