The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Why Should The Cruel Herod Fear?

For the Epiphany

Words: Crudelis Herodes, Deum
The Roman Breviary form of Hostis Herodis
Derived from Paean Alphabeticus de Christo, with notes, by Caelius Sedulius, 5th Century

Translation: Robert Corbet Singleton
Original 1858 title was Why, Cruel Herod, Dost Thou Fear

Source: Robert Corbet Singleton and Edwin George Monk, ed., The Anglican hymn book. Second Edition. (Novello, Ewer, 1871), No. 73.

1. Why should the cruel Herod fear
That Christ, the King, is coming near?
He takes no realms of earth away,
Who gives the realms of heavenly day.

2. The Magi track the leading star,
Which thehy had witnessed from afar;
To Light by light they onward press,
And by their gift their God confess.

3. In waters of the crystal flood,
Lo! dips the Holy Lamb of God:
The sins, which ne'er in Him were traced,
From us, by washing, He effaced.

4. A wondrous Power is brought to sight:
Lo! water reddens 'neath the light!
And, at the word of Force Divine,
Its nature changes into wine.

5 All glory be to Jesu's Name,
A bright Epiphany Who came;
To Father, Spirit, high we raise,
From age to age, unceasing praise.

Sheet Music from Robert Corbet Singleton and Edwin George Monk, ed., The Anglican hymn book. Second Edition. (Novello, Ewer, 1871), No. 73.

why_should_cruel_herod_fear-monk-1871.jpg (88431 bytes)

Note: Made for and 1st published in Singleton and Monk's Anglican Hymn Book, 1868, No. 58. In the 2nd ed., 1871, No. 73, it was altered to, "Why should the cruel Herod fear?" The only scanned copy of the 1868 edition skipped the pages that contained No. 58 & 59.

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