Scripture Verse

Suddenly there was…a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. Luke 2:13–14


William F. Sherwin

Words: Char­lotte El­li­ott, Thoughts in Verse, on Sac­red Sub­jects (Lond­on: Will­iam Hunt, 1871), pag­es 33–34.

Music: Cut­ting Will­iam F. Sher­win (1826–1888) (🔊 pdf nwc).

If you know when the mu­sic was writ­ten,

Charlotte Elliott



Calm was the hal­lowed night!
Valley and moun­tain height
Slumbered in shade.
Roofed by Heav’n’s az­ure fair,
Making their flocks their care,
Shepherds, in op­en air,
Tranquilly stayed.

Suddenly round them shone,
Dazzling to look up­on,
Splendors of light;
Then drew an an­gel near,
And, to al­lay their fear,
Poured on their rav­ished ear
Words of de­light!

Ne’er since the world be­gan,
Music so sweet to man
Sounded abroad;
On that aus­pi­cious morn,
Changing our state for­lorn,
Christ as a babe was born,
Jesus the Lord!

Well might the tid­ings told
Waken your harps of gold,
Chorus un­seen!
Sweet rang your min­strel­sy,
Glory to God on high!
Peace on earth,
Good will to­wards men!

Well might the shep­herds haste,
Ere yet the night was past,
That thing to see;
Where light the me­te­or shed,
Well might the M­agi tread,
Joyful, the path that led,
Savior, to Thee.

Infant of Beth­le­hem!
Now do I seek, like them,
Thy mean abode;
There in Thy strange dis­guise
Thee do I re­cog­nize,
Maker of earth and skies,
Almighty God!

Mysteries so deep de­ter
Nature’s proud rea­son­er,
Scorning God’s word:
Thee, whom the Fa­ther seals,
He to Thy seed re­veals;
Each to this man­date kneels,
Thus saith the Lord.

Wonderful, Coun­se­lor!
Thee whom the vir­gin bore,
Thee I re­ceive;
God e’er the world be­gan,
Perfect God, per­fect man,
Mystery too deep to scan,
This I be­lieve.

Lo, at Thy feet I lay,
Giving my­self away,
All that is mine;
Treasures I none un­fold,
Frankincense, myrrh, or gold,
One sin­ful heart be­hold,
Take it for Thine.

Father! Thy love I bless,
Who in our deep dis­tress
Gavest Thy Son!
Savior! I Thee adore,
Spirit! Thine unc­tion pour;
Thee I praise ev­er­more,
Great Three in One!