The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Behold what lyfe that we ryne ine

Words and Music: Traditional English
Bodleian Library. MS. Eng. Poet. e. 1 XV Cent.

Source: Thomas Wright, Songs and Carols Now First Printed, From a Manuscript of the Fifteenth Century (London: The Percy Society, 1847), Song #51, 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.

Of The Puryfycacion

    Revertere, revertere, the quene of blysse and of beaute.

Behold what lyfe that we ryne ine,
Frayl to fale and ever lyke to syne,
Thorow owr enmys entysyng;
    Therefor we syng and cry to the,
    Revertere, etc.

Come hyder, lady, fayryst floure,
And kepe us, lady, frome doloure;
Defend us, lady, and be owr socoure;
    For we cease not to cal to the,
    Revertere, etc.

Torne owr lyfe, lady, to Goddys luste;
Syne to fle, and fleschly luste;
For aftur hym in the we trust
    To kepe us frome adversyte:
    Revertere, etc.

Thys holy day of Puryfycacyon
To the temple thou bare owr salvacyon,
Jhesu Cryst thin own swet sone;
    To whom thefor now syng we,
    Revertere, etc.

Farwell, Crystmas fayer and free;
Farwell newers day with the;
Farwell the holy Epyphane;
    And to Mary now syng we,
    Revertere, etc.

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