The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Caelestis ales nuntiat

The Annunciation of our Lady

Words: Jean de Santeuil (1630-1697)
Translation: The Angel Spake The Word by Edward Caswall

Source: Hymni Sacri et Novi. Autore Santolio Victorino. (Paris, 1689), pp. 2-3 .
"Santolio Victorino" was a pseudonym of Jean de Santeuil.

1. Caelestis ales nuntiat
Implenda mox mysteria :
Virtute foecundâ Deus
Illapsus implet Virginem.

2. Qualis stupendo gloria
Te, Virgo, de partu manet !
Conceptus in tuo finu
Natus Deo, nunc est tuus.

3. De virginali sanguine,
Quem nulla labes infiat,
Fingente sancto Spiritu,
Christi caro compingitur.

4. Nobis per hanc mortalibus
Lactescit esca caelitum :
Nos paseit infantes homo ,
Qui pascit Angelos Deus.

5. Mundo Redemptor qui venis,
Fili, tibi laus maxima,
Cum Patre, nec tibi minor
Laus, utriusque Spiritus.

Editor's Note.

The author's name appears with various spellings including Jean-Baptiste de Santeul, Jean-Baptiste de Santeuil, Jean-Baptiste de Santeüil, Jean Baptiste Santeul, Jean de Santeuil, and Jean de Santeul. His pseudonum was Santolio Victorino.

Note from John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology. Second Revised Edition with New Supplement. (1892, 1907), p. 240.

Caelestis ales nuntiat. Jean Baptiste de Santeuil. [Annunciation.] 1st pub. in his Hymni Sacri et Novi, 1689, p. 2, and again in the same, 1098, p. 87, in 5 stanzas of 4 lines. In 1736 it was included in the revised Paris Breviary. Also reprinted in Cardinal Newman's Hymni Ecclesić, 1838 and 1865. Tr. as :—

1. The Angel Spake The Word, by Edward Caswall — his quoted opening line being, "Supernus ales nuntiat," — in his Lyra Catholica, 1849, p. 267; and again in his Hymns, &c, 1873, p. 170. This is given in the Appendix to the Hymnal Noted, and in the St. John's Hymnal (Aberdeen), &c.

2. Hail blessed morn, when forth from heaven, by W. Cooke, made for the Hymnary, 1872, and given with the signature " A. C. C."

Translations not in Common Use :—

1. The herald light from Heav'n on golden wing. I. Williams. 1839.

2. The swift-winged herald from on high. J. D. Chambers, ii. 1866. [J. J.]

Editor's Note:

Dr. Julian's entry was for "Coelestis ales nuntiat." However, in Santeuil's Hymni Sacri et Novi, it begins "Caelestis ales nuntiat." Dr. Julian's entry above has been corrected accordingly.

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