I have recently posted my freshly composed versification of the ancient Greek hymn, the Phos Hilaron (??? ??????), which is the most ancient Christian hymn outside the Bible itself, dating back at least to the 3rd century AD, if not earlier. It is an evening hymn most appropriately sung at the beginning of vespers in the Liturgy of the Hours. It is first recorded in the Apostolic Constitutions in the 4th century. St. Basil the Great spoke of it as an ancient hymn already in that same century. For the tune I have taken that for Genevan Psalm 77/86 and somewhat extended it to fit the length of the single stanza. The tune is in the hypodorian mode. I may still come up with my own tune at some point. Here is my versified text:

Joyous Light so full of glory
of th’ immortal Father holy,
heavenly, hallowed, blessèd One,
Jesus Christ, at setting sun,
having seen the twilight glimmer
as the light of day grows dimmer,
we our gladdened voices raise,
singing forth our songs of praise
to the Father, Son and Spirit.
Worthy then are you to hear it
as we joyfully intone
with our voices joined as one,
Son of God, the world’s life-giver,
all exalt your name for ever.

Text: 3rd century Greek hymn, versification © 2011 by David T. Koyzis
Tune: Genevan Psalm 77/86 alt., arrangement © 2006 by David T. Koyzis

Articles by David T. Koyzis

Loading...

Show 0 comments