Hark, the hosts of heaven are singing

Hark, the hosts of heaven are singing

Author: Edward H. Plumptre
Tune: ST. OSWALD (Dykes 53617)
Published in 17 hymnals

Printable scores: PDF, Noteworthy Composer
Audio files: MIDI

Representative Text

1 Hark, the hosts of heav’n are singing
Praises to their new-born Lord,
Strains of sweetest music flinging,
Not a note or word unheard.

2 On this night, all nights excelling,
God’s high praises sounded forth,
As their lowly flocks they tended,
Came new tidings from the skies.

3 All the hosts of heaven are chanting
Songs with power to stir and thrill,
And the universe is panting
Joy’s deep longings to fulfill.

4 On this day then through creation
Let the glorious hymn ring out;
Let men hail the great salvation,
“God with us,” with song and shout.

Source: Gloria Deo: a Collection of Hymns and Tunes for Public Worship in all Departments of the Church #130

Author: Edward H. Plumptre

Edward H. Plumptre (b. London, England, August 6, 1821; d. Wells, England, February 1, 1891) was an eminent classical and biblical scholar who gained prominence in both church and university. Educated at King's College, London, and University College, Oxford, he was ordained in the Church of England in 1846. Plumptre served as a preacher at Oxford and a professor of pastoral theology at King's College, and held a number of other prestigious positions. His writings include A Life of Bishop Ken (1888), translations from Greek and Latin classics, and poetry and hymns. Plumptre was also a member of the committee that produced the Revised Version of the Bible. Bert Polman… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: Hark, the hosts of heaven are singing
Author: Edward H. Plumptre
Language: English
Copyright: Public Domain


Nato canunt omnia. [Christmas.] This sequence is found in the Bodleian manuscript, No. 775, written about the year 1000 (f. 139 b); in an 11th century Winchester Sequentiary, now at Corpus Christi, Cambridge (ms. No. 473); an 11th century manuscript at Munich (Lat. 14083, f. 7), &c. In the Sarum, Hereford and York Missals it is placed in the Midnight Mass ("Missa in Gallicantu") of Christmas Day. The printed text is also found in Daniel ii. p. 56, and Kehrein, No. 9. Clichtovaeus represents it as describing the joy of Christmas, announced by the angel to the shepherds, and sung by the angelic choir; and as inviting the whole human race to rejoice in God made Man. [Rev. James Mearns, M.A.]
Translations in common use:—
1, Hark, the hosts of heaven are singing. By E. H. Plumptre, made for and first published in the Hymnary, 1872. Also in a few American collections.

--Excerpts from John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)



The Cyber Hymnal #10258
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The Cyber Hymnal #10258

Include 16 pre-1979 instances
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