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O come, all ye faithful – Adeste fideles

First line:
O come, all ye faithful
probable composer
arranger, verses 1-5
arranger, verse 6
arranger, verse 7
author of text

O come, all ye faithful owns a fascinating backstory. Its original Latin text, Adeste fideles, was believed for many years to be the work of St Bonaventura, while its melody was attributed either to a Portuguese monk or an English musician. It appears likely, however, that its words and music were created by a member the circle of Catholic musicians known to John Francis Wade, a scribe and music teacher at the English College at Douai in northern France—Thomas Arne among them—or by Wade himself. One version of the tune survives in a manuscript from c1740 with connections to James Francis Edward Stuart, the so-called ‘Old Pretender’, Catholic claimant to the thrones of England, Scotland and Ireland. It entered the Anglican mainstream in the late 1790s after the Duke of Leeds heard it at the Portuguese Embassy chapel in Lincoln’s Inn Fields and commissioned a new arrangement from Thomas Greatorex, director of the Concerts of Antient Music at the Haymarket Opera House.

from notes by Andrew Stewart © 2021


In the bleak midwinter
KGS0060-DDownload only Available Friday 5 November 2021


Track 10 on KGS0060-D [7'26] Download only Available Friday 5 November 2021

Track-specific metadata for KGS0060-D track 10

Recording date
1 December 2020
Recording venue
King's College Chapel, Cambridge, United Kingdom
Recording producer
Benjamin Sheen
Recording engineer
Benjamin Sheen
Hyperion usage
  1. In the bleak midwinter (KGS0060-D)
    Disc 1 Track 10
    Release date: 5 November 2021
    Download only Available Friday 5 November 2021
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