Simon Dach (29 July 1605 â" 15 April 1659) was a Prussian German lyrical poet and writer of hymns, born in Memel (now KlaipÄda) in the Duchy of Prussia.
Although brought up in humble circumstances (his father was a poorly paid court interpreter in Memel), he received a classical education in the Domschule of KÃ¶nigsberg (KrÃ³lewiec), and in the Latin schools of Wittenberg, and Magdeburg, and entered the University of KÃ¶nigsberg in 1626 where he was a student of theology and philosophy. In 1626, he left Magdeburg to escape both the plague and the Thirty Years' War, and returned to his Prussian homeland, settling in KÃ¶nigsberg, where he remained for the rest of his life.
After earning his degree, Dach was a private tutor for a time, then was appointed Kollaboralor (teacher) in 1633 and co-rector of the Domschule (cathedral school) in KÃ¶nigsberg in 1636. In 1639 he was appointed by Adrian Brauer to the Chair of Poetry at the Albertina University in KÃ¶nigsberg. This was a post he held until his death. Also, in 1640 he received a doctorate from the University.
Part of his official duties as Chair of Poetry was to create poems for various University celebrations, programs, debates and funeral services of his colleagues â" all of these written either Latin or Greek. In 1644, he wrote the Play Sorbuisa, which celebrated the centennial of the University of KÃ¶nigsberg.
Dach became one of the prominent heads of the musical KÃ¼rbishÃ¼tte, a group that included, among others, George Weissel, Valentin Thilo and Johann Franck. The summer-house of organist and composer Heinrich Albert became the meeting place of this group of poets, hymnists and musicians, who met in to create new hymns as well as to give readings of their own poetry. This group published eight books of poems and songs from 1638 to 1650, the books meeting with great success. Of the approximately 200 poems and songs contained within the books, Dach had the lion's share, with 125 being his compositions. The songs and hymns contained in these books, especially those of Dach, were sung throughout Germany and frequently appeared in pirated editions.
Later life and poetic success
In KÃ¶nigsberg he became friends with and collaborated with Heinrich Albert (1604â"1651) and Robert Roberthin (1600â"1648) and with them formed the KÃ¶nigsberger Dichtergruppe (loosely translated as the "KÃ¶nigsberg Poets' Association"). In 1639 he was appointed professor of poetry at KÃ¶nigsberg through the influence of his friend Roberthin. He sang the praises of the house of the Electors of Brandenburg in a collection of poems entitled Kurbrandenburgische Rose, Adler, Lowe und Scepter (1661), and also produced many occasional poems, several of which became popular; the most famous of them is "Anke von Tharaw Ã¶ss, de my gefÃ¶llt"  (rendered from Low Saxon by Herder into modern German as "Ãnnchen von Tharau"),  composed in 1637 in honor of the marriage of a friend.
Among Dach's best-known hymns, many of which are still sung, are the following: "Ich bin ja, Herr, in deiner Macht", "Ich bin bei Gott in Gnaden durch Christi Blut und Tod", and "O, wie selig seid ihr doch, ihr Frommen." In all, he wrote over 150 hymns, and a number of poems, and was considered the leading figure of the hymnists and poets of KÃ¶nigsberg.
- Handbuch des Kantorendienstes: Einf. u. Handreichung zu einem wiederentdeckten Dienst in d. Gemeinde ISBN 3-87088-144-5
Poems of note
- Ueber den Eingang der SchloÃbrÃ¼cke (1641)
- Lied der Freundschaft
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- ^ KÃ¶nigsberger Dichtergruppe
- ^ Project Gutenberg: Simon Dach, Sonnet
- ^ Project Gutenberg: Simon Dach, Lied der Freundschaft
- Evangelical Lutheran Hymnary Handbook, Biographies and Sources
- Alexander J. Birt: Simon Dach. GrÃ¤fe & Unzer, KÃ¶nigsberg i.P. 1905.
- Bruno Nick: Das NaturgefÃ¼hl bei Simon Dach. - Greifswald, Univ. Diss., 1911.
- August Gebauer (Hrsg.): Simon Dach und seine Freunde als Kirchenlieddichter. Osiander, TÃ¼bingen 1828.
- Heinrich Stiehler: Simon Dach. Hartung, KÃ¶nigsberg i.P., 1896.
- Hermann Ãsterley: Simon Dach; TÃ¼bingen 1876.
- Alfred Kelletat (Hrsg.): Simon Dach und der KÃ¶nigsberger Dichterkreis. Stuttgart: Reclam 1986. ISBN 3-15-008281-1
- Alfred Kelletat: Simon Dach und der KÃ¶nigsberger Dichterkreis, P. Reclam jun., 1986, ISBN 3-15-008281-1
- Barbara Sturzenegger: Simon Dach und Paul Fleming: Topoi der Freundschaft im 17. Jahrhundert. Diss. Bern 1996.
- Hermann Oesterley (1876), "Dach, Simon", Allgemeine Deutsche Biographie (ADB) (in German) 4, Leipzig: Duncker & Humblot, pp.Â 685â"688Â
- Axel E. Walter (Hrsg.), Simon Dach (1605-1659). Berlin, de Gruyter, 2008.
- Willi Flemming (1957), "Dach, Simon", Neue Deutsche Biographie (NDB) (in German) 3, Berlin: Duncker & Humblot, p.Â 464Â
- Friedrich Wilhelm Bautz (1975). "Dach, Simon". In Bautz, Friedrich Wilhelm. Biographisch-Bibliographisches Kirchenlexikon (BBKL) (in German) 1. Hamm: Bautz. cols. 1189â"1191. ISBNÂ 3-88309-013-1.Â
- BÃ¼cher von und Ã¼ber Simon Dach bei der Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin
- Encyclopaedia Britannica Simon Dach
- Werke von Simon Dach als Online-Texte im Projekt Gutenberg-DE (mit EinfÃ¼hrung)
- Kurzbiographie und Texte
This article uses material from the 1911 EncyclopÃ¦dia Britannica