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William Stanley Braithwaite, ed. The Book of Georgian Verse. 1909.

From Greenland’s Icy Mountains

Reginald Heber (1783–1826)

FROM Greenland’s icy mountains,

From India’s coral strand,

Where Afric’s sunny fountains

Roll down their golden sand;

From many an ancient river,

From many a palmy plain,

They call us to deliver

Their land from error’s chain!

What though the spicy breezes

Blow soft o’er Ceylon’s isle,

Though every prospect pleases,

And only man is vile:

In vain with lavish kindness

The gifts of God are strown,

The heathen, in his blindness,

Bows down to wood and stone!

Can we, whose souls are lighted

With wisdom from on high,

Can we to men benighted

The lamp of life deny?

Salvation! oh, salvation!

The joyful sound proclaim,

Till each remotest nation

Has learn’d Messiah’s name!

Waft, waft, ye winds, his story,

And you, ye waters, roll,

Till like a sea of glory,

It spreads from pole to pole;

Till o’er our ransomed nature,

The Lamb for sinners slain,

Redeemer, King, Creator,

In bliss returns to reign!