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Love Divine, All Loves Excelling
Love Divine, All Loves Excelling is a Christian hymn by Charles Wesley with a theme of "Christian perfection." Judging by general repute, it is among Wesley's finest: "justly famous and beloved, better known than almost any other hymn of Charles Wesley." Judging by its distribution, it is also among his most successful: by the end of the 19th century, it is found in 15 of the 17 hymn books consulted by the authors of Lyric Studies. On a larger scale, it is found almost universally in general collections of the past century, including not only Methodist and Anglican hymn books and commercial and ecumenical collections, but also hymnals published by Reformed, Presbyterian, Baptist, Brethren, Seventh-day Adventist, Lutheran, Congregationalist, Pentecostal, and Roman Catholic traditions, among others including the Churches of Christ.
The melody was inspired by the form and metre of Drydenís patriotic poem Fairest isle, all isles excelling (set by Purcell). It became associated with the Welsh tune Hyfrydol in the twentieth century. This was composed by R H Prichard, a Welsh mill-worker and chapel precentor, and published in 1855.
Rowland Huw Prichard (14 January 1811 Ė 25 January 1887) was a Welsh musician. A native of Graienyn, near Bala, he lived most of his life in the area, serving for a time as a loom tender's assistant in Holywell, where he died. In 1844 Prichard published Cyfaill y Cantorion (The Singer's Friend), a song book intended for children.
Lyrics by Charles Wesley