Handwriting on the Wall


Shaw, Knowles, 1834-1878, “Handwriting on the Wall,” Appalachian State University Libraries Digital Collections, accessed April 14, 2024, https://omeka.library.appstate.edu/items/show/31577.

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Handwriting on the Wall


This item is part of the I. G. Greer Folksong Collection which consists of more than 300 individual song titles and their variants as collected by Isaac Garfield Greer (1881-1967) from informants, primarily in Ashe, Wilkes and Watauga counties. The collection includes manuscripts, typescript transcriptions produced by Dr. Greer’s clerical staff, and handwritten musical notations. Songs range from traditional Child Ballads, traditional English and Scottish ballads as well as their American variants, to 19th century popular music to musical compositions of local origin.


Gospel music--United States
Judgment of God--Songs and music
Daniel (Biblical figure)--Songs and music
Belshazzar--Songs and music


Shaw, Knowles, 1834-1878


W. L. Eury Appalachian Collection, Appalachian State University


Greer, I. G. (Isaac Garfield), 1881-1967







Spatial Coverage


The Handwriting on the Wall (Sanky)

At the feast of Belshazzar & a thousand of His Lords
While they drank from golden vessels, as the book of truth records
In the night as they reveled, in the royal palace hall
They seized with consternation – I was the hand upon the wall
Tis the hand of God on the wall (writing on the wall)
Tis the hand of '' '' '' '' ( '' '' '' '' )
Shall the record be found wanting
Or shall it be found trusting
While the hand is writing on the wall

See the brave captive Daniel, as he stood before the throng
And rebuked the haughty monarch for his mighty deeds of wrong
As he read out the writing – twas the doom of one & all
For the kingdom now was finished – said the hand upon the wall

See the faith, zeal & courage that would dare to do the right
Which the spirit gave to Daniel – ‘twas the secret of his might
In his home in Judea, or a captive in the hall
He understood the writing of his God upon the wall.

So our deeds are recorded – There’s a hand that’s writing now
Sinner give your heart to Jesus – to His royal mandates bow,
For the day is approaching – it must come to one & all
When the sinner consternation will be written on the wall.

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