Evangelical hymn book

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Evangelical hymn book (edition for the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Bavaria and the former regional church in Mecklenburg , 2009)
Layout of the Mecklenburg / Pomerania edition

The Evangelical Hymnbook (EG) is the current hymnbook of the German-speaking Evangelical congregations in Germany , Alsace - Lorraine , Austria and Luxembourg , which was introduced between 1993 and 1996 depending on the regional church. German-speaking communities in Switzerland have their own hymn books. The EC is published in 14 different regional church regional editions. These consist of the main edition with 535 common songs and chants as well as additional appendices each with different regional parts. The EG is the successor to the Evangelical Church Hymn book (EKG).

The EKD Council and the Church Conference decided in 2017 that the Evangelical Hymn book should be fundamentally revised. The reasons for this are the Luther Bible from 2017 , the pericope reorganization, newly added songs and new possibilities for digitization. A steering group began its work in 2019, and a hymn book commission is to be appointed in spring 2020.


The common stem part of the Evangelical Hymn book contains under 535 numbers 567 mainly songs and chants intended for worship use; thus it is 173 chants more extensive than its predecessor, the main part of the EKG. In total, the songs in the hymn book comprise around 2860 stanzas; there are fluctuations depending on the type of counting. From the song with the greatest number of stanzas, "Ich singe dir mit Herz und Mund" (No. 324) by Paul Gerhardt , 18 stanzas are printed.

In contrast to the EKG, a whole series of newer songs and liturgical chants (for example from Taizé ) were recorded. The hymn book contains a large number of songs marked with an "ö", which correspond to the version developed by the Working Group for Ecumenical Songs and are often included in the Catholic praise of God . A number of songs were changed in pitch, melody and rhythm compared to the EKG. In addition, unlike the EKG, the EG contains polyphonic sentences and canons for some songs .

Some regional churches have added a three- or four-part choral score for some songs (e.g. EG 69 according to Michael Praetorius , EG 140 according to Claude Goudimel ), which helps support the old choir practice in worship. Guitar chords or chord symbols are given for many songs .

For around 20 songs in the main part, foreign-language texts (English, Zulu, Swedish etc.) were taken into account, which can be used in international church services. Other foreign-language songs are included in various regional sections, there then also songs in regional dialects, e.g. B. Low German in the Hannoversche EG.

The text parts of the EC, which are included in the regional parts, are usually considerably more extensive than those of the EKG and contain, for example, psalms , prayers for various occasions, regulations for church services or devotions, confessional texts of the churches such as old or newer beliefs , Luther's little ones Catechism , the Confessio Augustana , the Heidelberg Catechism and the Barmer Theological Declaration . Some regional sections contain hymn appendices with information on epochs of hymn creation, poets and composers; for other regional parts (such as the one for Bavaria and Thuringia) these appendices appeared in a separate supplement.

Regional parts of the EC

Evangelical hymn book (EG), community edition for Hesse and Nassau

The following regional parts are currently in use:

Accompanying expenses

The partner publishers of the regional churches and third parties have published editions "with added value" in addition to the respective regional editions for parishioners (for worship and domestic use):

  • Special expenses only for the needs of parishes
  • Large edition (only the songs from the main part 1–535, text only) in A4 for the visually impaired
  • Evangelical hymn book electronic (digital edition on CD-ROM, from 1999) with all regional parts , recorded with the music notation program capella and presented with the program MFchi
  • Organ chorale books for the regional editions each with a short intonation as well as 3 and 4-part accompanying movements for all melodies
  • Trombone chorale books for all regional editions, which contain intonations and accompanying clauses for wind instruments and trombone choirs for the songs of the EG
  • "Keyboard games" with piano accompaniments - main part with a selection of some songs from the regional parts
  • with chord symbols for guitar, keyboard or bands or with guitar tablature - some only for a selection of the main part songs, some for complete regional editions
  • Notebooks and books with 3- or 4-part choral movements each with a selection of the songs included
  • Audio CDs with the melodies of all the songs for accompaniment (each in the required number of stanzas).

The books provided for accompanying contain i. d. Usually only the text of the first stanza (not so in the edition for Rhineland-Westphalia-Lippe with chords).

In addition, a three-volume handbook on the hymnbook has been published ( keyword concordance , author and song studies) as well as a workbook with pedagogical suggestions in six deliveries.

In the Cantico song app, developed in cooperation with the Evangelical Church in Württemberg, the complete Evangelical hymn book with all regional parts is to be available by the end of 2020, but only as in-app purchases for licensing reasons.

See also


  • Gerhard Hahn , Jürgen Henkys (Hrsg.): Liederkunde to the Protestant hymn book . (= Handbook for the Evangelical Hymnal; Vol. 3). Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, Göttingen 2000 ff. (20 issues published by 2015).
  • Wolfgang Herbst (Hrsg.): Composers and songwriters of the Protestant hymn book . (= Handbook for the Evangelical Hymnal; Vol. 2). Vandenhoeck and Ruprecht, Göttingen 1999, ISBN 3-525-50318-0
  • Ernst Lippold, Günter Vogelsang: Concordance to the Evangelical Hymnal with a list of the beginnings of verses, canons, polyphonic movements and weekly songs . (= Handbook for the Evangelical Hymnal; Vol. 1). Vandenhoeck and Ruprecht, Göttingen 1995, ISBN 3-525-50316-4
  • Matthias Neufeld: The image of the church in the singing of the congregation. Reflections on the meaning of the sung word for the self-understanding of the Church based on selected songs from the "Evangelical Hymnal" . (= Freiburg dissertation series; Vol. 7 [recte: 8]). Rombach, Freiburg 2005, ISBN 3-7930-5015-7 ( full text )
  • Karl Christian Thust: Bibliography on the songs of the Protestant hymn book . Vandenhoeck and Ruprecht, Göttingen 2006, ISBN 978-3-525-50336-2
  • Evangelical hymnbook for guitar, keyboard and band. Gütersloher Verlagshaus / Neukirchener Verlag, 1997/2014; ISBN 978-3-579-00027-5 or ISBN 978-3-7887-1027-9 (for regional edition Rhineland-Westphalia-Lippe or the main part of the other editions)
  • Guitar book for the Protestant hymn book. 2 volumes. Strube, Munich 1995, ISMN 979-0-2009-1251-7 (search in the DNB portal) .

Web links

Commons : Evangelical Hymnal  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Who is developing the new evangelical hymn book? EKD, accessed on February 23, 2020
  2. Why is a new hymn book being created? EKD, accessed on February 23, 2020
  3. Wolfgang Töllner (Ed.): Small reference work for the Evangelical Hymnbook. Edition for the Evangelical Lutheran Churches in Bavaria and Thuringia. Evangelical Press Association for Bavaria eV, Munich undated [1996], ISBN 3-583-12400-6 .
  4. Published on behalf of the Evangelical Lutheran Regional Church Council. Church in Bavaria from the Worship Institute Nuremberg 2011
  5. Christa Kirschbaum: EGplus - The new supplement to the Evangelical Hymnal ( Memento from September 15, 2017 in the Internet Archive )
  6. Evangelical Lutheran Church of Saxony: Supplement to the hymn book: Sings von Hope. New songs for the congregation as a supplement to the hymn book ( Memento from October 31, 2010 in the Internet Archive )
  7. ISBN 978-3-438-02085-7 for the current version 3.1
  8. ↑ The song app “Cantico” will be published for the Kirchentag , EKD, May 14, 2019, accessed on February 23, 2020
  9. Gesangbuch goes online , elk-wue, May 14, 2019, accessed on February 23, 2020