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Lord, have mercy when we pray

Representative Text

Lord, have mercy when we pray
Strength to seek a better way;
When our wakening thoughts begin
First to loathe their cherished sin;
When our weary spirits fail,
And our aching brows are pale;
Then Thy strengthening grace afford;
Then, O, then, have mercy, Lord!

Lord, have mercy when we know
First how vain this world below;
When its darker thoughts oppress,
Doubts perplex, and fears distress;
When the earliest gleam is given
Of the bright but distant heaven;
Then Thy strengthening grace afford;
Then, O, then, have mercy, Lord!

Source: A Book of Hymns for Public and Private Devotion (15th ed.) #204

Author: Henry Hart Milman

Milman, Henry Hart, D.D., the youngest son of Sir Francis Milman (who received his Baronetage as an eminent Court physician), was born Feb. 10th, 1791, and educated at Dr. Burney's at Greenwich, and subsequently at Eton. His career at B. N. C. Oxford, was brilliant. He took a first class in classics, and carried off the Newdigate, Latin Verse, Latin Essay, and English Essay. His Newdigate on the Apollo Belvedere, 1812, is styled by Dean Stanley "the most perfect of Oxford prize poems." His literary career for several years promised to be poetical. His tragedy Fazio was played at Covent Garden, Miss O'Neill acting Bianca. Samor was written in the year of his appointment to St. Mary's, Reading (1817); The Fall of Jerusalem (1820); Belshazzar… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: Lord, have mercy when we pray
Author: Henry Hart Milman
Copyright: Public Domain


Lord, have mercy when we [pray] strive. H. H. Milman. [Lent.] First published in Bishop Heber's posthumous Hymns, &c, 1827, p. 94, in 3 stanzas of 8 lines, with the refrain "Oh then, have mercy! Lord I" and repeated in the author's Psalms & Hymns, 1837. In addition to its use in its original form, it is also given in several collections as “Lord, have mercy when we pray" as in the People's Hymnal, 1867; and, with stanzas ii. and iii. transposed, in the 1869 Appendix to the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge Psalms & Hymns Because of its refrain it is sometimes regarded as a Metrical Litany.

--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)



The Cyber Hymnal #12070
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The Cyber Hymnal #12070

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