“Hark the Herald Angels Sing” was a carol written by Charles Wesley, born DECEMBER 18, 1707, at Epworth, England.
The 18th child of Rev. Samuel and Susanna Wesley, he excelled in school and came to the attention of Garret Wesley, or Wellesley, a Member of Parliament with a large fortune in Daugan, Ireland. Having no child, he offered to adopt Charles as his heir, but Charles declined.
After graduating from Oxford, Charles sailed to the colony of Georgia with his brother, John, who was the colony’s Anglican minister. Charles was secretary to the colony’s founder, General James Oglethorpe, a soldier who had previously fought the Muslims invading Serbia. The Wesleys’ desire to minister to Indians never materialize so they returned to England where their preaching started the Great Awakening Revival.
John founded the Methodist Church and Charles wrote over 6,000 hymns.
In 1753, around the time 21-year-old George Washington was fighting in the French and Indian War, Charles Wesley penned a Christmas carol, put the music of Lutheran composer Felix Mendelssohn, grandson of the notable Jewish philosopher, Moses Mendelssohn.
Hark, the Herald Angels sing,
Glory to the new-born King,
Peace on earth, and mercy mild,
God and sinners reconciled.
Joyful all ye nations rise,
Join the triumph of the skies;
With th’ angelic host proclaim,
Christ is born in Bethlehem.
Self-Educated American contributing editor, William J. Federer, is the bestselling author of “Backfired: A Nation Born for Religious Tolerance no Longer Tolerates Religion,” and numerous other books. A frequent radio and television guest, his daily American Minute is broadcast nationally via radio, television, and Internet. Check out all of Bill’s books here.