Henry Balfour Gardiner
(7 November 1877 – 28 June 1950) was an English musician, composer, and teacher. His best-known work
(1908), a setting of the Compline hymn
is a lush, romantic work for eight-part choir and organ, of dense
harmonies. For most of the time, it sits in four parts, though the
treble, alto, tenor, and bass parts all subdivide at various points. It
is considered a classic of the English choral repertoire and is still
regularly performed as an anthem at
Te Lucis Ante Terminum
|Original Latin text||English translation|
Te lucis ante terminum,
rerum Creator, poscimus,
ut solita clementia,
sis praesul ad custodiam.
Procul recedant somnia,
et noctium phantasmata:
hostemque nostrum comprime,
ne polluantur corpora.
Praesta, Pater omnipotens,
per Iesum Christum Dominum,
qui tecum in perpetuum
regnat cum Sancto Spiritu.
To thee before the close of day,
Creator of the world, we pray
That, with thy wonted favour, thou
Wouldst be our guard and keeper now.
From all ill dreams defend our sight,
From fears and terrors of the night;
Withhold from us our ghostly foe,
That spot of sin we may not know.
O Father, that we ask be done,
Through Jesus Christ, thine only Son,
Who, with the Holy Ghost and thee,
Doth live and reign eternally.