1 Day of anger, that dread day
Shall the sign in Heav’n display,
And the earth in ashes lay.
O what trembling shall appear,
When His coming shall be near,
Who shall all things strictly clear!
When the trumpet shall command,
Through the tombs of every land,
All before the throne to stand!
2 Death shall shrink and nature quake,
When all creatures shall awake,
Answer to their Judge to make.
See the Book divinely penned,
In which all is found contained,
Whence the world shall be arraigned!
When the Judge is on His throne,
All that’s hidden shall be shown,
Naught unpunished or unknown!
3 What shall I before Him say?
How shall I be safe that day,
When the righteous scarcely may?
King of awful majesty,
Saving sinners graciously,
Fount of mercy, save Thou me!
Leave me not, my Savior! one
For whose soul Thy course was run,
Lest I be that day undone.
Alford, Henry, D.D., son of the Rev. Henry Alford, Rector of Aston Sandford, b. at 25 Alfred Place, Bedford Row, London, Oct. 7, 1810, and educated at Trinity College, Cambridge, graduating in honours, in 1832. In 1833 he was ordained to the Curacy of Ampton. Subsequently he held the Vicarage of Wymeswold, 1835-1853,--the Incumbency of Quebec Chapel, London, 1853-1857; and the Deanery of Canterbury, 1857 to his death, which took. place at Canterbury, Jan. 12, 1871. In addition he held several important appointments, including that of a Fellow of Trinity, and the Hulsean Lectureship, 1841-2. His literary labours extended to every department of literature, but his noblest undertaking was his edition of the Greek Testament, the result… Go to person page >
Day of anger, that dread day. By H. Alford, from the Paris Missal. The opening stanza of this translation [of Dies irae, dies illa] is:—
”Day of anger, that dread day
Shall the sign in Heav'n display,
And the earth in ashes lay."
It appeared in his Psalms & Hymns, 1844, in two parts, the second beginning, "Thou didst toil my soul to gain"; and was repeated in his Year of Praise, 1867. In Windle's Hymnal, No. 83, there is given a cento from this translation into which many alterations are introduced, and a refrain is added to each stanza which is altogether new to the hymn. The cento in the Marlborough School Collection, 1869, No. 49, beginning with the first line from I. Williams, is from this translation but greatly altered. Dean Alford's translation is also given in a few American hymn-books.
--Excerpts from John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)
Display Title: Day Of Anger, That Dread DayFirst Line: Day of anger, that dread dayTune Title: ST. SAVIOURAuthor: Henry AlfordMeter: 188.8.131.52.7Source: Psalms and Hymns Adapted to the Sundays and Holydays Throughout the Year (London: Francis & John Rivington, 1844)