The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

 An Infant Lay Within A Shed

Ach! lieber Herre Jesu Christ

German words (by Heinrich v. Loufenberg, before A.D. 1430) Englished, and Melody (of the XV Cent., in the Phrygian Mode) harmonized by the Rev. G. R. Woodward.

Notes and Source: George Ratcliffe Woodward, ed., The Cowley Carol Book For Christmas, Easter, and Ascensiontide, First Series (London: A. R. Mowbray & Co., Ltd, 1901, Revised and Expanded Edition), Carol #35

1. An Infant lay within a shed,
Where ox and ass were tied and fed;
hard by there stood a Maiden mild,
Saint Mary, mother to the Child.

Refrain
My God, my Lord Jesus,
'Tis He was cradled thus.

2. With voices sweet in awe to Him
There sung a Quire of Seraphim,
"Praise, worship, glory," loud they cry,
"To God whose kingdom fills the sky." Refrain

3. The herds, when they thereof heard say,
Anon with gladness went their way
To Bethlem; when they found Him there,
That noble Child, full fain they were. Refrain

4. A bright star at the self-same tide
Was by the three good kings espied:
Afar from Eastern land they fare;
A goodly present each doth bear. Refrain

5. Before yon Babe, of high degree,
They kneel and pray on bended knee.
Presenting gifts in reverence,
Of gold, and myrrh, and frankincense. Refrain

6. Then Herod King, in mood unmild,
Assayed to slay the royal Child:
Fell many a babe at his command,
But Christ was safe in Egypt-land. Refrain

7. When thirty years were fully past
This Infant, He was cross'd at last,
Was dead, and buried tomb within,
That man eternal life might win. Refrain

8. But, on the third day, nothing else,
He rose again, as Gospel tells:
Ascended to His Father-land,
There sitteth He at God's right hand. Refrain

Sheet Music from George Ratcliffe Woodward, ed., The Cowley Carol Book For Christmas, Easter, and Ascensiontide, First Series (London: A. R. Mowbray & Co., Ltd, 1902, Revised and Expanded Edition 1929), Carol #35
MIDI / Noteworthy Composer / PDF

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