The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Exortum Est in Love and Lysse

Words: English Traditional, About 1450

Source: Edith Rickert, Ancient English Christmas Carols: 1400-1700 (London: Chatto & Windus, 1914), pp. 166-7.

Nowell sing we, both all and some
Now Rex pacificus is come.

1. Exortum Est in love and lysse.1
Now Christ His grace He gan us gysse,2
And with His body us bought to bliss,
    Both all and some.

2. De Fructu ventris of Mary bright,
Both God and man in her alight,
Out of disease He did us dight,
    Both all and some.

3. Puer natus to us was sent,
To bliss us bought, fro bale us blent,3
And else to woe we had ywent,
    Both all and some.

4. Lux fulgebit with love and light,
In Mary mild His pennon4 pight,5
In her took kind with manly might,
    Both all and some.

5. Gloria Tibi ay and bliss,
God unto His grace He us wysse,6
The rent of heaven that we not miss,
    Both all and some.


1. Delight. Return

2. Guide Return

3. Turned. Return

4. Terry has "pennant." Return

5. Placed. Return

6. Guide. Return

Editor's Note:

Rickert gives the following translations:

Also found in Richard Runciman Terry, Two Hundred Folk Carols (London: Burns Oates & Washbourne Limited, 1933), Carol #185, pp. 28-29 who cites his source of words and music from the Selden MS. (Selden MS. B.26 f.7.), Bodleian Library, Oxford.

Sheet Music from Richard Runciman Terry, Two Hundred Folk Carols (London: Burns Oates & Washbourne Limited, 1933), #185, pp. 28-29; Mode I.

185a-Nowel_Sing.jpg (93546 bytes) 185b-Nowel_Sing.jpg (70152 bytes)

 Sheet Music from Sir Richard Runciman Terry, A Medieval Carol Book: The Melodies Chiefly from MMS. in the Bodleian Library, Oxford, and in the Library of Trinity College, Cambridge (London: Burns Oates & Washbourne Ltd., 1932), Carol #16, pp. 32-33.

AMCB45.jpg (594201 bytes) AMCB46.jpg (384302 bytes)

The Selden Manuscript was the source for A Medieval Carol Book by Rev. Terry. Scans of the manuscript pages are on-line at the Bodleian Library; see Selden MS B26 (opens in a new window at an exterior site).

Although it has a similar title, Nowel Sing We Now All And Sum is a very different carol.

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