The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Of the Father's Heart Begotten

A Christmas Processional

Version 4

Words: Corde Natus Ex Parentis, Marcus Aurelius Clemens Prudentius (348-405)
Trans. Roby Furley Davis.

Music: "Divinum Mysterium," Sanctus trope, 11th Century
MIDI / Noteworthy Composer / PDF / XML

Source: The English Hymnal (London: Oxford University Press, 1906), #613, pp. 790-1

1. Of the Father’s heart begotten
    Ere the world from chaos rose,
He is Alpha: from that Fountain,
    All that is and hath been flows;
He is Omega, of all things
    Yet to come the mystic Close,
        Evermore and evermore.

2. By his word was all created;
    He commanded and ’twas done;
Earth and sky and boundless ocean,
    Universe of three in one,
All that sees the moon’s soft radiance,
    All that breathes beneath the sun,
        Evermore and evermore.

3. He assumed this mortal body,
    Frail and feeble, doomed to die,
That the race from dust created
    Might not perish utterly,
Which the dreadful Law had sentenced
    In the depths of hell to lie,
        Evermore and evermore.

4. O how blest that wondrous birthday,
    When the Maid the curse retrieved,
Brought to birth mankind’s salvation,
    By the Holy Ghost conceived,
And the Babe, the world’s Redeemer,
    In her loving arms received,
        Evermore and evermore.

5. This is he, whom seer and sybil
    Sang in ages long gone by;
This is he of old revealed
    In the page of prophecy;
Lo! he comes, the promised Saviour;
    Let the world his praises cry!
        Evermore and evermore.

6. Sing, ye heights of heaven, his praises;
    Angels and Archangels, sing!
Wheresoe’er ye be, ye faithful,
    Let your joyous anthems ring,
Every tongue his name confessing,
    Countless voices answering,
        Evermore and evermore.

7. Hail! thou Judge of souls departed;
    Hail! of all the living King!
On the Father's right hand throned,
    Through his courts thy praises ring,
Till at lest for all offences
    Righteous judgement thou shalt bring,
        Evermore and evermore.

At the entrance into the Choir
8. Now let old and young uniting
    Chant to thee harmonious lays
Maid and matron hymn thy glory,
    Infant lips their anthem raise,
Boys and girls together singing
    With pure heart their song of praise,
        Evermore and evermore.

9. Let the storm and summer sunshine,
    Gliding stream and sounding shore,
Sea and forest, frost and zephyr,
    Day and night their Lord alone;
Let creation join to laud thee
    Through the ages evermore,
        Evermore and evermore. Amen.

Translations of the Latin lyrics include:


Also found in Dearmer, Williams and Shaw, eds., Songs of Praise (London: Oxford University Press, 1931, 1959, #384, p. 471, in six verses. They note: "This hymn may be begun at verse 4." Their verse four is verse six here: "Sing, ye heights of heaven, his praises."

Print Page Return Home Page Close Window

If you would like to help support Hymns and Carols of Christmas, please click on the button below and make a donation.

Related Hymns and Carols