2591. How Great Thou Art

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Text Information
First Line: O Lord my God, when I in awesome wonder
Title: How Great Thou Art
Original Language: Swedish
Author: Stuart Wesley Keene Hine (1953)
Language: English
Copyright: © 1949 & 1953, & this arrangement ©2010 by The Stuart Hine Trust. All rights in the U.S.A. except print rights administered by EMI CMG. U.S.A Print rights administered by Hope Publishing Company, Carol Stream, IL 60188. Used by permission
Notes: In 1885, at age 26, Swedish preacher Carl G. Boberg wrote the words only of a poem entitled "O Store Gud." Several years later, Boberg attended a meeting and was surprised to hear his poem being sung to the tune of an old Swedish melody. In the early 1920s, English missionaries, Stuart K. Hine and his wife, ministered in Poland. It was there they learned the Russian version of Boberg's poem, "O Store Gud," coupled with the original Swedish melody. Later, Hine wrote original English words and made his own arrangement of the Swedish melody, which became popular and is now known as the hymn, "How Great Thou Art." The first three verses were inspired, line upon line, amidst unforgettable experiences in the Carpathian Mountains. In a village to which he had climbed, Mr. Hine stood in the street singing a Gospel Hymn and reading aloud, John, Chapter Three. Among the sympathetic listeners was a local village schoolmaster. A storm was gathering, and when it was evident that no further travel could be made that night, the friendly schoolmaster offered his hospitality. Awe-inspiring was the mighty thunder echoing through the mountains, and it was this impression that was to bring about the birth of the first verse. Pushing on, Hine crossed the mountain frontier into Romania and into Bukovina. Together with some young people, through the woods and forest glades he wandered, and heard the birds sing sweetly in the trees. Thus, the second verse came into being. Verse three was inspired by the conversion of many Carpathian mountain-dwellers. The fourth verse did not come about until Hine's return to Britain.
Tune Information
Name: HOW GREAT THOU ART
Composer: Anonymous
Adapter: Stuart K. Hine
Incipit: 55535 55664 66665
Key: B♭ Major
Source: Swedish folk melody
Copyright: © 1949 & 1953 The Stuart Hine Trust



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