The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Puer nobis nascitur

For Christmas

Words: "Puer Nobis Nascitur," Authorship Unknown, Trier MS, 15th Century
Translations: See Below
Compare: Puer Nobis Nascitur-St Gregory's Hymnal

Music: "Puer Nobis Nascitur," Piae Cantiones, 1582
MIDI / Noteworthy Composer /

1. Puer nobis nascitur
Rector angelorum;
In hoc mundo pascitur
Dominus dominorum.

2. In pręsepe ponitur
Sub fœno asinorum.
Cognoverunt dominum
Christum regem cœlorum.

3. Hinc Herodes timuit -
Magno cum dolore,
Et pueros occidit,
Infantes cum livore.

4. Qui natus est ex Marie -
Die hodierna
Ducat nos cum gratia
Ad gaudia superna.

5. O et A et A et O
Cum cantibus in choro,
Cum canticis et organo,
Benedicamus domino.

Sheet Music "Carol for Children" from J. H. Hopkins, ed., Great Hymns of the Church Compiled by the Late Right Reverend John Freeman Young (New York: James Pott & Company, 1887), #56, p. 88.

"Original Melody.
Harmonized by H. R. Schrœder"

Theodoric Petri, ed., Pię Cantiones Ecclesiasticae et Scholasticae Veterum Episcoporum. (Gyphisuualdię: Augustinum Ferberum, 1582)

Sheet Music and Notes from Rev. George R. Woodward, ed., Pię Cantiones. A Collection of Church & School Song, chiefly Ancient Swedish, originally Published in A. D. 1582 by Theodoric Petri of Nyland. (London: Printed at the Chiswick Press for the Plainsong & Medieval Music Society, 1910), Carol #11, p. 15, Notes pp. 222-223.

pc-015.jpg (48648 bytes) pc-222.jpg (89985 bytes) pc-223.jpg (90310 bytes)

See: The Christmas Songs in Woodward's Pię Cantiones (1910)

Sheet Music from Richard R. Terry, Old Christmas Carols. Part One. (London: Burns, Oates & Washbourne Ltd., n.d., ca. 1923), Carol #32, p. 44.

There seems to be an issue regarding the third verse where the first two lines of the verse appear to be missing ("Hinc Herodes timuit, Magno cum tremore.")

Editor's Note:

This note is from Rev. George R. Woodward, Piae Cantiones (1910), pp. 222-223 (the images immediately above).

XI. Puer Nobis Nascitur.
At Christmas instead of Benedicamus Domino. Mone, I. No. 48, p. 64, reprints this carol from a fifteenth-century MS., No. 724 in the Stadtbibliotek at Trier [T].

Wackernagel, I, Nos. 327-331, gives give versions:

(i) from the Trier library;

(ii) from a MS. at Munchen, Cod. Lat. 5023, fifteenth century [M];

(iii) from Christ. Adolf's printed book of 1542 [A];

(iv) from J. Spangenberg of 1544 [S];

(v) from J. Leifentrit, 1567 [L] besides later forms found in the Speier, Mainz, and Paderborn song-books.

Dreves ('Analecta Hymnica,' I. p. 43) mentions the fact that Puer nobis nascitur occurs (1) in the Hohenfurth MS. of 1410 [H]; and (ii) in the Wittingau MS. of 1459 [W]. Again the great number of variations testifies to the wide use of this favourite Cantio. The order of the stanzas is irregular, and the number of verses ranges from four to seven.

Woodward then goes on to do a comparison of this version of Puer nobis nascitur with older versions. He concludes with a listing of some sources for musical settings.

The Latin lyrics above are also found in:

Sources of Latin hymns found in Piae Cantiones:

Translations Include:

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