Scripture Verse

The Lord Jesus the same night in which He was betrayed took bread. 1 Corinthians 11:23

Introduction

portrait
Edward Caswall
(1814–1878)
© National Portrait Gallery

Words: Tho­mas Aqui­nas, 13th Cen­tu­ry (Pan­ge lin­gua glor­i­o­si cor­por­is mys­ter­i­um). Trans­lat­ed from La­tin to Eng­lish by Ed­ward Cas­wall & the com­pil­ers of Hymns An­cient and Mo­dern, 1861 (re­vised 1875, alt).

Music: Graf­ton Chants Or­di­naires de l’Of­fice Di­vin (Pa­ris, 1881) (🔊 pdf nwc).

Alternate Tunes:

portrait
Thomas Aquinas
(1226–1274)

Lyrics

Now, my tongue, the mystery telling,
Of the glorious body sing,
And the blood, all price excelling,
Which all mankind’s Lord and king,
In a virgin’s womb once dwelling,
Shed for this world’s ransoming.

Given for us and condescending
To be born for us below,
He, with men in converse blending,
Dwelt the seed of truth to sow,
Till He closed with wondrous ending
His most patient life below.

That last night, at supper lying
’Mid the twelve, His chosen band,
Jesus, with the law complying,
Keeps the feast its rites demand;
Then, more precious food supplying,
Gives Himself with His own hand.

Word made flesh, true bread He maketh
By His word His flesh to be;
Wine His blood: which whoso taketh
Must from carnal thoughts be free;
Faith alone, though sight forsaketh
Shows true hearts the mystery.

Therefore we, before Him bending,
This great sacrament revere;
Types and shadows have their ending,
For the newer rite is here;
Faith, our outward sense befriending,
Makes our inward vision clear.

Glory let us give, and blessing,
To the Father and the Son;
Honor, might and praise addressing
While eternal ages run,
Ever, too, His love confessing,
Who from both with both is One.