Scripture Verse

It came to pass that night, that the angel of the Lord went out, and smote in the camp of the Assyrians an hundred fourscore and five thousand: and when they arose early in the morning, behold, they were all dead corpses. 2 Kings 19:35


Karl P. Harrington (1861–1953)

Words: Ar­ranged from George Gor­don, Lord By­ron, He­brew Me­lo­dies, 1815. Also see In Ju­dah God of Old Was Known.

Music: Christ­mas Song Karl P. Har­ring­ton, 1904 (🔊 pdf nwc).

Alternate Tune:

Lord Byron (1788–1824)


Destruction of Sennacherib’s Host
Gustave Doré (1832–1883)

The As­sy­ri­an came down
Like a wolf on the fold,
With his cohorts a-gleam­ing
In pur­ple and gold;
And the sheen of their spears
Was like stars on the sea,
When the blue wave rolls night­ly
On deep Ga­li­lee.

Like the leaves of the for­est
When sum­mer is green,
All the host with its ban­ners
At sun­set was seen:
Like the leaves of the for­est
When au­tumn hath blown,
Would the host on the mor­row
Lay wi­thered and strown.

For the An­gel of Death
Spread his wings on the blast,
And he breathed in the face
Of the foe as he passed;
And the eyes of the sleep­ers
Waxed dead­ly and chill,
And their hearts but once heaved,
And for ev­er grew still!

On the ground lay the steed
With his nos­tril all wide,
But through it there rolled
Not the breath of his pride;
And the foam of his gasp­ing
Lay white on the turf,
And as cold as the spray
Of the rock-beat­ing surf.

And be­side him the rid­er,
Distorted and pale,
With the dew on his brow,
And the rust on his mail:
And the tents were all si­lent,
The ban­ners alone,
All the lanc­es un­lift­ed,
The trum­pet un­blown.

Now the wi­dows of Ash­ur
Are loud in their wail;
Lifeless id­ols are broke
In the tem­ple of Baal;
And the might of the Gen­tile,
Unsmote by the sword,
It hath melt­ed like snow
In the glance of the Lord.

The stouthearted are spoiled, they have slept their sleep: and none of the men of might have found their hands. At Thy rebuke, O God of Jacob, both the chariot and horse are cast into a dead sleep. Psalm 76:5-6