- Walter Blankenburg
Countess of Erbach (b Arolsen, Aug 8, 1640; d Cuylenburg [now Culemborg], Jan 4, 1697). German poet and composer. She was the daughter of Count Philipp Theodor von Waldeck; her mother was born Countess of Nassau. She appears to have spent her youth at Arolsen, the seat of the Waldeck family. In 1664 she married Count Georg Ludwig von Erbach, and then settled at Michelstadt, near Erbach, Odenwald. She was typical of the numerous princesses of the years around 1700 who inclined to Pietism and gave expression to it in verse. She published Andächtige Sing-Lust, das ist i. Morgen-, ii. Abend-, iii. Tage-, iv. Beth-, v. Buss-, vi. Klag- und Trost-, vii. Lob- und Dank-, viii. Lehrlieder (Hildburghausen, 1692). The place of publication is explained by its being the residence of one of her sisters, who was the wife of the Duke Ernst of Saxe-Hildburghausen and to whom she dedicated her book. It is therefore possible that it was written under Middle German influence. Moreover, the Princesses of Reuss and Schwarzburg, who lived nearby, were ardent disciples of Pietism. Amalia Catharina's publication is a collection of songs for household devotion. It contains 67 poems, some of which are provided with melodies with figured bass. This music (which is not given by Zahn) is certainly by Amalia Catharina herself and is an important contribution to the development of the German sacred continuo song....