The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

This Night To Us A Child Is Born

For Christmas

Words: English Traditional from the Hill Ms.
Compare: All This Time This Song Is Best (Rickert)
A variant of A litel childe there is ibore
A Little Child There Is Yborn
Gloria Tibi Domine

See also In hoc anni circulo
and Verbum caro factum est de virgin

Music: Not Stated

Source: Jessie L. Weston, ed., Old English Carols from the Hill MS. [Balliol College MS. 354] Translated by Jessie L. Weston. (London: David Nutt, 1911), Carol #VII, p. 11.

At this time this song is best,
Verbum Caro factus est !

1. This night to us a Child is born,
Who sprang, a branch, from Jesse's thorn ;
'Tis meet we sing both night and morn,
Verbum Caro factus est !

2. Jesus, His Name, as all must hear,
And Mary was His Mother dear,
Our sorrow shall He turn to cheer,
Verbum Caro factus est !

3. His Birth, it fell at high midnight,
The stars they shone so fair and bright,
The Angels sang with all their might,
Verbum Caro factus est !

4. Now kneel we down upon our knee,
And pray we to the Trinitie,
Our help, our succour, now to be,
Verbum Caro factus est !

Editor's Note:

Weston's apparent source was Ewald Flügel, ed., “Liedersammlungen des XVI Jahrhunderts, Besonders Aus Der Zeit Heinrichs VIII. III. 6. Die lieder des Balliol Ms. 354,” in Eugen Einenkel, ed., Anglia - Zeitschrift für englische Philologie enthaltend Beitrage zur Geschlicht der englischen Sprache und Literatur. Band XXVI. (Halle: Max Niemeyer, 1903), pp. 94-285. This work is available at both Internet Archive and Google Books.

See also Roman Dyboski, ed. Songs, Carols and Other Miscellaneous Poems from the Balliol MS. 354, Richard Hill’s Commonplace Book. Early English Text Society Extra Series No. CI (London: Published for the Early English Text Society by Kegan Paul, Trench, Trübner & Co., Ltd., 1907, issued in 1908). Over 103 songs of great variety, including 62 "sacred songs and carols." Available at Internet Archive and Google Books.

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