The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Jesu, Redemptor Onmium quem lucis

For Christmas

Jesu, Redemptor omnium quem lucis ante originem is one of two adaptations of Christe, Redemptor Omnium (see notes), 6th Century, by Urban VII in 1629 for the Tridentine Rite (Council of Trent).
Compare: Jesu, redemptor omnium Summi Parentis unice - from Chandler, 1837, with notes.

Music: "Jesu Redemptor Omnium"
MIDI / Noteworthy Composer / XML

This version appeared in the Roman Breviary, 1632

Source: Rev. Matthew Britt, O.S.B., Hymns from the Breviary and Missal (London: Burns Oates & Washbourne Ltd., 1922), pp. 100-101.

1. Jesu, Redemptor omnium,
Quem lucis ante originem
Parem paternæ gloriæ
Pater supremus edidit.

2. Tu lumen, et splendor Patris,
Tu spes perennis omnium,
Intende quas fundunt preces
Tui per orbem servuli.

3. Memento, rerum Conditor,
Nostri quod olim corporis,
Sacrata ab alvo Virginis
Nascendo, formam sumpseris.

4. Testatur hoc præsens dies,
Currens per anni circulum,
Quod solus e sinu Patris
Mundi salus adveneris.

5. Hunc astra, tellus, æquora,
Hunc omne quod cœlo subest,
Salutis Auctorem novæ
Novo salutat cantico.

6. Et nos, beata quos sacri
Rigavit unda sanguinis;
Natalis ob diem tui
Hymni tributum solvimus.

7. Jesus, tibi sit gloria,
Qui natus es de Virgine,
Cum Patre, et almo Spiritu
In sempiterna sæcula.

Translations include

Note from Rev. Matthew Britt:

Author: Ambrosian, 6th cent. Meter: Iambic dimeter. Translation by J. M. Neale, Father [Thomas J.] Potter, and the Evening Office, 1710. First line of Original Text: Christe, Redemptor Omnium. There are twenty-five translations, six of which are in the Annus Sanctus. Liturgical Use: Hymn for Vespers and Matins on Christmas Day.

1. "Jesus, the Redeemer of all, who, being the equal of the Father's glory, was begotten of the Sovereign Father before the beginning of light." The three Persons of the Holy Trinity are co-equal, co-eternal, and consubstantial.

2. "Thou light and splendor of the Father, Thou neverfailing hope of all, give ear to the prayers which Thy servants throughout the world pour forth." In the hymns, Christ is repeatedly styled, lux, jubar, lumen, and splendor Patris. Cum sit splendor gloriæ et figura substantiæ ejus (1 Heb. 1, 3).

3. "Remember, O Creator of the world, that in being born Thou didst once assume the form of our body from the sacred womb of a Virgin."

4. "The present day (the Feast of Christmas) recurring in the course of each year, bears witness to this, that Thou alone didst come forth from the bosom of the Father, the salvation of the world." Solus = Filius unigenitus.

5. "The stars, the earth, and the seas, and every creature under heaven doth greet Him with a new canticle, as the author of the new salvation." Salutis novæ: the New Law with its Sacraments and other means of grace.

6. "We also, whom the sacred stream of Thy blood hath cleansed, pay Thee the tribute of a hymn on Thy birthday."

Orby Shipley, in Annus Sanctus, described Jesu, Redemptor omnium as an Ambrosian Vespers Breviary Hymn, which was adapted from Christe, Redemptor Omnium. The six translations in Annus Sanctus are:

#23. Jesu, Our Soul's Redeeming Lord. From the Catholic Psalmist, 1859. Rev. Professor Thomas J. Potter, All Hallows College, Dublin, 1857-1858. P. 24.

#29. Lamb, Whose Blood For All Men Streamed. Robert Campbell. p. 29.

#34. Jesus, Redeemer, Ere the Light. From the Vespers Book. Very Rev. Provost F. C. Husenbeth, 1840-1841. P. 33.

#39. Jesu, the Ransomer of Man. Partly a cento from the Primers of 1685 and 1706, revised and altered; and partly original. Evening Office, 1710. Author unknown. p. 37.

O Christ, The World's Redemption (Primer, 1706)

Jesu, The Ransomer of Man (Primer, 1685)

Source: Orby Shipley, ed., Annus Sanctus - Hymns of the Church for the Ecclesiastical Year. Vol. 1. (London and New York: Burns and Oates, 1884). There is no Volume 2.


John Julian, in his Dictionary of Hymnology (1892, p. 228) observed that there were two adaptations of the hymn Christe, Redemptor Omnium, both with the same first three words: “Jesu, Redemptor Omnium.”

Christe Redemptor omnium [gentium] Ex [De] Patre. [Christmas.] This Ambrosian hymn is sometimes ascribed to St. Ambrose, but is rejected as such by the Benedictine editors of his works. (Paris Ed. 1686-90, torn, iii; Migne, torn. 17.) It is known in three forms. These are, 1. The Original; ii. The Roman Breviary text; iii. and the Paris Breviary text.

i. Original Text.

Christe Redemptor omnium Ex Patre Patris unice. This is found in three mss. of the 11th cent, in the Brit. Mus. (Jul. A. vi f. 32 b; Vesp. D. xii. f. 31; Harl. 2961, f. 227 b), and in the Latin Hys. of the Anglo-Saxon Church, 1851, p. 119, printed from an 11th cent. ms. at Durham. The text in Daniel, i., No. 75, "Christe redemptor gentium, De Patre," is from later authorities. In his vol. iv. p. 145, Daniel gives the earlier renderings from a Rheinau ms. of the 11th cent. The Hymn. Sarisb. 1851, p. 12, gives the text, with readings from various English Uses. [W. A. S.]

Translations in C. U. :—

1. Jesu, The Father's Only Son, John Mason Neale (Alternate Title: Christ, Redeemer Of All), given in the Hymnal N., 1st ed., 1852, No. 13, and continued in later editions. In 1884 it was transferred to the Hymner.

2. O Christ, Redeemer Of Our Race, by Sir H. W. Baker, appeared in the trial copy of the H. A. & M., 1859 ; 1st ed., 1861, and the revised ed., 1875.

3. O Christ, Redeemer of Mankind, by R. F. Littledale, made for and 1st appeared in the People's H, 1867, and signed " F. R."

Translations not in C. U. :—

1. O Christ, Redeemer Of Us All. Primer. 1604.

2. Christ, Whose Redemption All Doth Free. Primer. 1619.

3. Redeemer of the race of man. W. J. Blew. 1852.

4. O Christ, Redeemer of the World. J. D. Chambers. 1857. [J. J.]

Other Translations:

1. Christ, The Father's Only Son (Adaptation of Neale by Keyte and Parrott, The New Oxford Book of Carols, copyright 1992)

2. O Saviour Of Our Fallen Race, Gilbert E. Doan, Jr., Lutheran Book of Worship, copyright

3. Christe, Redemptor Omnium (Carols for Choirs 3, #12, copyright 1978)


ii. Roman Breviary Text.

Jesu Redemptor Onmium Quem lucis ante originem. This form of the hymn was given in the revised Roman Breviary, 1632, for Vespers and Matins on Christmas Day. The text is in Daniel, i., No. 75: and in Card. Newman's Hymni Ecclesiae, 1838 and 1865. [W. A. S.]

Translations in C. U.:—

1. Jesu, Redeemer Of The World! by E. Caswall, 1st pub. in his Lyra Catholica, 1849, p. 48, and again in his Hymns, &c, 1873, p. 26. From this text, with alterations, No. 21 in Chope's Hymnal, 1864; and No. 127 in the Hymnary, are taken. It is also the tr. used in several Roman Catholic H. Bks. for schools and missions.

2. Jesu, Redeemer From On High, by W. J. Copeland, in his Hys. for the Week, 1848, p. 58, and as "Jesu, whom nations all adore," in Rorison's Hys. & Anthems, 1851.

3. Lamb, Whose Blood For All Men Streamed, by R. Campbell, in his Hys. & Anthems, 1850; and in Annus Sanctus, 1884.

Translations not in C.U.:—

1. Jesu, The Ransomer of Man. Primer, 1685.

2. O Christ, The World's Redemption. Primer. 1706.

3. Jesu, the Ransomer of Man. Evening Office, 1710. A cento from Nos. 1 and 2, but partly original, reprinted in O. Shipley's Annus Sanctus, 1884.

4. Redeemer, Jesus, Life of Man. Bp. Mant. 1837.

5. Jesus, Redeemer, Ere the Light. Very Rev. Provost F. C. Husenbeth. 1840.

6. Jesu, Redeemer of us all. J. R. Beste. 1849.

7. Jesu, Our Soul's Redeeming Lord. Rev. Professor Thomas J. Potter, in the Catholic Psalmist, 1859; and Annus Sanctus, 1884.

8. Jesu, Redeemer of the earth. Bp. Williams. 1845.

9. O Jesu, ere all ages known. F. Trappes. 1865.

10. Jesus, Saviour of mankind. J. Wallace. 1874.

    From this text is also taken the hymn in the “Little Office of the Blessed V. Mary," in the Rom. Brev., Memento rerum Conditor. This has been tr. by E. Caswall, in his Lyra Catholica, 1849, and Hymns, &c, 1873, as “Remember, O Creator, Lord."

Editor's Note: Also see: Jesu! Redeemer Of The Earth (Translation by "J. W." in Ancient Hymns of Holy Church, 1845)

Other Translations

Lamb, Whose Blood For All Men Streamed. Robert Campbell, of Sherrington.

O Thou Whose All Redeeming Might. Fr. Richard Meux Benson (1824-1915), SSJE,  1906

O Jesu, Saviour of Mankind. New English Hymnal, #223, adapted from Fr. Benson (above), copyright 1986


iii. Paris Breviary Text.

Jesu, redemptor omnium Summi Parentis unice. This recast is by C. Coffin. It was given in his Hymni Sacri, Paris, 1736, and again in the same year in the revised Paris Brev. The text is in Chandler's Hys. of the P. Church, 1837, No. 43, and in Card. Newman's Hymni Ecclesiae, 1838 and 1865.

Translations in C. U. :-

1. Christ! Redeemer Of Our Race, by W. Mercer, in his Church Psalter, &c, 1864.

2. O Jesus, Life of ruined man, by R. C. Singleton. Written in 1867, and pub. in his Anglican H. Bk., 1868. In the 2nd ed., 1871, it was revised as O Jesu, Saviour Of Us All.

Translations not in C. U.:—

1. Jesus, Thou Holy Son of God. J. Chandler. 1837.

2. Jesu, Born The World To Free. I. Williams. 1839.


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