The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

From Church To Church

For Christmas

Latin Text: Congaudeat turba fidelium

Words: From an 11th Century Manuscript.
Translator: Rev. John Mason Neale who notes "Of the 11th century. The English words and the refrain 'In Bethlehem' are in close accordance with the original."

Music: Hypo-Dorian Mode adapted by Rev. Thomas Helmore from Piae Cantiones, 1582.

Source: Collected Hymns, Sequences and Carols (London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1914), from John Mason Neale and Thomas Helmore, Carols for Christmas-tide (London: Novello, 1853).

1. From church to church the bells' glad tidings run:
A Virgin hath conceiv'd, and borne a Son
                                        In Bethlehem.

2. And Angel-hosts, the midnight of His Birth,
Sang "Glory be to God, and peace on earth,"
                                        In Bethlehem.

3. "Now go we forth, and see this wondrous thing,"
The Shepherds said, "and seek the new-born King"
                                        In Bethlehem.

4. Then Herod sought the Royal Son to slay,
Who rather should have come to kneel and pray
                                        In Bethlehem.

5. The Star went leading on from East to West:
The Wise men follow'd, till they saw it rest
                                        In Bethlehem.

6. Their frankincense, and myrrh, and gold they bring,
To hail the God, the Mortal, and the King,
                                        In Bethlehem.

7. With threefold gifts the Threefold God three praise,
Who thus vouchsaf'd the sons of man to raise,
                                        In Bethlehem.

Graphic Line

Sheet Music from John Mason Neale and Thomas Helmore, Carols for Christmas-tide: The Condensed Vocal Parts (London: Novello, 1854), pp. 22-26.

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Sheet Music from Carol 679, Rev. Charles Lewis Hutchins, Carols Old and Carols New (Boston: Parish Choir, 1916)

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Sheet Music from George Ratcliffe Woodward, The Cowley Carol Book, First Series (London: A. R. Mowbray & Co., Ltd., 1902, Revised and Expanded Edition 1929), Carol #7, First And Second Tunes
First Tune: MIDI / Noteworthy Composer / PDF
Second Tune: MIDI / Noteworthy Composer / PDF

Sheet Music: George Ratcliffe Woodward, Piae Cantiones: A Collection of Church & School Song, chiefly Ancient Swedish, originally published in A.D. 1582 by Theodoric Petri of Hyland. (London: Chiswick Press for the Plainsong & Medieval Music Society, 1910).

Note From Rev. Neale.

In the notes to the first carol, "Here Is Joy For Every Age," Rev. Neale noted: "A translation, or free imitation, as are most (in this collection.)" In the Preface to the First Edition, Rev. Neale wrote that only Good King Wenceslas and Toll! Toll! are original.

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