by Robert Seymour Bridges (1844 - 1930)

Man, born to toil, in his labour...
Language: English 
Man, born to toil, in his labour rejoiceth; 
His voice is heard in the morn: 
He armeth his hand and sallieth forth 
To engage with the generous teeming earth, 
And drinks from the rocky rills 
The laughter of life. 
Or else, in crowded cities gathering close, 
He traffics morn and eve 
In thronging market-halls; 
Or within echoing walls 
Of busy arsenals 
Weldeth the stubborn iron to engines vast ; 
Or tends the thousand looms 
Where, with black smoke o'ercast, 
The land mourns in deep glooms. 
Life is toil, and life is good : 
There in loving brotherhood 
Beateth the nation's heart of fire. 
Strife ! Strife ! The strife is strong ! 
There battle thought and voice, and spirits conspire 
In joyous dance around the tree of life, 
And from the ringing choir 
Riseth the praise of God from hearts in tuneful song. 

About the headline (FAQ)

First published in Cornhill Magazine, September 1898


Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive):

  • by Gustav Holst (1874 - 1934), "Man born to toil", published 1927 [SATB chorus, organ, and handbells ad libitum], anthem [ sung text not verified ]
  • by John (Nicholson) Ireland (1879 - 1962), "Man, born to toil, in his labour rejoiceth", 1947-48, first performed 1948 [chorus and instrumental ensemble], from the cantata Man in his labour rejoiceth, no. 4, note: for 9 choirs, 4 pipe bands, and 8 colliery brass bands; the brass band parts were lost and replaced by new ones recreated by Andrew Duncan for a new edition published in 2012 by The Music Company (UK) Ltd [ sung text not verified ]

This text (or a part of it) is used in a work
Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

This text was added to the website: 2009-01-29
Line count: 23
Word count: 143