The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Now Ancient Shadows Flee

Vespers Hymn for the Circumcision

Words: Debilis cessent elementa legis, from the Paris Breviary

Translation:  Robert Campbell, of Sherrington

Source: Orby Shipley, Annus Sanctus: Hymns of the Church for the Ecclesiastical Year. Vol. 1. (London and New York: Burns and Oates, 1884), pp. 34-35.

	Now ancient shadows flee, 
	Now night and terror cease ; 
Thy God, O earth, begins with thee 
	A covenant of peace. 

	He who is Light of Light, 
	The true unclouded sun, 
Bleeds to remove sad nature's blight, 
	From wrongs that we have done. 

	This day he doth bestow 
	The first-fruits of that blood, 
Which will hereafter richly flow 
	To be our cleansing flood. 

	He takes that sacred name 
	At which we bend the knee ; 
Oh, how befitting him who came 
	Our sacrifice to be. 

	The Son who gave his blood, 
	The Father of our Lord, 
The Holy Ghost    one God most good, 
	For ever be adored.

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