Thaxted (tune)

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The Manse in Thaxted, where Gustav Holst lived from 1917 to 1925

"Thaxted" is a hymn tune by the English composer Gustav Holst, based on the stately theme from the middle section of the Jupiter movement of his orchestral suite The Planets and named after Thaxted, the English village where he lived much of his life. He adapted the theme in 1921 to fit the patriotic poem "I Vow to Thee, My Country" by Cecil Spring Rice but that was as a unison song with orchestra.[1] It did not appear as a hymn-tune called "Thaxted" until his friend Ralph Vaughan Williams included it in Songs of Praise in 1926.[2]

The tune[edit]

\relative f' { \time 3/4 \key c \major \partial 4 e8( g) a4. c8 b8. g16 c8( d) c4 b a8 b a4 g e2 }

Hymns written to the tune[edit]

Other uses[edit]

Secular songs written to the tune include:

A literary reference appears in "The Adventure of the Lost World",[20] a Sherlock Holmes pastiche written by Dominic Green, where the tune is a major plot element, though the story contains a chronological error in that its Autumn 1918 setting would pre-date the publishing of the tune under the name "Thaxted".

Commercial uses include:

  • Japanese singer Ayaka Hirahara released a pop version of Jupiter in December 2003. It went to No. 2 on the Oricon charts and sold nearly a million copies, making it the third-best-selling single in the Japanese popular music market for 2004. It remained on the charts for over three years.[21]
  • Sarah Brightman has recorded a song "Running" in 2007. It was the theme song for the IAAF Championships; she performed it at the opening ceremony in Osaka.
  • Maddy Prior includes the tune in two pieces of her 2003 album Lionhearts.[22]
  • 94 WIP, a radio station in Philadelphia, began using the tune as part of a Philadelphia Phillies radio commercial in 2014.


  1. ^ Holst, Imogen (1974). A Thematic Catalogue of Gustav Holst's Music. Faber. p. 145. ISBN 978-0571100040.
  2. ^ Vaughan Williams, Ralph; Shaw, Martin; Dearmer, Percy, eds. (1926). Songs of Praise. Oxford University Press.
  3. ^ "The order of service for the funeral of Baroness Thatcher". Retrieved 24 September 2018.
  4. ^ "O Merciful Redeemer". Retrieved 26 June 2014.
  5. ^ "We Pledge To One Another". Retrieved 19 November 2015.
  6. ^ "O God Beyond All Praising". Retrieved 1 July 2008.
  7. ^ "O Spirit All-Embracing". GIA Publications. Retrieved 28 May 2009.
  8. ^ "As the Bread of Life Is Broken". Retrieved 12 August 2015.
  9. ^ "Let David Be Remembered (Psalm 132)".
  10. ^ "We Praise You and Acknowledge You, O God". Starke, Stephen P. Retrieved 30 March 2011.
  11. ^ "Resources for Study, Reflection and Prayer". Anglican Church of Canada. Archived from the original on 23 November 2009. Retrieved 2 April 2009.
  12. ^ "Three Days". OCP. Retrieved 16 February 2009.
  13. ^ "From Penola's Plains". Marist Melbourne. Archived from the original on 13 September 2009. Retrieved 23 May 2010.
  14. ^ "Conference Summary for the 175th Semiannual General Conference".
  15. ^ "Shawnee Press, For the Splendor of Creation" (PDF). Retrieved 27 May 2010.[permanent dead link]
  16. ^ "Article in Forward In Christ". Retrieved 20 May 2014.
  17. ^ "Hymn sung at beginning of video". Retrieved 17 May 2019.
  18. ^ "Jesus, The Man Of Wonders". Three Legged Music Limited. Retrieved 16 October 2020.
  19. ^ "Lawrence University: College Songs of Past and Present". Archived from the original on 6 March 2001. Retrieved 1 July 2008.
  20. ^ originally published 2004 online in BBCi Cult Sherlock Holmes Magazine, and reprinted in The Improbable Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, ed. John Joseph Adams. San Francisco: Night Shade Books (ISBN 978-1597801607), 2009.
  21. ^ 平原綾香 (Hirahara Ayaka) at (in English)
  22. ^ "Lionhearts track listing at". Retrieved 19 November 2015.

External links[edit]