Come, O Thou Traveler Unknown

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Wrestling Jacob / Come, O Thou Traveler Unknown
Methodist Hymn
Rembrandt - Jacob Wrestling with the Angel - Google Art Project (cropped for emotional interaction).jpg
Other name"Come, O Thou Traveler Unknown"
TextCharles Wesley
Based onGenesis 32:24–32
Meter8.8.8.8 (L.M.)
Melody"Candler" (Traditional Scottish), "Penuel" by William McDonald
Published1742 (1742)

"Wrestling Jacob", also known by its incipit, "Come, O thou traveler unknown", is a poem and hymn on the nature of God which appears in some Protestant hymnals. It focuses on the change that can occur in one's own heart and is based on Genesis 32:24-32, which is the story of Jacob wrestling with an angel sent by God at Peniel.

It is sung to one of several tunes, including "Candler" (a traditional Scottish tune),[1] "Wrestling Jacob" (by Samuel Sebastian Wesley), "David's Harp" (by Robert King)[2] and Vernon (by Lucius Chapin).[3] It is hymn number 386 in The United Methodist Hymnal (set to "Candler"); hymn number 434(i) (to "Wrestling Jacob") and 434(ii) (to "David's Harp") in Hymns and Psalms, among others.

Isaac Watts, the "Father of English Hymnody", remarked that Wesley's poem was "worth all the verses that he himself had written."[4]


  1. ^ Wesley, Charles (1989). "Come, O Thou Traveler Unknown". The United Methodist Hymnal. Nashville, TN: The United Methodist Publishing House. pp. 386–7. ISBN 0-687-43132-8. Retrieved 2014-09-16.
  2. ^ Hymns and Psalms. London: Methodist Publishing House. 1983. p. 434. ISBN 0-946550-01-8.
  3. ^ "VERNON (Chapin)".
  4. ^ Young, Carlton (1993). Companion to the United Methodist Hymnal. Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press. p. 295. ISBN 0-687-09260-4.