The bittersweet Lenten hymn, My Song Is Love Unknown was written by Samuel Crossman (1624-1683), in 1664.The music is by John Ireland, (1879-1962).
It’s one of the few hymns I ever bothered to memorize. Because it is just that sweet and special a hymn.
Crossman, who was an Anglican Minister, wrote it as an expression of love for his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ – who he refers to repeatedly throughout the six stanzas as his dear friend.
Here, St Martin’s Church Choir sings three verses to devastating effect.
Here are all six verses as sung by the Choir of Chester Cathedral.
Recording from “Sing for Joy 4.
And here’s a completely different setting of the hymn by Joanne Hogg: