The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Tidinges, Tidinges That Be True

For Advent, Christmas

The Salutation Carol of the Angel Gabriel
Based on Luke 1:26-38,
The Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Words: English Traditional, Before 1536, from the Lansdowne MS 379, British Library, London

Music: Not Stated

Source: E. K. Chambers and F. Sidgwick, eds., Early English Lyrics  (London: A. H. Bullen, 1907), #LXXI, p. 133.

Tidinges, tidinges that be true,
Sorowe is paste and joye dothe renue.

Qwhereas Adam caused be sinne
    Oure nature thus to be mortall,
A maiden sone dothe nowe begin 5
    For to repaire us from that fall.
            And that is true ;
    The name of him is Criste Jesu.

Sume of oure kinde hathe hadd suche grase
    That sin his birthe they did him se 10
Bothe sonne and mother fase to fase
    In the chefe cite calde Jure.
            And that is true ;
    Bothe kinges and schepardes they it knue.

The prophettes thereof ware nothing dismaide, 15
    Of that tidinges before that they hadde tolde ;
For nowe it is full righte as they saide,    
    A clene maide hathe borne a king in folde.
            And that is true ;
    For he is borne to ware the purpull hue. 20

Notes to LXXI, p. 354.

Lansdowne 379; not printed hitherto. The MS. spells 'trwe,' 'renwe,' etc.

18. in folde; not in MS., supplied by us.

Expanded Citation

Lansdowne 379. Paper, 8 x 5 1/2. Two carols on f. 38. XV cent.

Editor's Note:

See the excellent discussion by A Clerk of Oxford concerning this carol, Tidings, Tidings That Be True http://aclerkofoxford.blogspot.com/2015/01/tidings-tidings-that-be-true-sorrow-is.html. The discussion identifies the second carol in Lansdowne 379,  A marvellous thing I have mused in my mind; see Richard Greene, The Early English Carols (Oxford, 1977), p.50. All links open in a new window at an exterior site.

Versions of this carol on this site:

Richard L. Greene gives us 24 Carols of the Annunciation in his The Early English Carols (Oxford, 1935), #234-#257, pp. 166-184.

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