The first day of the week, very early in the morning, they came unto the sepulcher, bringing the spices which they had prepared. Luke 24:1
Words: Translated to English from Greek (Τὸν πρὸ ἡλίου ἥλιν δύναντα ποτὲ ἐν τάφῳ) by William C. Dix in Lyra Messianica, edited by Orby Shipley (London: Longman, Green, Longman, Roberts & Green, 1864), pages 292–93.
If you know where to get a good photo of Smith (head-and-shoulders, at least 200×300 pixels), or a better one of Dix, would you ?
This is an Οῑκος, or short hymn, in honour of the holy women who brought spices to anoint the body of Jesus, and follows in the Greek Office for Easter Day, a κοντάκιον (another short hymn), by St. Romanus (q. v.), to whom, possibly because of this close association, it is sometimes ascribed.
It dates probably about 500, and is found inserted between Odes vi. and vii. of the Golden Canon of St. John of Damascene in the Pentecostarion.
Julian, p. 1182
As those who seek the break of day
Full early in the morning,
The women came where Jesus lay,
Who late had borne the scorning.
Sweet ointment in their hands they brought,
And ere the sun had risen,
The Sun of Righteousness they sought,
Now set within death’s prison.
And thus they cried—the body here,
Let us give new anointing;
The quickening flesh, the body dear,
Which by divine appointing
From this dark sepulcher shall rise,
And Adam’s race deliver,
And lift the fallen to the skies
To reign in bliss for ever.
And like the Magi, hasten we
To Him with love adoring;
Sweet spices, too, our gifts shall be,
And we must weep, imploring
That He, in swaddling clothes no more,
But in fine linen lying,
Would grant the fallen when life is o’er,
The gift of life undying.