Scripture Verse

A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of Thy people Israel. Luke 2:32


William B. Collyer (1782–1854)

Words: Will­iam B. Coll­yer, Hymns Part­ly Col­lect­ed and Part­ly Orig­in­al (Lon­don: 1812), num­ber 966.

Music: Hurs­ley Ka­thol­isch­es Ge­sang­buch (Vi­en­na, 1774). Adapt­ed from the Me­tri­cal Psal­ter, 1855 (🔊 pdf nwc).


The dawn­ing day at length ap­pears,
The day fore­told by an­cient seers;
And over na­ture’s gloo­my night
Prevails the morn­ing’s ris­ing light.

The na­tions watch the pro­mised ray,
Whose blush­es kin­dle in­to day,
And see, with ea­ger, anx­ious eye,
Its saf­fron tint spread ov­er the sky.

He comes! He comes! the Sun ap­pears,
Eclipsing rea­son’s dark­ened spheres!
He shines above the east­ern hills,
And ev­ery heart with trans­port fills!

While In­dia’s sons, adorned with gold,
The source of light and life be­hold;
Released from su­per­sti­tion’s chains,
No bloody rite their al­tars stains.

The sun up­on the Per­sian’s head,
His scorch­ing rays no more shall shed;
Burning amid un­cloud­ed skies,
He sees a fair­er orb arise.

Behold the na­tions wait Thy light,
To scat­ter their re­main­ing night;
To ev­ery clime ex­tend Thy ray,
O source of ev­er­last­ing day!