Be Thou my Vision

This hymn, which asks for God's help at all stages in life, is based on an 8th century Old Irish text, Rop tú mo Baile, which is usually attributed to Dallán Forgaill. It was translated into English by Mary E. Byrne, and then put into hymn-form in 10 10 10 10 meter by Eleanor H. Hull (d1935), in 1912.

It is almost universally set to the Irish folk-tune, SLANE.

It is popular for funerals.



Singer with backing - professional recording:

Small group with band - percussion led initially:

Contemporary folk / Celtic worship arrangement - professional recording:

Massed choir with organ and brass - TV show recording

Choir and congregation with organ:


Be Thou my vision, O Lord of my heart
Naught be all else to me, save that Thou art
Thou my best thought by day or by night
Waking or sleeping, Thy presence my light

Be Thou my wisdom, and Thou my true word
I ever with Thee and Thou with me, Lord
Thou my great Father, I Thy true son
Thou in me dwelling, and I with Thee one

Be Thou my battle shield, sword for my fight
Be Thou my dignity, Thou my delight
Thou my soul's shelter, Thou my high tow'r
Raise Thou me heav'nward, O pow'r of my pow'r

Riches I heed not, nor e’en empty praise
Thou mine inheritance, now and always
Thou and Thou only, first in my heart
High King of heaven, my treasure Thou art.

High King of heaven, my victory won
May I reach heaven's joys, O bright heav'n's Son!
Heart of my own heart, what ever befall
Still be my vision, O Ruler of all.

ABC Notation

T:Be Thou My Vision
C:Words: Translated by Mary E. Byrne.
C:Versified by Eleanor H. Hull (d1935)
"G"G2 G2 AG|"C"E2 D2 DE |"G"G2 G2 "D"A2 |"G"B4 z2 |
w:1~~~Be Thou my_ Vi-sion, O_ Lord of my heart;
"D"A2 A2 A2|A2 B2 d2|"C"e2 d2 B2|"D"d4 z2|
w:1~~~Naught be all else to me, save that Thou art,
"Em"e2 ef gf|"C"e2 d2 B2|"G"d2 G2 F2|"C"E4 D2|
w:1~~~Thou my_ best_ thought, by_ day or by night. Both
"G"G2 B2 d2|"Em"ed B2 GB|"D"A2 G2 G2|"G"G6 ||
w:1~~~Wak-ing and sleep_ing, Thy_ pre-sence my light.

Ref:  What is ABC

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