In Die Nativitatis
Words and Music attributed to Rev. Richard Smart (or Smerte), Rector (1435-1477) of Plymtree, Devon, and vicar-choral at Exeter Cathedral (1428-ca. 1466). The time of composition was during the reigns of Henry VII or VIII; it was found in the "Ritson Manuscript," British Library, MS. Addit 5665, fol. 5, v0.
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See notes in F A Q
Nowell, nowell, nowell, nowell
Tydyngs gode y thyngke to telle.
1. The borys hede that we bryng here
Be tokeneth a prince with oute pere,
Ys born' this day to bye vs dere,
2. A bore ys a souerayn beste,
And acceptable in euõy feste,
So mote thys lord be to moste and leste,
3. This borys hede we bryng wt
In worchyp of hym that thus sprang
Of a virgyne to redresse all wrong,
Sheet Music from John Stafford Smith, Musica Antiqua. Vol. 1. (London: Printed & Sold by Preston, 1812), #22.
In this version, the first line of the first
"The boar's head that I bring here."
For notes concerning this carol, please see The Boar's Head, That We Bring Here (Husk, 1868).
Copies of this carol on this site:
The Boar's Head That We Bring Here - Ritson (1782); first publication in Ritson's Observations on Warton's History of English Poetry
The Borys Hede That We Bryng Here (Sandys, 1833, with notes) (this page)
The borys hede that we bryng here (Thomas Wright, 1841)
The Boar's Head, That We Bring Here (Husk, 1868, with notes)
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