Thomas Selle

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Thomas Selle, portrait by Dirk Diricks (1653)

Thomas Selle (born March 23, 1599 in Zörbig ; † July 2, 1663 in Hamburg ) was a German teacher , church musician and composer of the Baroque era .


Selle received his training in Leipzig , where he could have been a Thomaner under Sethus Calvisius and Johann Hermann Schein . In 1624 he began to teach at the school in Heide (Holstein) before becoming rector and probably head of church music in Wesselburen in 1625 . From 1634 Selle was cantor in Itzehoe , from 1641 cantor at the Johanneum and music director of the four main churches in Hamburg, from 1642 as Canonicus Minor also at the Mariendom .

Under the title Opera omnia he left copies of most of his sacred works to the city of Hamburg with his entire musical legacy in 16 part books and 3 volumes of tablature. These are kept in the Hamburg State and University Library.

Selle set many of Johann Rist's poems to music as solo songs with bass accompaniment . For the festivities of the church year he created an important series of musical histories (musically presented Gospels in the style of responsorial chants) as well as settings of the Passion report in the Gospel of John . He wrote the melody for the hymn "Auf, auf, all you Christians" ( EG Württemberg 536).

Selle is equally important for the early history of the German song as with its histories and intermedia for the history of the oratorical passion .

Works (selection)

  • Concertuum Latino-Sacrorum 2.4. et 5. Vocibus ad Bassum Continuum concinendorum Liber Primus. Handwritten. (includes 11 works)
  • Concertuum Latino-Sacrorum et 14. Vocibus ad Bassum Continuum concinendorum Liber Secundus. Handwritten. (includes 15 works)
  • Concertuum Latino-Sacrorum de praecipuis Festis anniversariis et 17. Vocibus ad Bassum Continuum concinendorum Liber Tertius. Handwritten. (includes 30 works)
  • Concertuum Latino-Sacrorum et 10. Vocibus ad Bassum Continuum concinendorum Liber Quartus. Handwritten. (includes 33 works)
  • First part of Teutscher ecclesiastical concerts, madrigals and motets, with 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14 and 16 voices ... to 1.2.3. and 4th choirs Handwritten. (includes 52 works)
  • Other part of the Teutscher clerical concerts, madrigals and motets, with and 12. votes ... to 1.2. and 3rd choirs Handwritten. (includes 61 works)
  • Third part of Teutscher Geistlicher Concerts etc., in which there are many churches = psalms and songs, with Votes ... to and 5th choirs Handwritten. (includes 74 works)
  • Concertuum binus vocibus ad bassum continuum concinendorum decas , 1634
  • Concertuum trivocalium germanico sacrorum pentas , 1635
  • New musical festival devotions (Rist), 1655
  • St. John Passion:
    • sine intermediis, 1641
    • con intermediis, 1643
  • St. Matthew Passion , 1642


  • 6 sacred concerts , arranged by A. Egidi, Berlin 1929
  • Passion according to the Evangelist Johannes with intermedia , edited by R. Gerber, Wolfenbüttel 1933


  • S. Günther: The sacred concert music of Thomas Selle together with a biography. Dissertation Giessen 1935
  • J. Birke: The Passion Music by Thomas Selle (1599 - 1663) , dissertation Heidelberg 1957
  • W. Braun: Thomas Selles Lasso Arrangements , Yearbook of Church Music XLVII, 1963
  • Thomas Selle (1599-1663). Contributions to the life and work of the Hamburg cantor and composer on the occasion of his 400th birthday. Herzberg 2000

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. a b Brockhaus Riemann Musiklexikon Vol. 4 (1998) ISBN 3-254-08399-7
  2. a b Horst Seeger : Musiklexikon Personen A – Z / Deutscher Verlag für Musik Leipzig (1981)
predecessor Office successor
Erasmus Sartorius Cantor et Director chori musici in Hamburg
Christoph Bernhard