Gottfried August Homilius (1714 – 1785) was a German composer, cantor and organist. He is considered one of the most important church composers of the generation following Bach's, and was the main representative of the empfindsamer style. He was born in Rosenthal, Saxony, the son of a Lutheran pastor, and was educated at the Annenschule in Dresden. He then studied law at Leipzig University and the organ under Johann Sebastian Bach. From 1742 he was organist at the Dresden Frauenkirche, and from 1755 until his death cantor at the Kreuzkirche in Dresden with the associated responsibility of music director at the Kreuzkirche, the Sophienkirche, and the Frauenkirche.
Homilius predominantly composed church music: more than 10 passions (one printed in 1775; his St. Matthew Passion, particularly outstanding in the preclassical style of C.P.E. Bach and an extremely worthy successor of J.S. Bach's best-known work of the same name, an oratorio for Christmas (1777) and one for Easter, over 60 motets, more than 150 cantatas (six arias from these appeared in 1786), chorales, preludes, and choral works.
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