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A Quiet or Leis (from Greek. Kyrie eleison "Lord, have mercy") is a medieval German-language hymn that on Kyrieleis , Kyrio-leis , Kirleis or Krles , later on Kyrieleison ends.

Quiet are among the oldest non-Latin liturgical chants. They arose in the 11th century from the liturgical custom of involving the congregation in the All Saints' litany and in Latin hymns through Kyrie calls . They are short, single-verse , usually four-line responsive responses in the vernacular to chants of the celebration of mass, especially to sequences on feast days of the church year . They were sung during processions and are an early expression of popular piety .

Since Martin Luther took up several quiet sounds and expanded them into chorals , they are also considered to be the pioneers of the evangelical hymn.

Quiet in the hymn book

The Praise of God and the Evangelical Hymnbook contain the following quiet words:

Evangelical hymns that take up the form of the quiet:

Modern hymns that take up the form of the quiet:

  • You child, at this sacred time (GL 254, EG 50), a modern Christmas tree by Jochen Klepper (1937)
  • Wood on Jesus' shoulder (GL 291, EG 97), a modern Easter holiday (Dutch by Willem Barnard 1963, German by Jürgen Henkys 1975)
  • My narrow limits (GL 437; EG-West / Reformed Church 600; EG-Hessen 584; EG-Württemberg 589; EG-Austria 574)


  • Volker Mertens:  Quiet and shouting. In: Ludwig Finscher (Hrsg.): The music in past and present . Second edition, subject part, volume 5 (Kassel - Meiningen). Bärenreiter / Metzler, Kassel et al. 1996, ISBN 3-7618-1106-3  ( online edition , subscription required for full access)
  • Walter Lipphardt: The beginnings of the German hymn. In: Musik und Altar 12 (1960), ZDB -ID 123518-7 , p. 73 ff.
  • Walter Lipphardt: The Medieval Quiet. In: Musik und Altar 15 (1963), pp. 167-173 and 16 (1964), pp. 20-24, 74-79, 176-181.
  • Bernhard Schmid: German liturgical song. In: Hans Musch (ed.): Music in worship. Volume 1: Historical basics, liturgy, liturgical chant. 5th edition. ConBrio, Regensburg 1993, ISBN 3-930079-21-6 , pp. 359-474, here pp. 365-367.