453. Let All Things Now Living

Text Information
First Line: Let all things now living
Title: Let All Things Now Living
Author: Katherine K. Davis (1939)
Meter: 66 11 66 11 D
Language: English
Publication Date: 1987
Scripture: ; ;
Topic: Creation and Providence; Close of Worship; Harvest (3 more...)
Copyright: Text and descant © 1930, 1966, E. C. Schirmer Music Co
Tune Information
Composer (desc.): Katherine K. Davis
Meter: 66 11 66 11 D
Key: F Major
Source: Welsh
Copyright: Text and descant © 1939, 1966, E. C. Schirmer Music Co.

Text Information:

Scripture References:
all st. = Gen. 1, Job 26:7-14; 38

Katherine K Davis (PHH 57) wrote this text for the tune ASH GROVE in the 1920s. The text was first published as an anthem and descant setting in 1939 (by E. C. Schirmer) under the name John Cowley, one of her pseudonyms. (Davis wrote “The Little Drummer Boy,” 1941, as well as many other songs under this and other pseudonyms.)

Employing Old Testament images, the text calls forth praise from all creatures and directs that praise to God the Creator. We praise God because he made us and provides for us (st. 1); we join our praise to that of the entire universe in a song of “hosanna and praise” (st. 2).

Liturgical Use:
For many worship services of praise and thanksgiving including, but by no means limited to, harvest thanksgiving; a doxology at the close of worship.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook

Tune Information:

ASH GROVE first appeared in print in the collection Bardic Museum compiled by Edward Jones and published in London in 1802. It has been suggested that the tune is similar to a melody found in the Beggar's Opera (1728), an opera that includes many arrangements of well-known folk tunes. ASH GROVE is, however, a harp tune rather than a folk song, and its associations in Wales are entirely secular.

Katherine K. Davis related that she found this tune in the Book of National Songs, a pamphlet published by Novello. She wrote the harmonization and a descant for the tune and published them with her text in 1939 (see above). Since that time the hymn has been a favorite of many church choirs and congregations.

ASH GROVE is a classic rounded bar form (AABA). Sing in harmony and add the descant at stanza 2, perhaps also with instruments like flutes or recorders.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook

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