Alberti, Heinrich

Alberti, Heinrich, a Lutheran hymn-writer and musician, was born at Lobenstein, in Prussia, June 28, 1604. He was intended for the legal profession, and was to have studied for that purpose at Leipsic, but he gave the preference to music, to which he devoted the energies of his life. At Dresden and Konigsberg he cultivated his chosen art, and at the. latter place became, in 1631, organist of the cathedral. One of his principal friends was Simon Dach. the eminent musician and hymn-writer. Alberti composed many beautiful tunes for Dach's hymns, as well .as for his own and others. The piety that shines forth in his hymns shed its sunlight first to his own heart. He died Oct. 6, 1668. Albert Knapp calls him "an excellent musician for the times in which he lived, and a good poet." He is the author of the excellent hymn Gott des Himmels und der Erden (Engl. transl. in Lyra Germ. i, 213: "God who madest earth and heaven"), to which Alberti himself composed the cheerful tune that is still used in Germany. It is related that in 1685 a tailor at work in the house of a Jew at Hamburg, through singing this famous hymn, and especially the third verse-

"Let the night of sin depart, As this earthly light hath fled. Jesus, take in to thy heart; In the blood that thou hast shed Is my hope and help alone For the evil I have done was the means of leading the daughter of the Jew to make inquiries about Christ, which resulted in her believing in him. See Koch, Geschichte des deutschen Kirchenzliedes, iii, 191 sq., 257 sq. (B. P.)

 
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