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Hymn by Robert Bridges (1899), based on the Latin Salve Caput Cruentatum by Bernard of Clairvaux. The hymn is sung to the tune Passion Chorale, by Hans L Hassler, usually in the arrangement by Johann Sebastian Bach.

O sacred head, sore wounded,
Defiled and put to scorn;
O kingly head surrounded
With mocking crown of thorn:
What sorrow mars thy grandeur?
Can death thy bloom deflower?
O countenance whose splendour
The hosts of heaven adore!

Thy beauty, long-desirèd,
Hath vanished from our sight;
Thy power is all expirèd,
And quenched the light of light.
Ah me! for whom thou diest,
Hide not so far thy grace:
Show me, O Love most highest,
The brightness of thy face.

I pray thee, Jesus, own me,
Me, Shepherd good, for thine;
Who to thy fold hast won me,
And fed with truth divine.
Me guilty, me refuse not,
Incline thy face to me,
This comfort that I lose not,
On Earth to comfort thee.

In thy most bitter passion
My heart to share doth cry,
With thee for my salvation
Upon the cross to die.
Ah, keep my heart thus moved
To stand thy cross beneath,
To mourn thee, well-beloved,
Yet thank thee for thy death.

My days are few, O fail not,
With thine immortal power,
To hold me that I quail not
in death's most fearful hour;
That I may fight befriended,
And see, in my last strife
To me thine arms extended
Upon the cross of life.

Everything Hymnal

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