Lutheran Hymnody

Martin Luther
(1483-1546)


Lutheranism
is the branch of Protestantism that generally follows the teachings of Martin Luther. The Lutheran movement diffused after 1517 from Saxony through many other German territories into Scandinavia. In the 18th century it spread to America and, thereafter, into many nations of the world, and it has come to number more than 70 million adherents. As such, it lays claim to being the largest non Roman Catholic body in the Western Christian church. [From Believe, used by permission. See Lutheranism, Protestant Reformation, and Martin Luther at the WEB site, Believe. For indepth information, see Martin Luther and Lutheranism from the Catholic Encyclopedia. Also, check out Protestantism and The Reformation.]

Martin Luther is important in the history of hymnody for restoring congregational singing in worship. In addition, he wrote hymns, composed hymn tunes and wrote extensively about the importance of music and art in worship.

General information about Lutheran hymnody

The significance of Martin Luther
Luther's Hymns in English and the original German (The Wittenberg Project)
The Musical Reforms of Martin Luther 1
The Musical Reforms of Martin Luther 2
The Lutheran chorale
A Reason to Sing -- Martin Luther and the importance of congregational singing, by J. P. Janson
Luther, Bach, and the Early Reformation Chorale (Robert L. Marshall)
Historical periods of Lutheran hymnody
Lutheran hymn writers (texts)
Lutheran chorale composers (tunes)
So, what's a Meistersinger?
Rhythmic/Isorhythmic chorales
Precursors of Lutheran hymnody (German hymnody before the Reformation)
Sources of German Reformation hymns
The use of the chorale in the German Service
Important collections of Lutheran hymns
The influence of Lutheran hymnody on some other traditions
What's happening now with Lutheran hymnody?
A short list of Lutheran hymns you should know
Renaissance [musical] Style


Explore some sites devoted to Martin Luther and Lutheran beliefs

For a brief introduction to the life and theology of Martin Luther, see Martin Luther and Lutheranism, particularly The Lutheran Tradition: Doctrines [from Believe].

Sites devoted to Martin Luther:

For a comprehensive discussion of Lutheran history and theology see Martin Luther and Lutheranism [from the Catholic Encyclopedia.

What do Lutherans Believe (The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America -- ELCA)
What Lutherans Believe (The Lutheran Church Missouri Synod - LCMS)
All about Martin Luther (Michigan State University)
Life and Times of Martin Luther (Wittenberg University)
Luther's Hymns in English and the original German (The Wittenberg Project)
The Lutheran Bible (Library at Cornell University)
The Lutheran Mass of 1526 (The Wittenberg Project at Concordia Theological Seminary)
The Musical Reforms of Martin Luther (Charles K. Moss, Composers.net)

See Martin Luther: Music and God (a course at Vanderbilt University) -- Because sites for courses like this may not alwayas be available, I have copied the contents of several pages here:


Explore some sites devoted to The Protestant Reformation


Explore some sites devoted to the Lutheran Church, Lutheran worship and Lutheran hymnody

Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
Evangelical Lutheran Church Missouri Synod

The Commission on Worship - Lutheran Church Missouri Synod (LCMS)

Lutheran Hymn Index - Download a MS Excel document containing a comprehensive list of over 1600 Lutheran hymns along with an index of which Lutheran hymnals contain these hymns. Also available in PDF format.