Eternal wisdom, thee we praise

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This is a poem by Isaac Watts from Horae Lyricae, Book 1, 1706, entitled A Song to Creating Wisdom.

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Text and translations

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1. Eternal Wisdom, Thee we praise
Thee the creation sings:
With thy loud name, rocks, hills, and seas
And heaven's high palace rings.

2. Place me on the bright wings of day
To travel with the sun;
With what amaze shall I survey
The wonders Thou hall done!

3. Thy hand, how wide it spread the sky!
How glorious to behold!
Tinged with a blue of heavenly dye
And starred with sparkling gold,

4. There thou had bid the globes of light
Their endless circles run;
There the pale planet rules the night,
And day obeys the sun.

5. Downward I turn my wondering eyes
On clouds and storms below:
Those under-regions of the skies
Thy numerous glories show.

6. The noisy winds stand ready there
Thy orders to obey;
With sounding wings they sweep the air,
To make Thy chariot way.

7. There, like a trumpet loud and strong,
Thy thunder shakes our coast;
While the red lightnings wave along
The banners of thine host.

8. On the thin air, without a prop,
Hang fruitful showers around:
At thy command they sink, and drop
Their fatness on the ground.


9. Now to the earth I bend my song,
And cast my eyes abroad:
Glancing the British Isles along.
Blest isles, confess your God.

10. How did his wondrous skill array
Your fields in charming green!
A thousand herbs his art display,
A thousand flowers between!

11. Tall oaks for future navies grow,
Fair Albion's best defense,
While corn and vines rejoice below:
Those luxuries of sense.

12. The bleating flocks his pasture feeds:
And herds of larger size,
That bellow through the Lindian meads,
His bounteous hand supplies.

13. We see the Thames caress the shores;
He guides her silver flood:
While angry Severn swells and roars,
Yet hears her ruler, God.

14. The rolling mountains of the deep
Observe his strong command;
His breath can raise the billows steep,
Or sink them to the sand.

15. Amid Thy watery kingdom, Lord,
The finny nations play,
And scaly monsters, at thy word,
Rush through the northern sea.


16. Thy glories blaze all nature round,
And strike the gazing sight,
Through skies, and seas, and solid ground;
With terror and delight.

17. Infinite strength and equal skill
Shine through the worlds abroad:
Our souls with vast amazement fill,
And speak the Builder, God.

18. But the sweet beauties of thy grace
Our softer passions move;
Pity divine in Jesus' face
We see, adore, and love.

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