Holy, Holy, Holy

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"Holy, Holy, Holy!"
Reginald Heber.jpg
Reginald Heber
Textby Reginald Heber
Based on
Melody"Nicaea" by John Bacchus Dykes
Composed1861 (1861)

"Holy, Holy, Holy!" is a Christian hymn written by the Anglican bishop Reginald Heber (1783–1826).[1][2][3] Its lyrics speak specifically of the Holy Trinity,[2][3] having been written for use on Trinity Sunday.[3] The opening line (Holy, Holy, Holy! Lord God Almighty!) references Isaiah 6:3, Revelation 4:8 and mirrors the opening line of the Sanctus (Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God of hosts) as found in the Book of Common Prayer. John Bacchus Dykes composed the tune Nicaea for this hymn in 1861.[1][2][3] The tune name is a tribute to the First Council of Nicaea which formalized the doctrine of the Trinity in 325.[2][3]

In a poll conducted by the Hymn Society in the United States and Canada, "Holy, Holy, Holy" was chosen as the greatest hymn of all time.[4]


Holy, Holy, Holy, church hymn

Holy, Holy, Holy! Lord God Almighty!
Early in the morning our song shall rise to Thee;
Holy, Holy, Holy! Merciful and Mighty!
God in Three Persons, blessed Trinity!

Holy, Holy, Holy! All the saints adore Thee,
Casting down their golden crowns around the glassy sea;
Cherubim and seraphim falling down before Thee,
Which wert, and art, and evermore shalt be.

Holy, Holy, Holy! though the darkness hide Thee,
Though the eye of sinful man, Thy glory may not see:
Only Thou art holy, there is none beside Thee,
Perfect in power in love, and purity.

Holy, holy, holy! Lord God Almighty!
All thy works shall praise Thy name in earth, and sky, and sea;
Holy, Holy, Holy! merciful and mighty,
God in Three Persons, blessed Trinity!

from Hymn #22 Sacred Songs and Solos.

Modern recordings[edit]


  1. ^ a b Brown, Theron; Hezekiah Butterworth (2008) [1906]. "Holy, Holy, Holy! Lord God Almighty!". The Story of the Hymns and Tunes. BiblioBazaar. p. 66. ISBN 0-554-25576-6.
  2. ^ a b c d Sankey, Ira David (2008) [1907]. "Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God Almighty". My Life and the Story of the Gospel Hymns and of Sacred Songs and Solos. BiblioBazaar. pp. 364–365. ISBN 0-559-33724-8.
  3. ^ a b c d e Osbeck, Kenneth W. (1982). "Holy, Holy, Holy". 101 hymn stories. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Kregel Publications. pp. 94–95. ISBN 0-8254-3416-5. OCLC 7875830.
  4. ^ "Hymn society tournament reveals 'greatest hymn of all time'". Religion News Service. 2019-07-19. Retrieved 2019-07-24.
  5. ^ Richards, Jeffrey (2003). A Night to Remember: the definitive Titanic film. London: I.B. Tauris. p. 26. ISBN 1-86064-849-5. OCLC 55898225.

External links[edit]