Shall we not Love Thee Mother Dear

This is a hymn of devotion to Mary, the mother of Jesus.

It was written by English Anglican vicar and poet, Henry Williams Baker (1821-1877).

It was first published in the 1868 Appendix to Hymns Ancient & Modern.

With meter, tunes it is set to include:
  • BEATITUDO, which was composed by John B. Dykes (1823-1876) in 1875
  • SHALL WE NOT LOVE THEE? composed by Rev Richard Owen
  • ST. AGNES (Dykes), which was composed in 1866, also by John B. Dykes (1823-1876) - likely it was the original tune that the text was set to.
  • METZLER'S REDHEAD by Richard Redhead 1820-1901


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Choir with organ, tune BEATITUDO, professional recording:

Duet with organ:

Smaller choir with organ, recorded live in a church service:

Instrumental -organ, tune METZLER'S REDHEAD

Instrumental - organ, tune ST AGNES

Instrumental accompaniment track - professional recording:


Traditional language

1 Shall we not love thee, Mother dear,
whom Jesus loves so well,
and to his glory, year by year
thy praise and honour tell?

2. Bound with the curse of sin and shame
we helpless sinners lay,
until in tender love he came
to bear the curse away.

3 Thee did he choose from whom to take
true flesh, his flesh to be;
in it to suffer for our sake,
and by it make us free.

4. Thy Babe he lay upon thy breast,
to thee he cried for food;
thy gentle nursing soothed to rest
the incarnate Son of God.

5 O wondrous depth of love divine,
that he should bend so low;
and, Mary, O what joy was thine
the Saviour's love to know.

6 Joy to be mother of the Lord,
yet thine the truer bliss,
in ev'ry thought and deed and word
to be for ever his.

7 Now in the realm of life above
close to thy Son thou art,
while on thy soul glad streams of love
flow from his sacred heart.

8 And as he loves thee, Mother dear,
we too will love thee well;
and to his glory year by year
thy joy and honor tell.

9 Jesu, the Virgin's holy Son,
praise we thy mother blest;
grant when our earthly course is run,
life with the saints at rest.

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