200 years of singing Si­lent Night

Si­lent Night

The Southern Gazette - - Front Page -

Ar­guably the most fa­mous Christ­mas carol of all, turned 200 years old in 2018.

The song’s lyrics were writ­ten by Joseph Mohr, a priest, in 1816. He had Franz Xaver Gruber set them to mu­sic for a Christ­mas Eve church ser­vice in Obern­dorf, Aus­tria, in De­cem­ber 1818.

In Ger­man, the carol is known as or

The song is the source of a poignant mo­ment on Christ­mas Eve dur­ing the First World War in 1914.

In the midst of a de­clared Christ­mas truce be­tween Ger­many and the Al­lied forces, ac­counts from the time re­port a Ger­man sol­dier, Walter Kirschoff, be­gan to sing the song.

Nearby Bri­tish soldiers could hear him, and rec­og­niz­ing the tune, started singing it as well, cre­at­ing a brief but mem­o­rable mo­ment of peace and tran­quil­ity be­tween en­e­mies.

In 2011, was granted in­tan­gi­ble cultural her­itage sta­tus by UNESCO be­cause of its im­por­tance in world cul­ture.

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