Sunday 23 February 2020

Quinquagesima or Estomihi

Today is Quinquagesima or Estomihi or Shrove Sunday. Quinquagesima because we are 50 days before Easter, Estomihi refers to the opening verse of the Introit for the day, Psalm 31:3: "Esto mihi in Deum protectorem". Bach has four cantatas for you, all from the Leipzig period. Philippe Herreweghe and the Collegium Vocale recorded these cantatas on one CD, so as an exception I've chosen only one performer today.

Important to note as well is that the first two cantatas, BWV 22 and BWV23 are the audition pieces Bach composed for the position of Thomas cantor in Leipzig. He came to Leipzig early February 1723, performed both cantatas on Estomihi and left the city to travel back to Köthen, convinced he would not get the position. He does receive the commission and settles in Leipzig on May 30th.


  • Jesus nahm zu sich die Zwölfe, BWV 22
    (first performance 7 February 1723, Leipzig period)
  • Du wahrer Gott und Davids Sohn, BWV 23
    (first performance 7 February 1723, Leipzig period)
  • Herr Jesu Christ, wahr' Mensch und Gott, BWV 127
    (first performance 11 February 1725, Leipzig period)
  • Sehet, wir gehn hinauf gen Jerusalem, BWV 159
    (first performance ? 27 February 1729, Leipzig period)

Extra information

The Netherlands Bach Society website (in Dutch) has more information and performances of BWV 22, 23 and 159: