The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Away With Sorrow's Sigh

On The Nativity: At Midnight.

I will not rest until the righteousness thereof go forth as brightness,
and the salvation thereof as a lamp that burneth.
– Isaiah lxii.

Words: Jam desinant suspiria,  Charles Coffin  (1676-1749), Paris Breviary, 1736

Translation: Isaac Williams, 1839

Music: Unknown

Meter: 6 6 6 6 12

Source: Isaac Williams, Hymns Translated from the Parisian Breviary (London: J.G.F. & J. Rivington, 1839), pp. 53-55.

    Away with sorrow's sigh, 
    Our prayers are heard on high, 
    And through Heav'n's crystal door, 
    On this our earthly floor 
Comes meek-eyed Peace to walk with poor mortality.

    In dead of night profound 
    There breaks a seraph sound 
    Of never-ending morn,— 
    The Lord of glory born 
Within a holy grot on this our sullen ground. 

    Now with that shepherd crowd, 
    If it might be allow'd, 
    We fain would enter there 
    With awful hastening fear, 
And kiss that cradle chaste in reverend worship bow'd. 

    O sight of strange surprise, 
    That fills our gazing eyes, 
    A manger coldly strew'd, 
    And swaddling bands so rude, 
A leaning mother poor, and child that helpless lies. 

    Art Thou, O wondrous sight, 
    Of lights the very Light, 
    Who holdest in Thy hand 
    The sky and sea and land, 
Who than the glorious Heavens art more exceeding bright.'

    Tis so;—faith darts before, 
    And through the cloud drawn o'er, 
    She sees the God of all, 
    Where Angels prostrate fall, 
Adoring tremble still, and trembling, still adore.

    No thunders round Thee break, 
    Yet doth Thy silence speak 
    From that Thy Teacher's seat 
    To us around Thy feet, 
To shun what flesh desires, what flesh abhors to seek.

    Within us, Babe Divine, 
    Be born, and make us Thine; 
    Within our souls reveal 
    Thy love and power to heal, 
Be born, and make our hearts Thy cradle and Thy shrine.

Editor's Note:

Also found in The Book of Christmas Hymns (London: T. Nelson and Sons, 1868), pp. 49-51.

Also found in Roundell Palmer, ed., The Book of Praise. Boston: Sever, Francis, & Co., 1870, # XXX, pp. 34-35.

See: Let Sighing Cease And Woe - Version 1, Let Sighing Cease And Woe - Version 2, God From On High Hath Heard; See Also Hark! On The Midnight Air

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