by Robert Williams (1781-1821)
text by Charles Wesley (1707-1788)
“Hail the Day that Sees Him Rise”
Episcopal 1940 Hymnbook #104, played by Andrew Remillard
LLANFAIR is usually attributed to Welsh singer Robert Williams (b. Mynydd Ithel, Anglesey, Wales, 1781;
d. Mynydd Ithel, 1821), whose manuscript, dated July 14, 1817, included the tune. Williams lived on the
island of Anglesey. A basket weaver with great innate musical ability, Williams, who was blind, could
write out a tune after hearing it just once. He sang hymns at public occasions and was a composer of hymn tunes.
LLANFAIR was first published with a harmonization by John Roberts in John Parry’s Peroriaeth Hyfryd (Sweet Music)
(1837). The tune has been associated with the Wesley/Cotterill text since its publication with the text in The
English Hymnal (1906). LLANFAIR is actually a common Welsh name, but some scholars believe that in this case the
tune’s name refers to the Montgomery County [sic Anglesey County] village in Wales where Williams was born.
(The Wesley/Cotterill text is “Hail the Day That Sees Him Rise.”)