Today in History: Dec. 24

Stille Nacht, heilige Nacht,
Alles schläft; einsam wacht
Nur das traute hochheilige Paar.
Holder Knabe im lockigen Haar,
Schlaf in himmlischer Ruh!
Schlaf in himmlischer Ruh!
—Joseph Mohr, “Stille Nacht”

Father Joseph Mohr, a parish priest in Oberndorf, Austria, composed a poem he called “Stille Nacht,” and brought it to a local organist, Franz Xaver Gruber, to see if he could write a tune for it. Gruber did. On this date in 1818, Mohr and Gruber debuted their song, Gruber on guitar, during a Christmas Eve Mass.

John Freeman Young translated it into English decades later, and published “Silent Night” in 1859.

A lovely rendition of the song, by Klima

* * * *
Enrico Caruso gave his final performance with The Metropolitan Opera, as Eléazar in La Juive, on this date in 1910.

* * * *
Matthew Arnold was born on this date in 1822. Howard Hughes was born 110 years ago today. Ava Gardner was born on this date in 1922. The late Ian “Lemmy” Kilmister was born on this date in 1945. (He died on December 28.)

* * * *
Mary Higgins Clark is 89 today. Dr. Anthony S. Fauci is 76. Dana Gioia is 66 today. Lee Daniels is 57. Carol Vorderman is 56. Diedrich Bader is 50. Ricky Martin is 45. Stephenie Meyer is 43.

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  1. loisajay · December 24, 2016

    I am scratching my head at most of the birthday people….**heavy sigh** Have a great Holiday, Mark & Jen!


  2. rogershipp · December 25, 2016

    One of my favorite songs!


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