The Day Thou Gavest, Lord, Is Ended

Album: 100 Best Hymns (1870)
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  • "The Day Thou Gavest, Lord, Is Ended" is the work of Cheshire vicar Rev John Ellerton (1826-93). The chairman of the education committee at the Mechanics Institute for the local Railway Company, Ellerton wrote the hymn one night as he walked to teach at the institute. He published it in 1870 in A Liturgy for Missionary Meetings.
  • The hymn's dominant theme is the Christian Church's continuous offering of worship to God. Ellerton uses imagery of day and night, morning and evening, to demonstrate the Church's unbroken, unceasing offerings of prayer and praise. It ends with a reminder that while earthly kingdoms pass away, the kingdom of God remains forever.
  • Church congregations often sing "The Day Thou Gavest" to the tune of St. Clement, composed for Ellerton's text by Rev. Clement C. Scholefield. It first appeared in Sir Arthur Sullivan's Church Hymns with Tunes published by Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge (SPCK) in 1874.
  • "The Day Thou Gavest" was sung as part of the celebrations for the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Victoria in 1897. One-hundred-twenty-five years later, it was chosen as the first hymn of Queen Elizabeth II's funeral.
  • Educated at King William's College on the Isle of Man and at Trinity College, Cambridge, Anglican hymnodist Rev. John Ellerton was ordained in the Church of England in 1851. He served six parishes, spending the longest time in Crewe Green (1860-1872), where he wrote "The Day Thou Gavest." Ellerton wrote or translated 86 or more hymns, of which this one is the best known.
  • Prog rock artist Rick Wakeman used the St. Clement tune for the conclusion of his musical portrait of Anne Boleyn on his 1973 album, The Six Wives of Henry VIII.


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