The winged herald of the day

Full Text

1 The wingéd herald of the day
Proclaims the morn's approaching ray:
So Christ the Lord renews His call,
To endless life awakening all.

2 "Take up thy bed," to each he cries,
Who sick, or wrapp'd in slumber, lies:
"Be chaste, and, living soberly,
Watch ye, for I the Lord am nigh."

3 With earnest cry, with tearful care,
Call we the Lord to hear our prayer;
While supplication, pure and deep,
Forbids each chastened heart to sleep.

4 O Father, that we ask be done,
Through Jesus Christ,Thine only Son;
Who, with the Holy ghost and Thee,
Shall live and reign eternally.

Hymnal: according to the use of the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of America, 1871

Author: Aurelius Clemens Prudentius

Marcus Aurelius Clemens Prudentius, "The Christian Pindar" was born in northern Spain, a magistrate whose religious convictions came late in life. His subsequent sacred poems were literary and personal, not, like those of St. Ambrose, designed for singing. Selections from them soon entered the Mozarabic rite, however, and have since remained exquisite treasures of the Western churches. His Cathemerinon liber, Peristephanon, and Psychomachia were among the most widely read books of the Middle Ages. A concordance to his works was published by the Medieval Academy of America in 1932. There is a considerable literature on his works. --The Hymnal 1940 Companion… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: The winged herald of the day
Author: Aurelius Clemens Prudentius
Language: English


Ales diei nuntius. A. C. Prudentius. [Tuesday Morning.] This hymn is No. 1 in the Cathemerinon of Prudentius, and is in 25 stanzas of 4 lines. The cento in use is composed of stanza i., ii, xxi., xxv. of the poem, and will be found in Daniel, i., No. 103; additional notes, ii. p. 382 ; iv. p. 39. In the Roman Brevieary it is the hymn for Tuesday at Lauds. Also in the Hymnarium Sarisburiense, London 1851, pp. 47, 48; which contains, besides the Sarum text, variations from the York Use; and among different readings from Monastic Uses, those of Sts. Alban's, Evesham, Worcester, St. Andrew de Bromholm (Norfolk). It is also in the Aberdeen Breviary and others.

The text of this cento is also found in three manuscripts of the 11th century in the British Museum; in the Latin Hys. of the Anglo-Saxon Church, 1851, p. 18, it is printed from a Durham manuscript of the 11th century; in Macgill's Songs of the Christian Creed and Life, 1876 and 1879 ; and others. [Rev.W. A. Shoults, B.D.]
Translations common use:—

2. The winged herald of the day. By J. M. Neale. First published in the enlarged edition (First edition 1852) of the hymnal noted, 1854, No. 19, and continued in later editions. This translation also from the Sarum text.

--Excerpts from John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology



William Knapp (b. Wareham, Dorsetshire, England, 1698; d. Poole, Dorsetshire, 1768) composed WAREHAM, so named for his birthplace. A glover by trade, Knapp served as the parish clerk at St. James's Church in Poole (1729-1768) and was organist in both Wareham and Poole. Known in his time as the "coun…

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