The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Once, As I Remember

Words: George Radcliffe Woodward

 

Music: Setting of Antururý by Charles Wood
MIDI / Noteworthy Composer / PDF

Source: Charles Wood and George Ratcliffe Woodward, eds., An Italian Carol Book (London: The Faith Press, Ltd., 1920), #1

1. Once, as I remember,
At the time of Yule,
After mid December,
When it bloweth cool,
I o'erheard a Mother
Was a-singing, 'Sweet Jesu,
    La-lullay-lu, La-lullay-lu, La-lullay-lu, La-lullay-lu.'

2. Near as man was able,
On my knee fell I,
in the Bethlem stable
Where the Babe did lie,
And the Virgin-mother
Was a-singing, 'Sweet Jesu,
    La-lullay-lu, La-lullay-lu, La-lullay-lu, La-lullay-lu.'

3. Herdmen from the prairie
Came and piped for glee
For the Babe and Mary:
King of Glory he.
Then the Virgin Mother
Fell a-singing, 'Sweet Jesu,
    La-lullay-lu, La-lullay-lu, La-lullay-lu, La-lullay-lu.'

4. Ox and ass around him,
Courtier-like, did stand:
Fair white linen bound him,
Spun by Mary's hand.
While the Virgin-mother
Was a-singing, 'Sweet Jesu,
    La-lullay-lu, La-lullay-lu, La-lullay-lu, La-lullay-lu.'

5. To this Lord, contented
To endure the cold,
Easterlings presented
Incense, myrrh and gold:
Then the Virgin-mother
Fell a-singing, 'Sweet Jesu,
    La-lullay-lu, La-lullay-lu, La-lullay-lu, La-lullay-lu.'

6. Ever among and o'er us
Angel-quire gan sing
Antiphons in chorus
To the new-born King.
Then the Virgin-mother
Fell a-singing, 'Sweet Jesu,
    La-lullay-lu, La-lullay-lu, La-lullay-lu, La-lullay-lu.'

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