The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

What Joy For Mary, Blessed Maid

For Christmas

"Ye ferste joye as I zan telle
Wt Mary met seynt Gab'elle,
Heyl Mary i grete ye welle,
Wt fadr and sone and holy gost."

See: The Ferst Joye As I Zu Telle ("Joyes Fyve") (Sandys) and The Five Joys (Rickert)

Words: Rev. W. J. Irons, D.D.

Music: Arthur H. Brown

Source: Arthur H. Brown, ed., In Excelsis Gloria-Carols for Christmastide (London: Thomas Bosworth & Co., 1885), Carol #16, pp. 32-33.

1. What joy for Mary, blessed Maid,
God's Angel came to tell!
O full of Grace Divine, he said,
The Shining Gabriel;
The Shining Gabriel,
And all shall share the joy with thee,

    Chorus:
    Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghose,
    One God Eternally.

2. The Lord is with thee, blessed Maid,
The LORD shall be thy Child;
Behold Thy handmaid, Mary said,
To bear the Undefiled;
To bear the Undefiled,
And all shall hail the joy for thee,
     Cho. Praise Father, &c.

3. What joy to Mary, Mother-Maid,
Beneath o'ershadowing GOD;
All joy for while she knelt and prayed,
Christ came to her abode!
Christ came to her abode,
And all shall hail the joy for thee,
     Cho. Praise Father, &c.

4. What joy and mystery, Mary, Maid,
Touched thee with mingled smart
When in the temple Simeon said,
A sword shall pierce thy heart!
A sword shall pierce thy heart,
And all shall watch that mystery,
     Cho. Praise Father, &c.

5. What grief of Heaven, O Mary, Maid,
To see thy Son despised
More than thyself when scoffers said
Their taunts, all undisguised ;
Their taunts, all undisguised,
And yet that sorrow brings our joy,
     Cho. Praise Father, &c.

6. How Angels watched thee, Mary, Maid,
And soothed thee in thy loss !
And Gabriel, not in light arrayed,
Yet near thee at the Cross ;
Yet near thee at the Cross,
And all shall hail that mystery!
    Cho. Praise Father, &c.

Sheet Music from Arthur H. Brown, ed., In Excelsis Gloria-Carols for Christmastide (London: Thomas Bosworth & Co., 1885), Carol #16, pp. 32-33.

what a joy for mary pp 32-33.jpg (113962 bytes)

Notes.

Also found in Richard Robert Chope, ed., Carols for use in church during Christmas and Epiphany (1875), #111, Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary, pp. 208-209, six verses plus sheet music. Rev. Chope also had this note on p. xxxvi:

Numeral carols were common in the olden time. The ancient Hebrew is very curious. With each number the previous numbers are repeated, so that each verse includes all the previous, like a well-known nursery carol, until at last we have the summing upó "Who knows thirteen? I know thirteen; thirteen divine emanations; twelve tribes; eleven stars (cf. Gen. xxxvi. 9); ten commandments; nine months of gestation; eight days of circumcision; seven days of the week; six books of Mishneh; five books of the Law; four holy matrons (viz., Sarah, Rebecca, Leah, Rachel); three patriarchs; two tablets of the Covenant; One is our God, Who is over heaven and earth." But it is impossible to insert in any book for use in church the "Seven Joys" or the "New Dial." The words and music here given are worthy substitutes.

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