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O come, O come, Immanuel

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Uploaded by: Agnus_Dei (12/17/14)
Composer: Plainsong, Mode i
Sample Producer: Sonus Paradisi
Sample Set: Caen - St. Etienne Cavaillé Coll
Software: Hauptwerk IV
Genre: Hymn
Today is the 18th day in the Advent-Hymn-of-the-Day project, and it is also a very special day in the liturgical life of the Church. This "special period" relates directly to the hymn of the day. Starting on December 17th, and continuing through the 23rd, the church enters the yearly cycle of the Great "O" Antiphons. In short, these antiphons are sung in the Roman rite before and after the Magnificat at Vespers, and in the Anglican rite, before and after the Magnificat at Evensong. The translation I've used is by the Rev. Thomas A. Lacey (1853-1931). It is an older translation than most people will be familiar with, but it's magnificence and dignity can not be surpassed. The plainsong melody was adapted from a 15th century French Missal by Thomas Helmore (1811-1890), and I've used his original harmonies as the basis of my performance. Alternating voices is intended, with the trebles singing the even verses, and the first and last verses intended to be sung full.

O come, O come, Immanuel,
and ransom captive Israel
that mourns in lonely exile here
until the Son of God appear.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Immanuel
shall come to you, O Israel.

O come, O Wisdom from on high,
who ordered all things mightily;
to us the path of knowledge show
and teach us in its ways to go.

O come, O come, great Lord of might,
who to your tribes on Sinai's height
in ancient times did give the law
in cloud and majesty and awe.

O come, O Branch of Jesse's stem,
unto your own and rescue them!
From depths of hell your people save,
and give them victory o'er the grave.

O come, O Key of David, come
and open wide our heavenly home.
Make safe for us the heavenward road
and bar the way to death's abode.

O come, O Bright and Morning Star,
and bring us comfort from afar!
Dispel the shadows of the night
and turn our darkness into light.

O come, O King of nations, bind
in one the hearts of all mankind.
Bid all our sad divisions cease
and be yourself our King of Peace.
Performance: Live
Recorded in: Stereo
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