The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Glorious God Had Great Pity

Words: English Traditional, Before 1536

Source: Edith Rickert, Ancient English Christmas Carols: 1400-1700 (London: Chatto & Windus, 1914), pp. 190-1.

Sing we with mirth, joy and solace
In honour of this Christėmas!

1. Glorious God had great pity,
How long man's soul in pain should be;
He sent His Son to make us free,
    Which for man's sake,
Of a maiden pure,
Against nature,
    Our flesh did take.
        Sing we with mirth, joy and solace
        In honour of this Christėmas!

2. In Bethlehem our Saviour,
Without food, in a manger
Was born - it was his pleasure -
    Beastės among.
Angels heavenly
Made harmony
    And joyful song.
        Sing we with mirth, joy and solace
        In honour of this Christėmas!

3. The eighty day he was circumcised,
Lest Moses' law should be despised;
A name to him they have devised,
    Call him Jesus;
For Gabriel
His mother did tell
    That it should be thus.
        Sing we with mirth, joy and solace
        In honour of this Christėmas!

4. A new-made star, more large and clear
Than other stars, then did appear.
Fro Chaldea the philosophers in fere
    Into Bethlehem it brought.
There it did stand
Still, till that they found
    Him that they sought.
        Sing we with mirth, joy and solace
        In honour of this Christėmas!

5. The kingės brought their offering,
Gold that betokeneth a worthy king,
Incense, priesthood; myrrh burying
    For his manhood.
The angel came
Bade them go home
    Not by Herod.
        Sing we with mirth, joy and solace
        In honour of this Christėmas!

6. Trust in God, man, and in none other;
Mistrust Him not, He is thy brother;
Thou hast a mediatrix of His mother.
    Sigh for thy sin,
Cry mercy,
He will not deny
    Thy soul to win.
        Sing we with mirth, joy and solace
        In honour of this Christėmas!

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