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"Hark! The Herald Angels Sing" Lyrics, Text Format

Six perfect fourths, a dominate octave skip, and,
repeating melodic rhythm patterns highlight this storied carol.



  • Grade: Fifth
  • Origin: England/German – words: Charles Wesley, 1739
    music: Felix Mendelssohn (1809-1847), 1840*
  • Key: F major
  • Time: 4/4
  • Form: ABCDE
  • Rhythm: beginners: | ta ta ta/ ti | syncopation,
    | ta ta ta ta | ta ta ta/a | ta ti ti ta/ ti | syncopation
  • Pitches: intermediate: So La Ti Do Re Mi Fa So La
  • Intervals: intermediate: m3: Re\Ti, Fa\Re; M3: Do/Mi; P4: So/Do, Re/So8, Do\So, So8\Re, Do/Fa, Mi/La; P5: So\Do, Re/La; P8: So/So8 (dominante octave skip)
  • Musical Elements: notes: half, dotted quarter, quarter, eighth; vocal slurs, repeating melodic rhythm patterns, dominant octave skip
  • Key Words: world geography: England, Germany, Bethlehem; invention of the Gutenberg printing press, William H. Cummings, sacred, Christmas Carol, Christmas hymn, birth of Jesus, Bible story, hark, herald angels, glory, newborn, mercy mild, God, sinners, reconciled, triumph, angelic host, proclaim, Heaven, Prince of Peace, hail, righteousness, risen, healing, Sons of earth, second birth; abbreviations: heav’n (heaven), th’angelic (the angelic), ris’n (risen)

*One hundred years after the words were written, Felix Mendelssohn composed a cantata to commemorate Johann Gutenberg’s invention of the printing press. Music from this cantata was adapted by the English musician William H. Cummings to fit the lyrics of “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing”.

“Hark! The Herald Angels Sing”

Hark! the herald angels sing,
Glory to the newborn King!
Peace on earth, and mercy mild.
God an sinners reconciled!
Joyful all ye nations rise.
Join the triumph of the skies;
With th’angelic host proclaim,
“Christ is born in Bethlehem.”
Hark! the herald angels sing.
Glory to the newborn King.
Hail, the heav’n born Prince of Peace!
Hail the sun of righteousness!
Light on life to all He brings,
Ris’n with healing in his wings.
Mild He lays His glory by,
Born that man no more may die.
Born to raise the Sons of earth,
Born to give them second birth.
Hark! the herald angels sing.
Glory to the newborn King.
Additional Formats (click to enlarge)
"Hark! The Herald Angels Sing" Music Format
Click to enlarge: "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing" Beats Format
Click to Enlarge: "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing" Rhythm Format
pitch numbers
Click to Enlarge: "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing" Pitch Number Format
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letter names
Click to Enlarge: "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing" Letter Names Format