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Father most holy, merciful and loving

Father most holy, merciful and loving. Latin 10th century, translated by Alfred Edward Alston* (1862-1927). This is Alston’s translation of a 10th-century Latin hymn found in many breviaries, beginning ‘O pater sancte, mitis atque pie’. It is in the common Sapphic metre, popular in medieval hymnody, which Alston retains. It was written for the 1904 edition of A&M, but published beforehand in Alston’s Some Liturgical Hymns newly rendered from the Latin, with the Ancient Melodies (Norwich, 1903). With alterations, it has been the preferred translation of the Latin hymn in all editions of A&M up to and including A&MCP. It is also the translation used by The Plainsong Hymnbook...

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