The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Christians, Awake! Salute The Happy Morn

Version 2
Compare: Christians, Awake! Salute The Happy Morn - Version 1

Words: John Byrom (1692-1763)

Music: "Yorkshire," John Wainright (1723-1768), 1750.
MIDI / Noteworthy Composer / PDF

Source: Davies Gilbert, Some Ancient Christmas Carols. London: John Nichols And Son, Second Edition, 1823, Carol #20, pp. 62-64.

1. Christians, awake! salute the happy morn
Whereon the Saviour of the World1 was born;
Rise to adore the mystery of love,
Which hosts of Angels chanted from above:
With them the joyful tidings first begun,
Of God incarnate and the Virgin's Son.

2. Then to the watchful Shepherds it was told,
Who heard the angelic Herald's voice, "Behold!
"I bring glad tidings of a Saviour's birth,
"To you and all the Nations upon earth:
"This day hath God fulfill'd his promised word;
"This day is born a Saviour, Christ the Lord!

3. "In David's City, Shepherds, ye shall find
"The Long-foretold Redeemer of Mankind!
"Wrapt up in swaddling clothes, the Babe divine"
"Lies in a manger this shall be the2 sign."
He spake, and straightway the Celestial Choir
In hymns of joy unknown before conspire.

4. The praises of redeeming love they sang,
And Heaven's whole Orb with hallelujahs rang;
God's highest glory was their anthem still;
Peace upon earth, and mutual good will.
To Bethlehem straight th'enlighten'd Shepherds ran,
To see the wonder God had wrought for man.

5. And found, with Joseph and the blessed Maid,
Her Son, the Saviour, in a manger laid.
Amazed, the wondrous story they proclaim,
The first Apostles of his infant's fame;
While Mary keeps and ponders in her heart
The heavenly visions which the Swains impart.

6. They to their flocks, still praising God, return,
And their glad hearts within their bosoms burn.
Let us, like these good Shepherds, then employ
Our grateful voices to proclaim the joy;
Like Mary, let us ponder in our mind
God's wondrous love in saving lost mankind.

7. Artless and watchful as these favour'd Swains,
While virgin meekness in the heart remains,
Trace we the Babe that has retriev'd our loss,
From his poor manger to his bitter cross;
Treading his steps, assisted by his grace,
Till man's first heavenly state again takes place.

8. Then may we hope, the angelic thrones among,
To sing redeem'd a glad triumphal song.3
He that was born upon this joyful day.
Around us all his glory shall display;
Sav'd by his love, incessant we shall sing
Of angels and of angel-man the King.4

Also found in A Selection of Hymns for Christmas Day, 1814, To Be Sung at the Methodist New Chapel, Waltham Street, Hull, (Hull: Topping & Dazson, 1814), Hymn #1, pp. 4-5, in six verses omitting verses five and six above.

Also found in G. Walters, A Good Christmas Box (Dudley: G. Walters, 1847, Reprinted by Michael Raven, 2007), pp. 57-58. Differences noted:

1. Mankind. Return

2. Your. Return

3. Glad and joyful song. Return

4. Eternal praise to God, our heav'nly King! Return

Sheet Music from Davies Gilbert, Some Ancient Christmas Carols. London: John Nichols And Son, Second Edition, 1823, Carol #20.

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The version given by Gilbert is much closer to the original poem created by Byrom, Christmas Day For Dolly:

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