The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

There Is A Blossom Sprung Of A Thorn

Alternate Title: Alleluia! Alleluia!

For Christmas and Epiphany

Words and Music: English Traditional, Before 1536
Balliol College, Oxford. MS. 354. XVI Century.

Source: Edith Rickert, Ancient English Christmas Carols: 1400-1700 (London: Chatto & Windus, 1914), pp. 117-8.

Alleluya, alleluia,
Deo Patri sit gloria.

1. There is a Blossom sprung of a thorn,
To save mankind that was forlorn,
As the prophets said beforn,
    Deo Patri sit gloria!

2. There sprang a well at Mary's foot,
That turned all this world to boot;1
Of her took Jesus flesh and blood,
    Deo Patri sit gloria!

3. From that well there stretched a stream,
Out of Egypt into Bethlehem;
God through His highness turned it again,
    Deo Patri sit gloria!

4. There were three kings of diverse lands,
They thought a thought that was strong,
Him to seek and thank among.
    Deo Patri sit gloria!

5. They came richly with their presents,
With gold, myrrh and frankincense,
As clerkes read in their sequence,
    Deo Patri sit gloria!

6. The eldest king of them three,
He went foremost for he would see
What doomsman2 that this should be,
    Deo Patri sit gloria!

7. The middlemost king up he rose,
He saw a Babe in armes close;
In middle age he thought He was.3
    Deo Patri sit gloria!

8. The youngest king up he stood,
Hew made his offering rich and good,
To Jesus Christmas that shed His blood.
    Deo Patri sit gloria!

9. There shone a star out of heaven bright,
That men of earth should deem aright
That this was Jesu full of might.
    Deo Patri sit gloria!

Notes from Rickert:

1. Help. Return

2. Judge. Return

3. He had expected to find Him. Return

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