Hark! The Herald Angels Sing

The lyrics of ‘Hark! The Herald Angels Sing’ were written by Charles Wesley in 1739. It was originally titled “Hymn for Christmas-Day,”; Wesley commissioned slow and solemn music to accompany his text. When reprinted in 1754 and 1783, the lyrics were subtly changed so the opening line was different, and “Hark! the Herald Angels sing/ Glory to the newborn king” was repeated at the end of each verse.

More than 100 years later, the composer Mendelssohn composed a work entitled ‘Festgesang’ to commemorate the invention of the printing press by Johann Gutenberg. In 1855, William Cummings adapted this (totally non-religious work) ‘Festgesang’ to fit the lyrics of ‘Hark! The Herald Angels Sing’. It’s this arrangement that has become the most well-known version of the song.

Bainigí taitneamh as!

Hark! The herald-angels sing
“Glory to the newborn king;
Peace on earth and mercy mild,
God and sinners reconciled”
Joyful all ye nations rise,
Join the triumph of the skies
With the angelic host proclaim
“Christ is born in Bethlehem”
Hark! The herald-angels sing
“Glory to the new-born king”

Christ, by highest heaven adored
Christ, the everlasting Lord,
Late in time behold Him come
Offspring of a Virgin’s womb:
Veiled in flesh the Godhead see,
Hail the incarnate Deity
Pleased as man with man to dwell
Jesus, our Emmanuel
Hark! The herald-angels sing
“Glory to the newborn King”

Hail the Heaven-born Prince of Peace!
Hail the Sun of Righteousness![a]
Light and life to all He brings,
Risen with healing in His wings;
Mild He lays His glory by
Born that man no more may die
Born to raise the sons of earth
Born to give them second birth
Hark! The herald angels sing
“Glory to the new-born king”

“Hark! The Herald Angels Sing – Wikipedia”. 2022. En.Wikipedia.Org. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hark!_The_Herald_Angels_Sing.