Godfrey Thring, a distinguished clergyman in the Wells diocese, and a prolific writer of hymns, wrote this as a Processional hymn for the feast of Epiphany. In the first two verses the story of the visit of the Wise Men, seen as the representatives of the nations, is told in allusive fashion for people who know the details beforehand. Then we move quickly to thoughts that pervade the rest of the hymn, of all the nations being brought to Christ now in glory, and to a final home in heaven.
W H Ferguson was both musician and clergyman and, serving as he did for most of his life in great public schools, contributed to that kind of tune-writing suited to the school chapel, singing wide-sweeping tunes in unison. ‘Cuddesdon’ is an excellent example of the style, and caters easily to the processional movement of these words.
from notes by Alan Luff © 2002