The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

The Child Is Born In Bethlehem

For Christmas

Words and Music: Puer natus in Bethlehem, a 14th Century Latin Hymn
See Puer natus in Bethlehem from Dreves, with notes.

Translation By Elizabeth Charles, Voice of Christian Life in Song, 1858, p. 173. Text only.

Music: "Puer Natus in Bethlehem"
MIDI / Noteworthy Composer / PDF

Meter: 8,8

1. The Child is born in Bethlehem,
Sing and be glad, Jerusalem!

2. Low on the manger lieth He,
Whose reign no bound or end can see.

3. That ox and ass their Owner know,
And own their Lord, thus stooping low.

4. The kings bring from the furthest East,
Gold, frankincense, and myrrh to Christ.

5. That lowly dwelling entering,
Reverent they greet the new-born King.

6. Born of a virgin mother mild,
Seed of the woman, wondrous Child!

7. Born of our blood, without the sin,
The serpent's venom left therein.

8. Like us, in flesh of human frame,
Unlike in sin alone He came;

9. That He might make us, sinful men,
Like God, and like Himself again.

10. In this, our Christmas happiness,
The Lord, with festive hymns we bless:

11. The Holy Trinity be praised,
To God our ceaseless thanks be raised!

Editor's Note:

According to Dr. Julian, "When repeated in the People's Hymnal, 1867, it was slightly altered, and the refrain “Alleluia" was added to each stanza" for example:

1. The Child is born in Bethlehem,
Sing and be glad, Jerusalem!
                                Alleluia!

The carol was not otherwise changed. Source: The People's Hymnal. Sixth Edition (London: J. Masters and Co., 1877), #35, p. 15. Text Only; No Music. I did not locate a copy of Puer natur in Bethlehem in the unrelated collection by Edmund S. Lorenz, ed., The People's Hymnal (Dayton, Ohio: W. J. Shuey, 1890).

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