Jeremiah Ingalls is remembered primarily for his collection of early New England folk-hymns, The Christian Harmony (1805), which opens with the beautiful tune “Lovely Vine.” A setting of words from Joshua Smith’s Divine Hymns, the text—based on the Gospel of John—contemplates the divinity of God reflected in the natural world.
from Spring Bursts Today: A Celebration of Eastertide
released April 20, 2014
Behold a lovely vine
Here in this desert ground;
The blossoms shoot and promise fruit
And tender grapes are found.
Its circling branches rise
And shade the neighboring lands;
With lovely charms she spreads her arms
With clusters in her hands.
This city can’t be hid,
It’s built upon a hill;
The dazzling light it shines so bright
It doth the valleys fill.
Ye trees which lofty stand,
And stars with sparkling light;
Ye Christians hear both far and near,
‘Tis joy to see the sight.
Shall feeble nature sing,
And man not join the lays?
With lofty voice proclaim the joys
And join in songs of praise!
Glory to God on high,
For his redeeming grace;
The blessed dove came from above
To save our ruined race.
from Divine Hymns (1800), edited by Joshua Smith