The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

O Maker of the Stars of Night

Evening Hymn (Vespers) in Advent

Words: Anonymous 7th Century Latin Hymn, “Ambrosian.”
See Conditor alme siderum, with notes, the main page for this family of hymns.

Translation by Robert Seymore Bridges

Tune: Proper Sarum, Mode IV, Set by M.M.B.

Source: Source: Robert Seymour Bridges and H. Ellis Wooldridge, eds., Hymns-The Yattendon Hymnal (Oxford: B. H Blackwell, 1905), #47.

1. O Maker of the stars of night
That image faith's immortal light
O Christ, Redeeming Lord of all
Thy supplicants hear, who on Thee call.

2. Thou pitying man who lay beneath
The terror of eternal death,
Didst come the wearied world to save,
And free the guilty from the grave.

3. 'Twas when earth's day drew near its close
Thy morning sun in Zion rose,
And virgin-born went forth in fire
To lead anew our lost desire.

4. At whose great strength and majesty
Doth all creation bow the knee,
All things on earth and all in heav'n
Henceforth to thy dominion giv'n.

5. We pray thee, Holiest, who shalt come
To be our judge on day of doom,
Preserve us in our trial brief
From all that then might bring us grief. Amen.

Sheet Music from Bridges and Wooldridge, eds., Hymns-The Yattendon Hymnal (1905), #47.

O_Maker_Stars-Yattendon-47-1905-01.jpg (217292 bytes)  O_Maker_Stars-Yattendon-47-1905-02.jpg (198203 bytes)

Also found in Sir H. Walford Davies, et al, eds., Hymns of Western Europe (London : Oxford University Press, H. Milford, 1927), #166, p. 208, Stating that the source was "Von Himmel hoch" by Luther.

O_Maker_Stars-Davies-H_W_Europe-166-1927.jpg (310433 bytes)

This text, in blackletter, is also found in In Robert Seymour Bridges, ed., Hymns From The Yattendon Hymnal (Oxford: Henry Daniel, 1899), #13, pp. 16-17.

O_Maker-Bridges-Hymns-1899-13-pp16-17-c2.jpg (50908 bytes)

Bridges was also the author of A Practical Discourse on Some Principles of Hymn-Singing (1901).

See also "Treasure No 18: Robert Bridges, Hymn Writer" by R. A. Moody: An article from Bulletin #67, Spring 1954, Hymn Society of Great Britain & Ireland.

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