O would, my God, that I could praise Thee

Representative Text

1 O would, my God, that I could praise Thee
With thousand tongues by day and night!
How many a song my lips should raise Thee,
Who order'st all things here aright!
My thankful heart would ever be
Telling what God hath done for me.

2 O all ye powers that He implanted,
Arise, keep silence thus no more;
Put forth the strength that He hath granted,
Your noblest work is to adore;
O soul and body, make ye meet
With heartfelt praise your Lord to greet.

3 O Father, deign Thou, I beseech Thee,
To listen to my earthly lays;
A nobler strain in heaven shall reach Thee,
When I with angels hymn Thy praise,
And learn amid their choirs to sing
Loud hallelujahs to my King.


Source: The Hymnal and Order of Service #178

Translator: Catherine Winkworth

Catherine Winkworth is "the most gifted translator of any foreign sacred lyrics into our tongue, after Dr. Neale and John Wesley; and in practical services rendered, taking quality with quantity, the first of those who have laboured upon German hymns. Our knowledge of them is due to her more largely than to any or all other translators; and by her two series of Lyra Germanica, her Chorale Book, and her Christian Singers of Germany, she has laid all English-speaking Christians under lasting obligation." --Annotations of the Hymnal, Charles Hutchins, M.A., 1872… Go to person page >

Author: Johann Mentzer

Mentzer, Johann, was born July 27, 1658, at Jahmen, near Rothenburg, in Silesia, and became a student of theology at Wittenberg, In 1691 he was appointed pastor at Merzdorf; in 1693 at Hauswalde, near Bischofswerda; and in 1696 at Kemnitz, near Bernstadt, Saxony. He died at Kemnitz, Feb. 24, 1734 (G. F. Otto's Lexicon . . . Oberlausizischer Schriftsteller, ii., 581; ms. from Pastor Richter of Kemnitz, &c). He was a great friend of J. C. Schwedler, of Henrietta Catherine von Gersdorf, and of N. L. von Zinzendorf, all hymnwriters, and all his near neighbours. He was himself greatly tried in the furnace of affliction. He wrote a large number of hymns, over 30 of which appeared in the various hymnbooks of his time. Many of them, especially t… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: O would, my God, that I could praise Thee
Translator: Catherine Winkworth
Author: Johann Mentzer



Johann Balthaser König (b. Waltershausen, near Gotha, Germany, 1691; d. Frankfurt, Germany, 1758) composed this tune, which later became associated with Johann Mentzer's hymn "O dass ich tausend Zungen hätte" (Oh, That I Had a Thousand Voices). The harmonization is from the Wurttembergische Choral…

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Instances (1 - 14 of 14)
TextPage Scan

Chorale Book for England, The #5

Tune InfoPage Scan

Hymnal and Liturgies of the Moravian Church #3

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Offices of Worship and Hymns: with tunes, 3rd ed., revised and enlarged #697

Songs and Hymns for Children's Voices #d26

Songs of Devotion #d14

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The Evangelical Hymnal with Tunes #108

TextPage Scan

The Hymnal and Order of Service #178


The Hymnal and Order of Service #178

The Hymnal of the Evangelical Lutheran Augustana Synod. Text ed. #d452

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The Liturgy and the Office of Worship and Hymns of the American Province of the Unitas Fratrum, or the Moravian Church #697

TextPage Scan

The Lutheran Hymnary #443

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The New Alleluia: a collection of hymns and tunes for the Church School, and the mid-week meeting #207b

TextPage Scan

Wartburg Hymnal: for church, school and home #329

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