The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Oh, Who Would Be A Shepherd Boy

Words: Canon John Gray

Music: "Lord Thomas"
MIDI / Noteworthy Composer / PDF

Source: Richard R. Terry, Gilbert and Sandys' Christmas Carols (London: Burns, Oates & Washbourne, Ltd., 1931)

1. Oh, who would be a shepherd boy,
    And mind a flock of sheep,
While other men and boys enjoy
    A quiet night of sleep.

2. Yes, who would choose to pass the night
    In darkness and in cold?
Or hear the cry without a fright:
    The wolf is in the fold?

3. Now then there came a shining one,
    An angel of the Lord;
With news of God's eternal Son,
    By heavenly hosts adored.

4. 'The news,' said he, 'should make your glad,
    And fill your heart with joy;
You'll find Him in a manger laid,
    A mother's Baby Boy.'

5. Then many more were heard to raise
    A cheerful hymn of mirth:
'To God in heaven be endless praise;
    And peace to men on earth.'

6. The shepherds' heart were comforted
    By what was told to them.
And after what we've heard, they said,
    Let's go to Bethlehem.

Terry's Note:

"Sandys entitles the tune 'Lord Thomas' but gives no words to it. The present ones (in keeping with the simplicity of the tune) have been supplied by the Rev. Canon Gray."

Sheet Music from Richard Runciman Terry, Two Hundred Folk Carols (London: Burns Oates & Washbourne Limited, 1933), pp. 40.

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