Christ lag in Todes Banden, BWV 4, is an Easter chorale cantata by
Johann Sebastian Bach. Translated to "Christ lay in death's bonds"
(pictured in an 18th-century Luther Bible), it is one of his earliest
church cantatas, a genre to which Bach later contributed complete
cantata cycles for all occasions of the liturgical year. The composition
was probably intended for a performance in 1707, supporting his
application for a post at a church in Mühlhausen. Both text and music
are based on Martin Luther's Easter hymn of the same name. An opening
sinfonia is followed by seven chorale variations per omnes versus: Bach
used in each vocal movement the unchanged words and tune of a stanza of
the chorale. The variations are arranged symmetrically:
chorus–duet–solo–chorus–solo–duet–chorus, with the focus on
the central fourth stanza about the battle between Life and Death. For
his first Easter as Thomaskantor in Leipzig in 1724, Bach used the
cantata again, and also for the following year as part of his cycle of
chorale cantatas. In the extant score of the Leipzig performances, the
four vocal parts are sometimes reinforced by a choir of trombones.
Read more: <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christ_lag_in_Todes_Banden,_BWV_4>
Today's selected anniversaries:
Pope John XXII issued a papal bull declaring that some of the
works of German theologian and mystic Meister Eckhart were heretical.
To protect American merchant ships from Barbary pirates, the
United States Congress passed the Naval Act to establish a naval force,
consisting of the USS Constitution and five other frigates, which
eventually became the United States Navy.
Encouraged by the British Special Operations Executive, a group
of pro-Western Serb-nationalist Royal Yugoslav Air Force officers
planned and conducted a coup d'état after Yugoslavia joined the Axis
The Washington Metro, the second-busiest rapid transit system
in the US, opened to commuters.
The dam holding Situ Gintung, an artificial lake in Tangerang
District, Indonesia, failed, resulting in floods killing at least 100
Wiktionary's word of the day:
1. (Christianity) The Lord's prayer, especially in a Roman Catholic
2. A slow, continuously moving lift or elevator consisting of a loop of
open-fronted cabins running the height of a building, the arrangement
resembling a rosary. The moving compartment is entered at one level and
left when the desired level is reached.
3. (architecture) A bead-like ornament in mouldings. […]
4. (archaic) A string of beads used in counting prayers that are said; a
5. (archaic) A patent medicine, so named because salesmen would pray the
Lord's prayer over it before selling it.
Wikiquote quote of the day:
Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to
my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your
Father; and to my God, and your God.