The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Vycyce be wyld, and vertues lame

Words and Music: Traditional English

Source: Thomas Wright, Songs and Carols Now First Printed, From a Manuscript of the Fifteenth Century (London: The Percy Society, 1847), Song #76, printed verbatim from a manuscript probably owned by a professional musician, and apparently written in the latter half of the fifteenth century, circa 1471-1485.

God that sytteth in trinite,
Amend this world, if thi will it be.

Vycyce be wyld, and vertues lame;
And now be vicyce turned to game;
Therfore correccion is to blame,
            And besyd his dignite.

Pacyence hath taken a flyght;
And melady is out off syght.
Now every boy will counterfett a knyght,
            Report hym self as good as he.

Princypally among every state,
In court men thynk ther is gret bate,
And peace he stondyth at the gate,
            And morneth aftur charite.

Envy is thyk, and love thyne:
And specyally among owr kyne;
Fore love is without the dore and envy within;
            And so kyndnesse away gane fle.

Fortwen is a mervelous chaunce;
And envy causeth gret distaunce;
Both in Englond and in Fraunce
            Exilyd is benyngnyte.

Now lett us pray both on and all,
And specyally upon God call,
To end love and peace among us all,
            Among all men in christente.

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