JUDAS MACCABEUS

Composer: George Frederick Handel

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Tune Information

Composer: George Frederick Handel (1748)
Meter: 5.5.6.5.6.5.6.5 with refrain
Incipit: 53451 23454 32345
Key: D Major

Notes

JUDAS MACCABEUS is an arrangement of a tune from the chorus "See, the Conquering Hero Comes" in Handel's oratorio Judas Maccabeus (first performed without this chorus in 1746). Handel initially used the tune in his oratorio Joshua (1747) but transferred it to Judas Maccabeus in 1751; such changes were common in Handel's operas and oratorios. Handel is reported to have said to a friend, "you will live to see it [the tune] a greater favorite with the people than my other finer things."

The tune's first appearance in a hymnal was probably in Thomas Butts's Harmonia Sacra (around 1760) where it was set to Charles Wesley's "Christ the Lord Is Risen Today" (388). This melody, also known as MACCABEUS, is the setting for Edmond Budry's Easter text "A toi la gloire" ("Thine Be the Glory") in a number of modern hymnals.

Including the refrain, JUDAS MACCABEUS is cast in a rounded bar form (AABA). Sing in unison or in parts. This tune merits the use of trumpets or a brass ensemble in addition to festive, crisp articulation of organ tones.

Georg Friederich Handel (b. Halle, Germany, 1685; d. London, England, 1759) became a musician and composer despite objections from his father, who wanted him to become a lawyer. Handel studied music with Zachau, organist at the Halle Cathedral, and became an accomplished violinist and keyboard performer. He traveled and studied in Italy for some time and then settled permanently in England in 1713. Although he wrote a large number of instrumental works, he is known mainly for his Italian operas, oratorios (including Messiah, 1741), various anthems for church and royal festivities, and organ concertos, which he interpolated into his oratorio performances. He composed only three hymn tunes, one of which (GOPSAL) still appears in some modern hymnals. A number of hymnal editors, including Lowell Mason (PHH 96), took themes from some of Handel's oratorios and turned them into hymn tunes (see ANTIOCH, 337).

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook

Media

Christian Classics Ethereal Hymnary #1050
  • Four-part harmony, full-score (PDF, NWC)
The Cyber Hymnal #1758
Text: Great God and Saviour
  • Adobe Acrobat image (PDF)
  • Noteworthy Composer score (NWC)
  • XML score (XML)
The Cyber Hymnal #6635
Text: Thine Is the Glory
  • Adobe Acrobat image (PDF)
  • Noteworthy Composer score (NWC)
  • XML score (XML)
Worship and Rejoice #310
Text: Thine Is the Glory

Instances

Instances (28)TextImageAudioScoreFlexscore
Baptist Hymnal 1991 #163TextImageAudio
Baptist Hymnal 2008 #138TextImage
Celebrating Grace Hymnal #222Image
Chalice Hymnal #218Text
Christian Classics Ethereal Hymnary #1050AudioScore
Church Hymnary (4th ed.) #419Text
Common Praise (1998) #210Text
Evangelical Lutheran Hymnary #73Text
Evangelical Lutheran Worship #376Image
Glory to God: the Presbyterian Hymnal #238TextImageAudioFlexscore
Les Chants du Pèlerin #194
Lift Up Your Hearts: psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs #187ImageAudioFlexscore
Presbyterian Hymnal: hymns, psalms, and spiritual songs #122TextImage
Psalter Hymnal (Gray) #582TextImageAudio
Rejoice in the Lord #327Text
Revival Hymns and Choruses #205
Seventh-day Adventist Hymnal #171
Sing Joyfully #281TextImage
The Christian Life Hymnal #188
The Covenant Hymnal: a worshipbook #243
The Hymnal for Worship and Celebration #227
The New Century Hymnal #253Image
The United Methodist Hymnal #308TextImage
The Worshiping Church #251TextImage
Trinity Hymnal (Rev. ed.) #274TextImage
Voices United: The Hymn and Worship Book of The United Church of Canada #173Text
Worship and Rejoice #310TextImageAudioScore
Worship in Song: A Friends Hymnal #14



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