It came upon the midnight clear,
That glorious song of old,
From angels bending near the earth
To touch their harps of gold;
“Peace on the earth, good will to men,
From heaven’s all-gracious King:”
The world in solemn stillness lay,
To hear the angels sing.
Still through the cloven skies they come,
With peaceful wings unfurled,
And still their heav’nly music floats
O’er all the weary world:
Above its sad and lowly plains
They bend on hov’ring wing,
And ever o’er its Babel sounds
The blessed angels sing.
And ye, beneath life’s crushing load,
Whose forms are bending low,
Who toil along the climbing way
With painful steps and slow,
Look now! for glad and golden hours
Come swiftly on the wing:
O rest beside the weary road,
And hear the angels sing.
For lo, the days are hastening on,
By prophet bards foretold,
When with the ever-circling years
Comes round the age of gold;
When peace shall over all the earth
Its ancient splendors fling,
And the whole world give back the song
Which now the angels sing.
~ Edmund Hamilton Sears, 1849, America
Read more about this hymn at Hymnary.