The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

The Virgin's Cradle-Hymn

Words: S. T. Coleridge, Sibylline Leaves, 1817

Source: Edith Rickert, Ancient English Christmas Carols: 1400-1700 (London: Chatto & Windus, 1914), p. 288.

Sleep, sweet babe! my cares beguiling:
Mother sits beside thee smiling;
    Sleep, my darling, tenderly!
If thou sleep not, mother mourneth,
Singing as her wheel she turneth:
    Come, soft slumber, balmily!


Dormi, Jesu! Mater ridet
Quae tam dulcem somnum videt,
    Dormi, Jesu! blandule!
Si non dormis, Mater plorat,
Inter fila cantans orat,
    Blande, veni, somnule.

Also found in A. H. Bullen, A Christmas Garland (London: John C. Nimmo, 1885), p. 142. Bullen notes "Copied from a print of the Virgin in a Roman Catholic village in Germany."

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