The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

To blis God bryng us all and sum

For Christmas

Words and Music: English Traditional from
Ms. 354, f. 222b, Balliol College, Oxford, XVI Century

Source: 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), #LXXV, p. 239.

To blis God bryng us all and sum
Christe Redemptor omnium.

1. In Bedlem, in that fayer cyte,
A chyld was born of Owr Lady,
Lord and Prynce that he shuld be
    A solis ortus cardine.

2. Chyldren were slayn grett plente,
Jhesu, for the love of the;
Lett us never dampned be.
    Hostes Herodes ympie.

3. He was born of Owr Lady
Without wemb of her body,
Godes Son that syttyth on hye
    Jhesu salvator seculi.

4. As the son shynyth thorow the glas,
So Jhesu in her body was;
To serve hym he geve us grace
    O lux beata Trinitas.

5. Now ys born owr Lord Jhesus,
That mad mery all us;
Be all mery in thys howse;
    Exultet celum laudibus.

Editor's Note:

Also found in the Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, Richard Leighton Greene, ed., The Early English Carols (Oxford at the Clarendon Press, 1935), #21A, pp. 14-15,  and Richard Leighton Greene, ed., A Selection of English Carols (Oxford: The Clarendon Press, 1962), #8, p. 61.

Translations from Edith Rickert, In Bethlehem, That Fair City:

Editor's Note:

The popularity of this carol can be seen by its appearance in an unusually large number of 15th century manuscripts including

Trinity College Library, O. 3. 58. (James, No. 1230)

Balliol 354, Richard Hill's Common-place Book, Balliol College, Oxford

Eng. Poet. e. 1., Bodleian Library, Oxford

MS. Ee. 1. 12., f. 1.r., Cambridge University Library

Selden B. 26, Bodleian Library, Oxford

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