LOVE UNKNOWN

Composer: John Ireland

John Ireland (1879-1962) was born in Bowdon, Cheshire, and educated at the Royal College of Music (1893-1901). The first four years there he spent studying piano. The remaining time he studied with Charles Villiers Stanford. He became a fellow of the Royal College of Organists in 1895 and in 1905 received his Bachelor of Music degree from Durham University. He was awarded an honorary doctorate from Durham (1932), RAM and FRCM. Ireland was organist at St. Luke’s Church, Chelsea (1904-1926), and taught composition at the Royal College of Music (1923-1939). His published works span fifty years beginning with two string quartets. He composed also for orchestra, choir, solo voice, and piano. His last work was the music score for the… Go to person page >

Tune Information

Composer: John Ireland (1918)
Meter: 6.6.6.6.4.4.4.4
Incipit: 35632 12345 36676
Key: D Major
Copyright: © 1924 Trustees of the John Ireland Charitable Trust

Notes

John Ireland (b. Bowdon, Cheshire, England, 1879; d. Rock Mill, Washington, Sussex, England, 1962) composed LOVE UNKNOWN in 1918 for the text "My song is love unknown"; the tune was first published in The Public School Hymn Book of 1919. A letter in the London Daily Telegraph of April 5, 1950, claims that Ireland wrote LOVE UNKNOWN within fifteen minutes on a scrap of paper upon receiving the request to compose it from Geoffrey Shaw, one of the editors of that 1919 hymnal. LOVE UNKNOWN has since appeared in many hymnals as a setting for a number of different texts.

Trained at the Royal College of Music, Ireland served as organist at St. Luke's, Chelsea (1904-1926), and taught at the Royal College of Music from 1923 to 1939. He became known as one of the best composers and teachers of his era, but his personal life was often troubled. Although his piano works, chamber music, and smaller orchestral works remain popular, Ireland is mainly remembered for his song cycles of poetry by Shakespeare, Blake, Hardy, and other English poets. His songs often have carefully wrought accompaniments–as is certainly the case for LOVE UNKNOWN. Sing this fine tune in unison with firm legato organ support, or in harmony, possibly even unaccompanied on a stanza, if resources permit.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook, 1987

Instances

Instances (1 - 42 of 42)Text InfoTune InfoTextScoreFlexScoreAudioPage Scan
A New Hymnal for Colleges and Schools #31
Ancient and Modern: hymns and songs for refreshing worship #147Text
Ancient and Modern: hymns and songs for refreshing worship #321Text
Ancient and Modern: hymns and songs for refreshing worship #487Text
Christian Worship: a Lutheran hymnal #110Text
Church Hymnary (4th ed.) #238Text
Church Hymnary (4th ed.) #399Text
Church Hymnary (4th ed.) #698Text
Common Praise (1998) #184Text
Common Praise: A new edition of Hymns Ancient and Modern #112
Common Praise: A new edition of Hymns Ancient and Modern #236b
Complete Anglican Hymns Old and New #209
Complete Anglican Hymns Old and New #463
Evangelical Lutheran Worship #343Text
Evangelical Lutheran Worship #791
Glory to God: the Presbyterian Hymnal #209Text InfoTextAudio
Hymnal 1982: according to the use of the Episcopal Church #458Text
Hymnal: A Worship Book #235
Hymns for Today's Church (2nd ed.) #136
Hymns of the Saints: Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints #202
Hymns Old and New (Rev. and Enl.) #230
Hymns Old and New (Rev. and Enl.) #521
Hymns Old and New (Rev. and Enl.) #764
Lift Up Your Hearts: psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs #315Text
Lift Up Your Hearts: psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs #851Audio
Lutheran Service Book #430Text
Lutheran Worship #91Text
Moravian Book of Worship #482Text
Presbyterian Hymnal: hymns, psalms, and spiritual songs #76Text
Presbyterian Hymnal: hymns, psalms, and spiritual songs #515TextPage Scan
Psalter Hymnal (Gray) #220Text InfoTune InfoAudio
Rejoice in the Lord #284TextPage Scan
Seventh-day Adventist Hymnal #188
Singing the Faith #277
Singing the New Testament #32
The New English Hymnal #86Text
Together in Song: Australian hymn book II #341
Voices United: The Hymn and Worship Book of The United Church of Canada #143Text
Voices United: The Hymn and Worship Book of The United Church of Canada #456Text
With One Voice #661Text
Worship (3rd ed.) #439Text
Worship (4th ed.) #490
Include 6 pre-1979 instances



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