O Day of Rest and Gladness

Full Text

1 O day of rest and gladness,
O day of joy and light,
O balm of care and sadness,
Most beautiful, most bright;
On thee the high and lowly,
Before th'eternal throne,
Sing, "Holy, holy, holy,"
To the great Three in One.

2 On thee at the Creation
The light first had its birth;
On thee for our salvation
Christ rose from depth of earth;
On thee our Lord victorious
The Spirit sent from heav'n;
And thus on thee, most glorious,
A three-fold light was giv'n.

3 Thou art a cooling fountain
In life's dry, dreary sand;
From thee, like Nebo's mountain,
We view our Promised Land;
A day of sweet reflection,
A day of holy love,
A day of resurrection
From earth to things above.

4 Today on weary nations
The heav'nly manna falls;
To holy convocations
The silver trumpet calls,
Where Gospel-light is glowing
With pure and radiant beams
And living water flowing
With soul-refreshing streams.

5 New graces ever gaining
From this our day of rest,
We reach the rest remaining
To spirits of the blest.
To Holy Ghost be praises,
To Father, and to Son;
The Church her voice upraises
To Thee, blest Three in One.

Source: Evangelical Lutheran Hymnary #485

Author: Christopher Wordsworth

Christopher Wordsworth--nephew of the great lake-poet, William Wordsworth--was born in 1807. He was educated at Winchester, and at Trinity College, Cambridge, where he graduated B.A., with high honours, in 1830; M.A. in 1833; D.D. in 1839. He was elected Fellow of his College in 1830, and public orator of the University in 1836; received Priest's Orders in 1835; head master of Harrow School in 1836; Canon of Westminster Abbey in 1844; Hulsean Lecturer at Cambridge in 1847-48; Vicar of Stanford-in-the-Vale, Berks, in 1850; Archdeacon of Westminster, in 1865; Bishop of Lincoln, in 1868. His writings are numerous, and some of them very valuable. Most of his works are in prose. His "Holy Year; or, Hymns for Sundays, Holidays, and other occ… Go to person page >


O day of rest and gladness. Bishop C. Wordsworth, of Lincoln. [Sunday.] This is the opening hymn of his Holy Year, 1862, p. i., in 6 stanzas of 8 lines. It is a fine hymn, somewhat in the style of an Ode from a Greek Canon, and is in extensive use. Sometimes stanzas v. and vi. are given as a separate hymn, beginning, "To day on weary nations." In the 3rd edition of the Holy Year, 1863, the full hymn was given as No. 3. In the 1874 Supplement to the New Congregational Hymn Book, it is reduced to 4 stanzas of 8 lines, and is also somewhat altered.

--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)



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