Imágenes de páginas


“While the days are going by” is the refrain of the song, and the line by which it is recognized. The hymn or poem was written by George Cooper. He was born in New York City, May 14, 1840 a writer of poems and magazine articles,-composed “While the days are going by” in 1870.

There are lonely hearts to cherish

While the days are going by.
There are weary souls who perish
While the days are going by.

Up! then, trusty hearts and true,
Though the day comes, night comes, too:
Oh, the good we all may do

While the days are going by! There are few more practical and alwaystimely verses than this three-stanza poem.

THE TUNE. A very musical tune, with spirited chorus, (in Gospel Hymns) bears the name of the refrain, and was composed by Mr. Sankey.

A sweet and quieter harmony (uncredited) is mated with the hymn in the old Baptist Praise Book (p. 507) and this was long the fixture to the words, in both Sunday-school and week-day school song-books.

"JESUS THE WATER OF LIFE WILL GIVE." This Sunday-school lyric is the work of Fanny J. Crosby (Mrs. Van Alstyne). Like her other and

greater hymn, "Jesus keep me near the Cross,” (noted on p. 156,) it reveals the habitual attitude of the pious author's mind, and the simple earnestness of her own faith as well as her desire to win others.

Jesus the water of life will give

Freely, freely, freely;
Jesus the water of life will give

Freely to those who love Him.

The Spirit and the Bride say "Come

Freely, freely, freely.
And he that is thirsty let him come

And drink the water of life.”

Full chorus,

The Fountain of life is flowing,

Flowing, freely flowing;
The Fountain of life is flowing,

Is flowing for you and for me.


The hymn must be sung as it was made to be sung, and the composer being many years en rapport with the writer, knew how to put all her metrical rhythms into sweet sound. The tunein Mr. Bradbury's Fresh Laurels (1867)—is one of his sympathetic interpretations, and, with the duet sung by two of the best singers of the middle class Sunday-school girls, is a melodious and impressive “WHEN HE COMETH, WHEN HE COMETH.”

The Rev. W. O. Cushing, with the beautiful thought in Malachi 3:17 singing in his soul, composed this favorite Sunday-school hymn, which has gone round the world.

When He cometh, when He cometh

To make up His jewels,
All the jewels, precious jewels,

His loved and His own.
Like the stars of the morning,

His bright brow adorning
They shall shine in their beauty

Bright gems for His crown.
He will gather, He will gather

The gems for His Kingdom,
All the pure ones, all the bright ones,
His loved and His own.

Like the stars, etc.
Little children, little children

Who love their Redeemer,
Are the jewels, precious jewels
His loved and His own,

Like the stars, etc.

Rev. William Orcutt Cushing of Hingham, Mass., born Dec. 31, 1823, wrote this little hymn when a young man (1856), probably with no idea

and even if it is a "ringing of changes" on pretty syllables, that is not all. There is a thought in it that sings. Its glory came to it, however, when it got its tune-and he must have had a subconsciousness of the tune he wanted when he made the lines for his Sunday-school. He died Oct. 19, 1902.

THE TUNE. The composer of the music for the “ Jewel Hymn”* was George F. Root, then living in Reading, Mass.

A minister returning from Europe on an English steamer visited the steerage, and after some friendly talk proposed a singing service—if something could be started that "everybody" knew for there were hundreds of emigrants there from nearly every part of Europe.

"It will have to be an American tune, then," said the steerage-master; "try ‘His jewels.""

The minister struck out at once with the melody and words,

When He cometh, when He cometh, -and scores of the poor half-fare multitude joined voices with him. Many probably recognized the music of the old glee, and some had heard the sweet air played in the church-steeples at home. Other voices chimed in, male and female, catching the air, and sometimes the words—they were so easy and so many times repeated—and the volume of song increased, till the singing minister stood in the midst of an international concert, the most novel that he ever led.

*Comparison of the “Jewel Hymn" tune with the old glee of " Johnny Schmoker” gives color to the assertion that Mr. Root caught up and adapted a popular ditty for his Christian melody—as was so often done in Wales, and in the Lutheran and Weslegar reformations. He baptized the comic fugue, and promoted it from the vaudeville stage to the Sunday School.

He tried other songs in similar visits during the rest of the voyage with some success, but the “ Jewel Hymn" was the favorite; and by the time port was in sight the whole crowd of emigrants had it by heart.

The steamer landed at Quebec, and when the trains, filled with the new arrivals, rolled away, the song was swelling from nearly every car,

When He cometh, when He cometh,

To make up His jewels. The composer of the tune--with all the patriotic and sacred master-pieces standing to his credit-never reaped a richer triumph than he shared with his poet-partner that day, when “Precious Jewels" came back to them from over the sea. More than this, there was missionary joy for them both that their tuneful work had done something to hallow the homes of alien settlers with an American Christian psalm.

George Frederick Root, Doctor of Music, was born in Sheffield, Mass., 1820, eldest of a family of eight children, and spent his youth on a farm. His genius for music drew him to Boston, where he became a pupil of Lowell Mason, and soon advanced so far as to teach music himself and lead the choir in Park St, church. Afterwards he went to New York as director of music in Dr. Deems's Church of the

« AnteriorContinuar »