Phos Hilaron

Phos Hilaron is the oldest surviving hymn from the primitive church. Most date it to around 300 AD. Below are the Greek, Latin and English words.


Φώς ‘ιλαρόν αγίας δόξης αθανάτου Πατρός, ουρανίου, αγίου, μάκαρος, Ιησού Χριστέ, ελθόντες επί τήν ηλίου δύσιν, ιδόντες φώς εσπερινόν, υμνούμεν Πατέρα, Υιόν, καί άγιον Πνεύμα, Θεόν, Αξιόν σε εν πάσι καιροίς υμνείσθαι φωναίς αισίαις, Υιέ Θεού, ζωήν ο διδούς, διό ο κόσμος σέ δοξάζει.


Iucunda lux tu gloriae, fons luminis de lumine, beate Iesu caelitus a Patre sancto prodiens. Fulgor diei lucidus solisque lumen occidit, et nos ad horam vesperam te confitemur cantico. Laudamus unicum Deum, Patrem potentem, Filium cum Spiritu Paraclito in Trinitas gloria. O digne linguis qui piis lauderis omni tempore, Fili Dei, te saecula vitae datorem personent. Amen.


Hail, gladdening Light, of His pure glory poured Who is th’immortal Father, heavenly, blest, Holiest of Holies–Jesus Christ our Lord!

Now we are come to the sun’s hour of rest; The lights of evening round us shine; We hymn the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit divine!

Worthiest art thou at all times to be sung With undefiled tongue, Son of our God, giver of life, alone: Therefore in all the world thy glories, Lord, thy own. Amen.

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9 thoughts on “Phos Hilaron

  1. Resting in the Light… Delighting in the Son… Content to rest in the shadow of His wing…until He comes and we behold Him face to face in all of His glory…


  2. All, Amen! I can’t add to what you have said. I just want to say that I deeply desire to live out my life with this level of devotion ever before me. I fall far short of that, but that is the desire of my heart.

    In Christ

    Mike Ratliff


  3. I am learning Koine Greek (taking a local class). It is tough, but it is a blast. I can’t wait to actually be able to read the Scriptures in their original languages!

    If anyone else ever gets the opporuntity to learn Biblical Greek, but are having doubts – definately learn it!

    I wonder how the tune to Phos Hilaron went. It’s a beautiful hymn.

    God bless,

    A. Shepherd
    The Aspiring Theologian


  4. A,

    Yes, I want very much to be able to read Koine Greek. I am stuck with Bibles that help me understand the grammer and what the words mean, but I know it’s not the same thing.

    Yes, I would like to have heard it in Greek. Chris Tomlin has a version of it, but I like these words better.

    In Christ

    Mike Ratliff


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