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For He that is to be thy Judge,

Thy Saviour is become.

A Song of Praise for the Morning.

My God was with me all this night,

And gave me sweet repose:

My God did watch, even whilst I slept,

Or I had never rose.

How many groan'd and wish'd for sleep,

Until they wish'd for day;

Measuring slow hours with their quick pains,

Whilst I securely lay!

Whilst I did sleep, all dangers slept,

No thieves did me affright;

Those evening wolves, those beasts of prey,

Disturbers of the night.

No raging flames nor storms did rend

The house that I was in;

I heard no dreadful cries without,
No doleful groans within.

What terrors have I 'scap'd this night,

Which have on others fell!

My body might have slept its last,

My soul have waked in hell.

Sweet rest hath gain'd that strength to me,

Which labour did devour:

My body was in weakness sown,

But it is raised in power.

Lord, for the mercies of the night,

My humble thanks I pay;

And unto Thee I dedicate

The first-fruits of the day.

Let this day praise Thee, O my God,

And so let all my days:

And, O let mine eternal day

Be thine eternal praise.

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These are my God's ambassadors,

By whom His mind I know;
God's angels in His lower heaven,
God's trumpeters below.

The trumpet sounds, the dead arise,
Which fell by Adam's hand:
Again the trumpet sounds, and they'
Set forth for Canaan's land.

Thy servants speak; but Thou, Lord, dost An hearing ear bestow :

They smite the rock; but Thou, my God,
Dost make the waters flow:

They shoot the arrow; but Thy hand
Doth drive the arrow home:

They call; but, Lord, Thou dost compel,
And then Thy guests are come.

Angels that fly, and worms that creep,
Are both alike to Thee:

If Thou mak'st worms Thine angels, Lord,
They bring my God to me.

As sons of thunder, first they come,

And I the lightning fear;

But then they bring me to my home,
And sons of comfort are.

Lord, Thou art in them of a truth,
That I might never stray;
The clouds and pillars march before,
And shew me Canaan's way.
I bless my God, who is my guide;
I sing in Sion's ways:

When shall I sing on Sion's hill

Thine everlasting praise?


THE reader is already somewhat acquainted with Sternhold, and Hopkins, and others, who translated the Psalms in the sixteenth century.* To that list should have been added Sir Philip Sidney and his sister, the Countess of Pembroke. As the latter lived through the first twenty years of the seventeenth century, we may, without any gross anachronism, give here a specimen of a version which, in music and energy, has been seldom surpassed. Many copies of the work have long been known to exist in manuscript; but it was not till 1823 that it found its way into print, when a small impression was issued from the Chiswick Press. Sir Philip is said to have gone no further than the 43d Psalm: our quotation is, therefore, from the pen of the countess :

Psalm cxxxvii.

Nigh seated where the river flows

That watereth Babel's thankful plain,
Which then our tears in pearled rows
Did help to water with their rain;
The thought of Zion bred such woes,
That though our harps we did retain,

Yet useless, and untouched there
On willows only hang'd they were.

Now while our harps were hanged so,
The men, whose captives then we lay,
Did on our griefs insulting go,

And more to grieve us thus did say:

*See Christian Classics, vol. i., pp. 126–133.

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