The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

With Hallowed Mirth

Words: Words: Lætabundus, A Sequence from the Salisbury Gradual, with notes
Erroneously attributed to S. Bernard of Clairvaux (died 1153)
Translation by
J. D. Chambers

Two tunes: “Laetabundus” (Ancient Plain Song) and “Wenden Lofts” (Arthur H. Brown)
Meter: 774 774 (Irregular)

Compare: Faithful People (Terry, A Medieval Carol Book)

Source: Arthur Henry Brown, ed., The Altar Hymnal (London: Griffith, Farrar, Okeden & Welsh, 1885), #8, p. 26.

1. With hallowed mirth,
Sing all ye faithful choirs on earth
The King of Kings
From a maiden's bosom springing,
O wonder rare!

2. Wisdom”s Angel, He is come
Issuing from a Virgin's womb;
Sun from a Star!
Sun which never doth decline,
Star which evermore doth shine,
Bright ever are.

3. As a Planet shoots its ray,
So her Mighty Son to-day
That Virgin bare.
Neither Planet by its beam,
Nor by Son defiled we deem
That Mother fair.

4. Substance of the Higher, He
Girt with human flesh to be,
For us, doth bear.
Lebanon's tall Cedar bends,
Like to hyssop made, descends
Our vale to share.

5. Song Esaias sang of old,}
Song which Judah oft retold,}
Yet she ne'er the truth will hold.
In blindness drear.
Ah! If she will not believe}
Prophets, let her still receive}
Oracles which sybils weave,
Gentiles declare.

6. O hapless Israel! haste; }
Now believe! for why abased}
Should ye thus in ruin waste,
Race of despair.
Him! Whom Holy Writ of old}
God, the Eternal Son, foretold,}
In His Mother's arms, behold!
Before you there!

Sheet Music from The Altar Hymnal
In both cases, the tune given is for the first verse only.

“Laetabundus” (Ancient Plain Song)
MIDI / Noteworthy Composer / PDF

“Wenden Lofts” (Arthur H. Brown)
MIDI / Noteworthy Composer / PDF


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