|Composer:||Rowland H. Prichard (1830)|
|Incipit:||12123 43212 54332|
Come, thou long expected Jesus,
born to set thy people free;
from our fears and sins release us,
let us find our rest in thee.
Israel's strength and consolation,
hope of all the earth thou art;
dear desire of every nation,
joy of every longing heart.
One of the most loved Welsh tunes, HYFRYDOL was composed by Rowland Hugh Prichard (b. Graienyn, near Bala, Merionetshire, Wales, 1811; d. Holywell, Flintshire, Wales, 1887) in 1830 when he was only nineteen. It was published with about forty of his other tunes in his children's hymnal Cyfaill y Cantorion (The Singers' Friend) in 1844.
Prichard (sometimes spelled Pritchard) was a textile worker and an amateur musician. He had a good singing voice and was appointed precentor in Graienyn. Many of his tunes were published in Welsh periodicals. In 1880 Prichard became a loom tender's assistant at the Welsh Flannel Manufacturing Company in Holywell.
HYFRYDOL (Welsh for "tuneful" or "pleasant") is often set to Charles Wesley's "Love Divine, All Loves Excelling" (568) and William C. Dix's "Alleluia! Sing to Jesus" (406). More recently the tune has appeared in several hymnals with Bliss's text.
A simple bar form (AAB) tune with the narrow range of a sixth, HYFRYDOL builds to a stunning climax by sequential use of melodic motives. Sing in unison or harmony, and observe one pulse per measure.
--Psalter Hymnal Handbook, 1987