A New Metrical Translation of the Original “Silent Night”

By | December 31, 2014

Stille NachtSeveral days ago I placed on Facebook a new literal English translation of the Christmas carol “Silent Night” (see www.jubalslyre.com/thoughts-on-silent-night). The interest was overwhelming and several people requested a metrical translation of the original text.

Here is a metrical translation that I have crafted and recrafted over many years. The intent has been to keep as much of the deep and rich theology of the original text as possible while at the same time making it easily understandable, singable, and practical. It is designed to fit the original melody, not the melody in common use, and employs for the most part a metrical scheme of 688866, the last two lines differing occasionally.

Choir editions are available for Mixed, Treble, and Male Choirs in both English and German. A Reprint Edition has also been developed so that the carol can be used with congregations and audiences. For details and ordering information, click here.

My ensembles have always enjoyed singing this translation. Hope you find it beneficial and useful as well. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Silent night! Holy night!
All the world sleeps; only one light
shines where Joseph and Mary keep
loving watch o’er their child, asleep.
Sleep in heavenly peace!
Sleep in heavenly peace!

Silent night! Holy night!
God’s only Son! O how You smile
brightly shining on us with love
as for us strikes salvation’s hour,
Jesus, with Your birth!
Jesus, with Your birth!

Silent night! Holy night!
Love, pouring down from golden heights,
is our Savior in whom we see
mercy, grace fulfilled perfectly.
Jesus, God become man!
Jesus, God become man!

Silent night! Holy night!
Where today God’s fatherly love
shines upon us with pow’r and we
all together come kneel and see
Jesus, Lord of the world!
Jesus, Lord of the world!

Silent night! Holy night!
Long, long ago God thought of us
and compassion and blessing flowed
through the prophets as they foretold
mercy to all of the world!
Mercy to all of the world!

Silent night! Holy night!
Shepherds first heard and then proclaimed
“Alleluia!” with angel choirs.
Sing it loudly both near and far:
“Jesus the Savior is here!”
“Jesus the Savior is here!”

Copyright © 2014 Martin P. Dicke. All rights reserved.

One thought on “A New Metrical Translation of the Original “Silent Night”

  1. Pingback: Thoughts on “Silent Night” | Jubal's Lyre

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