The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Open Thy Door, Gentle Hosteler

Words: George R. Woodward

Source: Rev. George R. Woodward, The Babe Of Bethlehem, Being Some Christmas Carols (48 West Hill, Highgate Village, 1923), #03

1. Open thy door, gentle hosteler,
Undo the bolt, and the pin;
For the snow—flake and the fleet
Are a-falling in the street,
And harbour we crave in thine inn.

2. Late is the hour, mirk and chill the night:
Wherefore, with other our kin,
Hither summon’d, e’en as we,
By Augustus his decree,
Prithee lodge us inside thine inn.

3. Out of a city in Galilee
Came we by mountain and linn:
‘Tis the fourth sun-set to-day
Sith we set out on our way,
And we seek rest inside this inn.

4. Old man am I, and with flaxen poll:
But young is my Ladykin.
Soon will she (that meek and mild)
Be deliver’d of a child:
Wherefore let us inside the inn.

5. Hungry and thirsty, way-worn we be,
And fain would pay, for to win
Bed and board, an so we might,
On this bleak December night,
View the fire in the Bethlehem inn.

6. Joseph and Mary, God rest you well!
But why un-bar bolt and pin?
For my house is full; and tho’
I be loth to say you No,
Ne’er a room for you hath mine inn.

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