Hark! The Herald Angels Sing

Christmas song
First published in 1739
Words by the English hymnwriter Charles Wesley

First lines in the song:
Hark the herald angels sing
Glory to the newborn King!
Peace on earth and mercy mild


Hark! The Herald Angels Sing guitar tab and notes (pdf)

tabs tabs & notes


Hark! The Herald Angels Sing instrumental guitar (mp3)

Hark! The Herald Angels Sing - guitar tab, notes, chords and lyrics

“Hark! The Herald Angels Sing” is a well-known Christmas carol. The lyrics is written by Charles Wesley and the music is adapted from a composition by the German composer and pianist Felix Mendelssohn. The chords changes are many, which makes the song quite challenging; the melody on the other hand is rather simple.

The music transcriptions of the song with tabs and notes are available for download as PDFs. It's free for personal use only.

Hark! The Herald Angels Sing (full accompaniment)

"Hark! The Herald Angels Sing" for guitar with full accompaniment. Free download in pdf-file and audio.

Hark! The Herald Angels Sing guitar accompaniment

Hark! The Herald Angels Sing (only melody)

"Hark! The Herald Angels Sing" tablature notation for guitar. This is a shortened version (full versions for only melody and with accompaniment can be downloaded as pdf).

Hark! The Herald Angels Sing tabs

Tips on how to learn this song

The melody is relatively easy to play since it involves many open strings and is covered by the first four frets. Notice that some bars are identical: bars 1-2 and 5-6; bars 13-15 and 17-19.

Lyrics and chords

Hark! The Herald Angels Sing chords in the key of G
Verse 1:
(G)Hark the her(D)ald (G)angels sing,
(G)"Glory (C)to the (D)newborn (G)King!
(G)Peace on earth (D)and (G)mercy mild,
(D)God and (A)sinners (D)re(A)con(D)ciled."
(G)Joyful, all ye (C)nations (D)rise,
(G)Join the triumph (C)of the (D)skies.
(Am)With the angel(E7)ic (Am)host (E7)pro(Am)claim:
(D)"Christ is (G)born in Beth(D)le(G)hem."
(Am)Hark! The her(E7)ald (Am)an(E7)gels (Am)sing,
(D)"Glory (G)to the new(D)born (G)King!"

Verse 2:
Christ by highest heav'n adored,
Christ the everlasting Lord!
Late in time behold Him come,
Offspring of a Virgin's womb.
Veiled in flesh the Godhead see,
Hail the incarnate Deity.
Pleased as man with man to dwell
Jesus, our Emmanuel
Hark! The herald angels sing,
"Glory to the newborn King!"

Verse 3:
Hail the heav'n-born Prince of Peace!
Hail the Son of Righteousness!
Light and life to all He brings
Ris'n with healing in His wings.
Mild He lays His glory by,
Born that man no more may die.
Born to raise the sons of earth
Born to give them second birth
Hark! The herald angels sing,
"Glory to the newborn King!"

Poetic and archaic words:
hark = hear

ye = you

It may be easier to learn the song if the chords in the long verses are split up to a few shorter progressions. These five progressions are linked together throughout the verses:

There are possibilities to change to key by using a capo. These are the keys that the song would transpose in depending on which fret the capo is put:

Key, time, tuning and tempo

Information about "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing" considering musical key, time signature, tuning and bpm.

Key signature music symbol


The (tab) version of Hark! The Herald Angels Sing is played in the key of G.

Time signature music symbol

Time signature

The song is played in 4/4 tempo (counted one, two, three, four for each measure).

Tuning overview


The song is normally played in standard tuning (EADGBE).

BPM symbol and numbers

Tempo (BPM)

The tempo in beats per minute is 110 for the presented version.