Scripture Verse

This shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the Babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. Luke 2:12


William C. Dix (1837–1898)

Words: Will­iam C. Dix, in The Mu­sic­al Times, vol­ume 31, num­ber 574 (Lon­don: De­cem­ber 1, 1890), page 31. Re­peats the pen­ul­ti­mate line of each verse three times.

Music: Jo­seph Barn­by (🔊 pdf nwc).

If you know where to get a bet­ter pho­to of Dix,

Joseph Barnby (1838–1896)


O Babe! in man­ger ly­ing,
O Child most fair to see,
The first fruits of the Gen­tiles
By star were led to Thee;
We now with joy­ful wor­ship
Do haste to Beth­l’hem town,
To greet Thee with Thy mo­ther, (3)
And hum­bly there fall down.

Full sweet the mer­ry chant­ing,
The an­gel choirs do make,
With such for march­ing music,
Who would not tra­vel take?
Though wind be sharp and pierc­ing,
And snow lie deep to­night,
Much cheer and good awaits us, (3)
And love shall warm us quite.

A good­ly band we gather,
And some are sick and sad,
While oth­ers are right mer­ry,
And sing, they be so glad;
But this dear Child, all sor­row
Will kind­ly take away,
And crown the joy­ful-heart­ed, (3)
With bliss that lasts for aye.

The star o’er­head burns bright­ly,
And we go on apace;
And pre­sent­ly, are spy­ing,
A mean and shame­ful place;
There come, we make low knock­ing,
The shep­herds ope the door,
And straigh­tway Christ our Sav­ior, (3)
We wor­ship and im­plore.

Sweet Babe! most con­des­cend­ing,
O by Thy spot­less birth,
Let light arise in dar­kness,
And peace come to the earth;
Rest for the hea­vy-lad­en,
And joy for those who weep,
In Beth­le­hem of Jew­ry, (3)
Our God doth al­ways keep.