Hymn of the Week: ‘The King of Love, My Shepherd Is’

The Deacon's Bench | 7/21/2018 | Staff
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This great old Protestant hymn has found a welcome home in many Catholic parishes. It’s a soothing, gently-rendered interpretation of the 23rd Psalm, written by Henry Williams Baker. Some background:

“The King of Love my Shepherd Is,” a metrical paraphrase of Psalm 23, was written by Baker for the Second Edition of Hymns Ancient & Modern in 1868, and included in the appendix. His friend John Bacchus Dykes (1823-1876), a musical editor on the committee, wrote the tune DOMINUS REGIT ME specifically for it, which is the title of Psalm 23 in the Latin Vulgate translation. Many writers have commented on the compelling beauty of this well-suited tune and text, which British hymnologist Ian Bradley described as a regularity of rhythm and even balance between rising lines in phrases one and three and falling lines in phrases two and four. The unique double rhymes Baker uses in many places at the end of lines two and four are well-enhanced by this tune.

Ralph - Vaughan - Williams - Hymn

Later, Ralph Vaughan Williams (1872-1958) sought to republish the hymn in The...
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