Music For Advent: Secular; Saint Nicholas

Nikolaus Angel KrampusToday is Saint Nicholas’s Eve, also known as Krampuslauf, of Krampusnacht. Krampus has been getting a lot of attention in the United States lately. It saddens me that the American “discovery” of krampus has been a postmodern skimming off of culture without any exploration of the depth of the tradition, or how it’s expressed. The focus is all Krampus and no Nikolaus, or Nicholas. It’s all trappings of the demon and no gifts of the Saint, all Law and no Gospel. There’s a charming description of a visit from Saint Nicholas with Krampus in tow on the blog Harde/Knappe Family in Wien.

Today I’m preparing for a visit from Saint Nicholas by following the the collect for the first Sunday of Advent:

Stir up, we beseach thee, Thy power, O Lord, and come, that by Thy protection we may be rescued from the threatening perils of our sin and saved by Thy mighty deliverance; who livest and reignest with the Father and the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. Amen.

It’s the “stir up” part that I’m doing as I bake gingerbread for Saint Nicholas to hand out to the children at church when he visits this Sunday. But, what about that secular music?

Kling Glöckchen klingNikolaus at the Door

Kling, Glöckchen, klingelingeling,
kling, Glöckchen, kling!

Laßt mich ein, ihr Kinder,
s’ist so kalt der Winter,
öffnet mir die Türen,
laßt mich nicht erfrieren!

Kling, Glöckchen, klingelingeling,
kling, Glöckchen, kling!

Mädchen, hört, and Bübehen,
macht mir auf das Stübchen,
bring’ euch viele Gaben,
sollt euch dran erlaben!

Kling, Glöckchen, klingelingeling,
kling, Glöckchen, kling!

Hell erglühn die Kerzen,
öffnet mir die Herzen,
will drin wohnen fröhlich,
frommes Kind. wie selig.

Kling, Glöckchen, klingelingeling,
kling, Glöckchen, kling!

In English:

Clang, bell, clang, clangelangelang,
Clang, bell, clang, clang!

Children, let me enter;
‘Tis so cold the winter.
Doors to me unclose then,
Lest I might get frozen!Nikolaus with Toys

Clang, bell, clang, clangelangelang,
Clang, bell, clang, clang!

Ev’ry girl and boy, hear!
Let me in the foyer.
Many presents I’ll bring,
If you’ll be allowing.

Clang, bell, clang, clangelangelang,
Clang, bell, clang, clang!

Candles bright are glowing,
Hearts to me are showing;
There I’ll stay rejoicing,
Good child, with your blessing.

Clang, bell, clang, clangelangelang,
Clang, bell, clang, clang!

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