Werde munter, mein Gemüte

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"Werde munter, mein Gemüte"
Lutheran German hymn
BWV 244 Incipit Nr. 48 Bin ich gleich.svg
The beginning of Bach's setting of the sixth stanza in his St Matthew Passion
Text by Johann Rist
Melody by Johann Schop
Published 1642 (1642)

"Werde munter, mein Gemüte" (Become cheerful, my mind) is a Lutheran evening hymn by Johann Rist in twelve stanzas of eight lines each, printed in 1642. The hymn was translated to English and appeared in 67 hymnals.


The hymn was first published as "Dritte Zehen" (third ten) of Rist's Himlische Lieder (Heavenly songs) in Lüneburg in 1642. It was subtitled "A Christian evening hymn, with which to commit oneself to the protection of the Most High". Johann Crüger included it in the 1656 edition of his Praxis pietatis melica.[1]

Melody and musical settings[edit]

The hymn tune is by Johann Schop,[2] who often collaborated with Rist.[3] Georg Philipp Telemann composed a cantata Werde munter, mein Gemüte, TWV 1:1576, for choir, strings and continuo before 1760. Johann Sebastian Bach used the hymn's sixth stanza, "Bin ich gleich von dir gewichen", in his cantata Ich armer Mensch, ich Sündenknecht, BWV 55, and in his St Matthew Passion.[3] Max Reger composed a chorale prelude as No. 48 of his 52 Chorale Preludes, Op. 67 in 1902. Sigfrid Karg-Elert wrote an improvisation as part of his 66 Chorale improvisations for organ, Op. 65.[3]

The same hymn melody was assigned to the song "Jesu, meiner Seelen Wonne" written by Martin Janus (or Jahn).[3] Bach used it in the Leipzig version of his cantata Herz und Mund und Tat und Leben, BWV 147.[4] It became famous as the arrangement Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring.[4]


Translations to English were made by J. C. Jacobi, who published "Rouse thy self my Soul and gather" in his Psalmodia Germanica in 1722, and by Catherine Winkworth, who published "Sink not yet, my soul, to slumber" in 1858 in her Lyra Germanica.[1] The song appeared in 67 hymnals.[1]


  1. ^ a b c "Werde munter, mein Gemüte". Hymnary.org. Retrieved 26 February 2017.
  2. ^ "Werde munter mein Gemüte / Text and Translation of Chorale". Bach-Cantatas. Retrieved 27 February 2017.
  3. ^ a b c d "Chorale Melodies used in Bach's Vocal Works / Werde munter, mein Gemüthe". Bach-Cantatas. Retrieved 27 February 2017.
  4. ^ a b Dürr, Alfred; Jones, Richard D. P. (2006). The Cantatas of J. S. Bach: With Their Librettos in German-English Parallel Text. Oxford University Press. pp. 670–676. ISBN 978-0-19-929776-4.

External links[edit]