The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Saint Stephen Was An Holy Man

For Saint Stephen's Day
See Hymns to St Stephen

Version 2
Compare: Saint Stephen Was A Holy Man - Version 1

Source: William Sandys, Christmas Carols Ancient and Modern (London: Richard Beckley, 1833)

1. Saint Stephen was an holy man,
    Endued with heavenly might,
And many wonders did he work
    Before the people's sight.
And by the blessed Spirit of God,
    Which did his heart inflame,
He spared not in every place
    To preach Christ Jesus' name.

O man, do never faint nor fear
    When God the truth shall try,
But mark how Stephen for Christ's sake
    Was willing for to die.

2. Which doctrine seem'd most wond'rous strange
    Among the faithless Jews,
And for the same despitefully
    Good Stephen they accused.
Before the elders was he brought,
    His answer for to make,
But they could not his spirit withstand
    Whereby this man did speak. Chorus

3. And then false witness did appear,
    And look'd him in the face,
And said he spake blasphemous words
    Against that holy place;
And how he said that Jesus Christ
    The Temple would destroy,
And change the laws which they so long
    From Moses did enjoy. Chorus

4. Whilst this was told, the multitude
    Beholding him aright,
His comely face began to shine
    Most like an Angel bright.
The High Priest then to them did say,
    And bid them tell at large,
If this was true which at that time
    They laid unto his charge. Chorus

5. Then Stephen did put forth his voice,
    And he did first unfold
The wond'rous works that God hath wrought
    Even from their fathers old;
That they thereby might plain perceive
    Christ Jesus should be he
That from the burthen of the law
    Should save us frank and free. Chorus

6. But, oh! quoth he, you wicked men,
    Which of the prophets all
Did not your fathers persecute,
    And keep in woeful thrall,
Who told the coming of the just
    In prophecies most plain,
Who here amongst you was betray'd
    And most unjustly slain? Chorus

7. But when they heard him so to say,
    Their hearts in sunder clave,
And gnashing on them with their teeth,
    Like mad men they did rave.
And with a should most loud and shrill
    Upon him all they ran,
And then without the city gates
    They ston'd this holy man. Chorus

8. Then he most meekly on his knees
    To God did pray at large
Desiring that He would not lay
    This sin unto their charge;
Then yielding up his soul to God,
    Who had it dearly bought,
He lost his life, whose body then
    To grave was seemly brought. Chorus

Sheet Music from Sandys, 1833

Sheet music from William Sandys, Christmas-tide, Its History, Festivities and Carols, With Their Music (London: John Russell Smith, 1852), pp. 275-8.

Sheet Music from Richard R. Terry, Gilbert and Sandys' Christmas Carols (London: Burns, Oates & Washbourne, Ltd., 1931)
SATB: MIDI / Noteworthy Composer / PDF

Sheet Music from Richard Runciman Terry, Two Hundred Folk Carols (London: Burns Oates & Washbourne Limited, 1933), pp. 38-39.

021a-St_Stephen_Was.jpg (193628 bytes) 021b-St_Stephen_Was.jpg (142897 bytes)

See and play the Noteworthy Composer score if you have installed the NoteWorthy Composer Browser Plug-in

Saint Stephen Was A Holy Man - Terry

Only tested by Noteworthy for Netscape, Opera, and IE Browsers (Versions 4 or 5)
In my experience, it also works with Firefox.

Print Page Return Home Page Close Window

If you would like to help support Hymns and Carols of Christmas, please click on the button below and make a donation.

Related Hymns and Carols