The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

The Eternal Speaks, All Heaven Attends

For Christmas

A Carol, 1750

Words: Unknown

Music: "The Counsels of Grace"

Source: William Knapp, ed., New Church Melody. 4th Edition. (London: R. Baldwin, S. Crowder, 1761) , pp. 164-167.

1. Th' Eternal speaks, all Heaven attends.
"Who that unhappy race defends,
    While Justice aims the blow.
See Nature trembles at their Fates;
Death with his Iron Sceptre waits;
Hell opes her Adamantine Gates
    And triumphs at their Woe.

See Nature trembles at their Fates;
Death with his Iron Sceptre waits;
    Hell opes her Adamantine Gates
And triumphs at their Woe.

2. "Which of the bright Celestial throng,
With Love so warm and heart so strong,
    Dares Languish on a Cross?
Who can leave Liberty for Chains,
Abandon Ecstasy for Pains,
What Angel's fortitude sustains,
    Thine estimable Loss."

Who can leave Liberty for Chains,
Abandon Ecstasy for Pains,
What Angel's fortitude sustains,
    Thine estimable Loss.

3. He said - and Deathlike Silence Reign'd;
Deep was their awe; the radiant band,
    The mighty Task declin'd .
At length Heavn's Prince the silence broke,
And Ardent, thus, the Sire bespoke,
    "None but thy Son can ward the stroke;
    Then let the task be mine.

At length Heavn's Prince the silence broke,
And Ardent, thus, the Sire bespoke,
    "None but thy Son can ward the stroke;
    Then let the task be mine.

4. "Mine, be the feeble Infant State;
Mine, in return for Love, be hate;
    A Manger be my Throne.
Pain, when thy Glory calls is bliss;
When Mans in danger Tortures Peace,
Shame praise, a Paradise th' Abyss:
    Then yield thy darling Son."

Pain, when thy Glory calls is bliss;
When Mans in danger Tortures Peace,
Shame praise, a Paradise th' Abyss:
    Then yield thy darling Son.

5. Th 'Almighty radiance smil'd Assent,
Loud was the shout that Ęther rent.
    All Heavn was in amaze.
"Go my Lov'd Image, said the Sire,
Be born, in anguish to expire;
Earth triumph; Angels strike the Lyre
    To Everlasting Praise."

"Go my Lov'd Image, said the Sire,
Be born, in anguish to expire;
Earth triumph; Angels strike the Lyre
    To Everlasting Praise."

Sheet Music From William Knapp, ed., New Church Melody. 4th Edition. (London: R. Baldwin, S. Crowder, 1761), pp. 164-167.

The_Eternal-Knapp-4th-1761-pp164-165.jpg (135059 bytes)

The_Eternal-Knapp-4th-1761-pp166-167.jpg (136249 bytes)

Sheet Music from William Billings, The Psalm-singer's Amusement: Containing a Number of Fuging pieces and Anthems. (Boston, 1781), pp. 22-23.

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Additional settings can be found at ChoralWiki (CPDL):

Note.

In the text, Knapp indicated a repeat of the last four lines as a chorus by adding only the first two or three words of the fourth line followed by "&c." I found this very confusing, so have taken the liberty of repeating the four lines entirely.

As Knapp Gave It:

5. Th 'Almighty radiance smil'd Assent,
Loud was the shout that Ęther rent.
    All Heavn was in amaze.
Go my Lov'd Image, said the Sire,
Be born, in anguish to expire;
Earth triumph; Angels strike the Lyre
    To Everlasting Praise.

Go my Lov'd Image &c

 As Given Here:

5. Th 'Almighty radiance smil'd Assent,
Loud was the shout that Ęther rent.
    All Heavn was in amaze.
Go my Lov'd Image, said the Sire,
Be born, in anguish to expire;
Earth triumph; Angels strike the Lyre
    To Everlasting Praise.

Go my Lov'd Image, said the Sire,
Be born, in anguish to expire;
Earth triumph; Angels strike the Lyre
    To Everlasting Praise.

I have added quotation marks to clarify the lines that were spoken in the lyrics; comparison was made to the text in other volumes. This poem was reprinted a number of times between 1774 and 1828.

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