Scripture Verse

The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament shows His handiwork. Psalm 19:1


Words: Phil­ip Skel­ton, 1784.

Music: Ab­er­deen, pos­si­bly by An­drew Tait, in James Chal­mers’ un­ti­tled col­lect­ion, 1749. Me­lo­dy from Ru­di­ments of Mu­sic, by Ro­bert Brem­ner, 1756 (🔊 pdf nwc).

If you know where to get a good pic­ture of Skelton or Tait (head-and-shoul­ders, at least 200×300 pix­els), would you ?


To God, ye choir above, begin
A hymn so loud and strong,
That all the universe may hear
And join the grateful song.

Praise Him, thou sun, who dwells unseen
Amidst transcendent light,
Where thy refulgent orb would seem
A spot, as dark as night.

Thou silver moon, ye host of stars,
The universal song
Through the serene and silent night
To listening worlds prolong.

Sing Him, ye distant worlds and suns,
From whence no travelling ray
Hath yet to us, through ages past,
Had time to make its way.

Assist, ye raging storms, and bear
On rapid wings His praise,
From north to south, from east to west,
Through heaven, and earth, and seas.

Exert your voice, ye furious fires
That rend the watery cloud,
And thunder to this nether world
Your Maker’s words aloud.

Ye works of God, that dwell unknown
Beneath the rolling main;
Ye birds, that sing among the groves,
And sweep the azure plain;

Ye stately hills, that rear your heads,
And towering pierce the sky;
Ye clouds, that with an awful pace
Majestic roll on high;

Ye insects small, to which one leaf
Within its narrow sides
A vast extended world displays,
And spacious realms provides;

Ye race, still less than these, with which
The stagnant water teems,
To which one drop, however small,
A boundless ocean seems;

Whate’er ye are, where’er ye dwell,
Ye creatures great or small,
Adore the wisdom, praise the power,
That made and governs all.

And if ye want or sense or sounds,
To swell the grateful noise,
Prompt mankind with that sense, and they
Shall find for you a voice.

From all the boundless realms of space
Let loud hosannas sound;
Loud send, ye wondrous works of God,
The grateful concert round.