Canticles from Isaiah – An egg on face moment

The Flight into Egypt by Millet (1814-74) currently in the Art Institute of Chicago.

I said proudly when I posted Salvation is our strong city on 31st December last year, that that completed all the Canticles in Isaiah.  On checking through the downloadable version of Book 6 on this site and all the blogs since May 2015, I have realised I was wrong. To my great embarrassment, I have left one out. It is one that I had put into metre and linked to a tune several months ago.  I was relaxing in the delusion that I had published it.  I realise I never seem actually to have done so.

To mark how this in a continuation of the post of 31st December 2016, I have headed this post with the same picture as that one.

This is a bit soon after my last post, but having spotted the mistake, I felt I needed to put it right as soon as possible.

The missing Isaiah Canticle

The missing canticle is Isaiah 61.10-11; 62.1-3. These are consecutive verses that run over the chapter break. It is Canticle 35 in Common Worship Daily Prayer, where it is called ‘A Song of the Bride’.  This does not just comes from the simile in the second stanza.  The verses that follow on from it Is 62:4-5 continue the same theme.  Judah and the land are to be married to the LORD.  In this collection, though, it will be called I shall rejoice, my soul be glad after its first line. It is a song of  exuberant joy and is provided as the opening Canticle for Morning Prayer during the twelve days of Christmas.  If it was not that there are already plenty of good Christmas Carols, it would make an excellent one.  It has the advantage which it shares with While shepherds watched and Joy to the world of being sung scripture.

It is certainly suitable as a hymn for the Christmas season or any other festive occasion.

These are the words. They are in Common Metre.

1. I shall rejoice; my soul be glad, ~ in God, my LORD with glee.
He’s clothed me in salvation’s robes, ~ cloak of integrity,

2. As bridegroom decks himself with flowers ~ or bride with jewels is hung.
As earth erupts with blossom and ~ the seeds in garth have sprung,

3. Before the nations, God shall make ~ his righteousness and praise
Erupt and bloom in burgeoning; ~ abundant are his ways.

4. For Ziön’s sake, I’ll not keep quiet ~ nor for Jerus’lem rest,
Till like the dawn, her rescue shines ~ a torch ablaze with zest.

5. Your salvation shall nations see; ~ your glory, kings behold.
A new name shall the LORD pronounce, ~ a new name for your old.

6. You shall a crown of beauty be ~ in the hand of the LORD,
A royal diadem held close ~ by God, in his grip stored.

The tune

This lively tune, which deserves to be better known, is Gainsborough, by William Tans’ur (1699-1783) and is in F Major.  It also sometimes appears under the name of St Martin’s. It has been on the Soundcloud site for some time. It is also a suitable tune to use with other joyful Common Metre tunes.

Other possible tunes for this canticle might be Effingham (CM) and Chorus Angelorum.

Gainsborough or St Martin in Hymn Format
Gainsborough or St Martin in Hymn Format

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