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Germany is famous for many things from its 300 types of breads to its never ending list of innovations and inventions, making our world a better, easier and happier place to live.

Germany’s unique rituals and beautiful Christmas markets filled with joy and happiness truly sets apart from the rest of the world during the holiday season. 

Most of the carols that we have grown-up singing during Christmas time are also originated in Germany and have traveled all around the world with time, touching fame and love everywhere they were sang and translated into.

The spirit of Christmas, and the whole holiday season, is not complete without the help of singing carols with family and friends. 

Let us throw some light on the origin and the popularity of the most amazing carols, Germany offered to the whole world through the course of time. 

1) Stille Nacht ('Silent Nght')

This is the most popular carol all around the world. A poem was written by a pastor Joseph Franz Mohr in Austria in the year 1814. It was made into a carol on the Christmas eve of 1816 by his musician friend ‘Franz Xaver Gruber’ within few hours. It was made in a hurry as the pastor needed some carol for the Christmas of that year. Who knew it would be so famous in a couple of years, that it has been translated in 140 languages and sung all around the world, be it shops, roads, markets, malls or even airports.

Some of the worth learning German words:

  • himmlisch (heavenly)
  • heilig (holy)
  • einsam (lonely)
  • der Engel (the angel)
  • der Retter (the saviour)
  • die Geburt (the birth)

2) O Tannenbaum ('Oh Christmas Tree')

The song “O Tannenbaum” has actually nothing to do with Christmas.
Tannenbaum is a German word which means fir tree.
The composer and organist Ernst Anschütz wrote a song to praise the beauty of a regular fir tree. He composed this song in 1824. At the same time around people started to use fir as a Christmas tradition.
Gradually with the years, this song become one of the most lovable song during Christmas time.

Some of the words worth noticing:

  • treu – loyal
  • die Kraft – strength
  • die Hoffnung – the hope
  • jeder Zeit – any time

3) Alle Jahre wieder ('Every year')

Some of the best-known [German] Christmas carols come from Thuringia. This also originated in Thuringia by Johann Wilhelm Hey, a court chaplin in Gotha in Thuringia in 1837 .
It has some varying renditions, but most of them have the same, if not similar, lyrics.

This carol is equally famous among people and is sung with love and joy.

Some of the words worth remembering:

  • die Erde – the earth
  • die Menschen – the people
  • unerkannt – unrecognized
  • wieder – again

4)“Es ist ein Ros’ entsprungen” (Lo, How a Rose E’er Blooming)

This traditional German Christmas hymn first appeared in print in 1599. Although the authors of this song are unknown, but it is certain that the lyrics come from Germany.
The familiar harmonization was written by German composer Michael Praetorius in 1609.
Along the years, composers added a few lines to create a more fruitful story about how Mary learned she was to become the mother of Jesus. There are different Catholic and Protestant versions

5) “Kling, Glöckchen” (Ring, Little Bell)

It is a popular German Christmas song dating back to the 19th century. Bells and Christmas have long gone together.
The rhythm and the music of this carol is so soothing and joyful, that it truly sets the Christmas feeling, especially among children. 
It was written by Karl Enslin and composed by Benedikt Widmann.

Some of the interesting German words to know:

  • das Glöckchen – the small bell
  • die Tür – the gate
  • erfrieren – to freeze
  • das Herz – the heart

6) “Morgen kommt der Weihnachtsmann” (Tomorrow Santa’s coming)

This beautiful carol was written by Hoffmann von Fallersleben, who is famous for penning down the national anthem song for Germany – “Das Lied der Deutschen”.

He wrote this carol in 1835 expressing the joy for the arrival of Santa Claus by his beloved ones on earth. This carol’s melody will sound familiar because it is the same traditional tune used for “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star.”

Some of the interesting German words to know:

  • die Schmerzen – the pain
  • das Schaf – the sheep
  • der Esel – the donkey
  • warten – to wait

So people, we have learned about some of the best German Christmas carols. Download on your phones or load on Youtube and sing along this Christmas season.
These songs will surely add a nice flavor to your Christmas atmosphere at your homes or work places. 

Merry Christmas!

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