The X Commandments (John Farmer)

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  • (Posted 2017-10-10)   CPDL #46697:   
Editor: Paul Cienniwa (submitted 2017-10-10).   Score information: Letter, 16 pages, 2.71 MB   Copyright: Personal
Edition notes: Based on a tune from the 1561 Genevan Psalter, Farmer's setting appears as only the first verse of the 1592 versification. This edition takes liberty with phrase endings, changing them from whole notes to half notes for more rhythmic verve. The final "Amen" is the editor's. Because of its length, the editor recommends alternating verses between reduced and full choir.
  • (Posted 2016-09-17)   CPDL #41154:        (Finale 2012)
Editor: André Vierendeels (submitted 2016-09-17).   Score information: A4, 2 pages, 59 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes: MusicXML source file is in compressed .mxl format.

General Information

Title: The X Commandments
Composer: John Farmer
Lyricist:

Number of voices: 4vv   Voicing: STTB
Genre: SacredMotet

Language: English
Instruments: A cappella

Published: 1592

Description: This tune from Genevan Psalter, 1561. Farmer's harmonization first published in The Whole Booke of Psalmes (Thomas Este) in 1592.

External websites:

Original text and translations

English.png English text

Hark Israel and what I say,
give heed to understand,
I am the Lord thy God that brought,
thee out of Egypt land,
even from the house wherein thou didst,
in thraldom live a slave,
none other Gods at all before,
my presence shalt thou have.

No manner graven image shall
thou make at all to thee;
nor any figure like by thee
shall counterfaited be,
of anything in heaven above,
nor in the earth below,
nor in the waters beneath the earth,
to them thou shalt not bow.

Nor shalt them serve: the Lord thy God,
a jealous God am I,
that punish parents faults unto
the third and fourth degree.
Upon their children that me hate,
and mercy do display
to thousands of such as me love,
and my precepts obey.

The name thou of the Lord thy God
in vain shalt never use,
for him that takes his name in vain
the Lord will not excuse.
Remember that thou holy keep
the sacred sabbath day.
Six days thou labor shalt, and
do thy needful works alway.

The se'vth day is set by the Lord
thy God to rest upon;
no work then shalt thou do in it,
nay thou, nor yet thy son.
Thy daughter, servant nor thy maid,
thine ox, nor yet thine ass,
nor stranger that within thy gates
hath his abiding place.

For in six days God heav'n and earth,
and all therein did make,
and after those his rest he did
upon the se'vth day take.
Wherefore he blest the day that he
for resting did ordain,
and sacred to himself alone
appointed to remain.

Yield honor to thy parents, thy
prolong'd thy days may be
upon the land the which the Lord
thy God hath given thee.
Thou shalt not murder. Thou shalt not
commit adultery.
Thou shalt not steal nor witness false
against thy neighbor be.

Thou shalt not covet house that to
thy neighbor doth belong,
nor covet shalt in having of
his wife to him do wrong.
Nor his manservant, nor his maid,
nor ox, nor ass of his,
nor any other thing that to
thy neighbor proper is.