Friday, December 21, 2007

I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day

The following are ALL the verses of "I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day" - followed by the context of why they were written. I will never look at this song the same way again.

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Christmas Bells, by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.

I heard the bells on Christmas Day
Their old, familiar carols play,
And wild and sweet
The words repeat
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

And thought how, as the day had come,
The belfries of all Christendom
Had rolled along
The unbroken song
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

Till, ringing, singing on its way,
The world revolved from night to day,
A voice, a chime,
A chant sublime
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

Then from each black, accursed mouth
The cannon thundered in the South,
And with the sound
The carols drowned
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

It was as if an earthquake rent
The hearth-stones of a continent,
And made forlorn
The households born
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

And in despair I bowed my head;
“There is no peace on earth,” I said:
“For hate is strong,
And mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!”

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
“God is not dead; nor doth he sleep!
The Wrong shall fail,
The Right prevail,
With peace on earth, good-will to men!”

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Written by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow in 1864: One year after his son was severely wounded in battle; three years after his wife burned to death in an accident.

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This information was posted on Times & Seasons.

3 comments:

Rob & Crys said...

How interesting. I love this song. Thanks for sharing.

AJ said...

It's been a favorite of mine, after hearing the background about 5 years ago. It is amazing the power of hope and peace that the Savior can bring if we only allow him. Thanks for sharing.

Mama D said...

Ray - thanks for posting the background info of this song.

AJ - this is one of Sarah's favorite Christmas songs, specifically because of you teaching the YW about the background of the song! Thanks for all of your wonderful influence over the years with Sarah (Primary and YW)!!