246. Come, Thou Almighty King

1 Come, thou almighty King,
help us thy name to sing;
help us to praise.
Father all-glorious,
o'er all victorious,
come and reign over us,
Ancient of Days.

2 Come, thou incarnate Word,
gird on thy mighty sword;
scatter thy foes.
Let thine almighty aid
our sure defense be made,
our souls on thee be stayed;
thy wonders show.

3 Come, holy Comforter,
thy sacred witness bear
in this glad hour.
Thou who almighty art,
rule now in every heart,
and ne'er from us depart,
Spirit of power.

4 To thee, great One in Three,
eternal praises be
hence evermore!
Thy sovereign majesty
may we in glory see,
and to eternity
love and adore.

Text Information
First Line: Come, thou almighty King
Title: Come, Thou Almighty King
Author: Anonymous (1757, alt.)
Meter: 664 6664
Language: English
Publication Date: 1982
Scripture: ; ;
Topic: Doxologies; King, God/Christ as; Preaching (5 more...)
Tune Information
Composer: Felice de Giardini (1769)
Meter: 664 6664
Key: F Major

Text Information:

Scripture References:
st.3 = John 15:26

The anonymous text dates from before 1757, when it was published in a leaflet and bound into the 1757 edition of George Whitefield's Collection of Hymns for Social Worship. The text appears to be patterned after the British national anthem, "God Save the King." Filled with names for members of the Godhead, this song exhibits a common trinitarian structure, addressing God the Father (st. 1), God the Son (st. 2), and God the Holy Spirit (st. 3), concluding with a doxology to the Trinity (st. 4).

The text has often been attributed to Charles Wesley, since the leaflet also included a hymn text from his pen (“Jesus, Let Thy Pitying Eye"); however, "Come, Thou Almighty King" was never printed in any of the Wesley hymnals, and no other Wesley text is written in such an unusual mete

Liturgical Use:
Beginning of worship; as a doxology (st.4)

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook

Tune Information:

Felice de Giardini (b. Turin, Italy, 1716; d. Moscow, Russia, 1796) composed ITALIAN HYMN in three parts for this text at the request of Selina Shirley, the famous evangelically minded Countess of Huntingdon. Giardini was living in London at the time and contributed this tune and three others to Martin Madan's Collection of Psalm and Hymn Tunes (1769), published to benefit the Lock Hospital in London where Madan was chaplain.

Giardini achieved great musical fame throughout Europe, especially in England. He studied violin, harpsichord, voice, and composition in Milan and Turin; from 1748 to 1750 he conducted a very successful solo violin tour on the continent. He came to England in 1750 and for the next forty years lived in London, where he was a prominent violinist in several orchestras. Giardini also taught and composed operas and instrumental music. In 1784 he traveled to Italy, but when he returned to London in 1790, Giardini was no longer popular. His subsequent tour to Russia also failed, and he died there in poverty.

ITALIAN HYMN appears in most hymnals, sometimes with small variants when compared to the original melody, as in the Psalter Hymnal. Named for its composer's homeland, ITALIAN HYMN is also known as MOSCOW (where Giardini died) and TRINITY (after the theme of the hymn text).

This vigorous tune needs strong rhythmic accompaniment. Think one broad beat per measure. The doxological stanza can be taken more majestically.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook

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