Scripture Verse

There were…shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them. Luke 2:8–9


Words: Mrs. Anne Gas­kell, cir­ca 1879. The Mu­sic­al Times, Vol­umes 20–21, page 610, 1879, ad­ver­tised the Third Edi­tion…Twelve Christ­mas Hymns and ca­rols, by Mrs. Gas­kell, set to mu­sic by ED­WIN LE­MARE, Or­gan­ist of Ho­ly Tri­ni­ty Church, Vent­nor [Isle of Wight].

Music: Pa­dua Ed­win Le­mare (🔊 pdf nwc). Note: Le­mare’s son, al­so named Ed­win, was a not­ed or­gan­ist, but was on­ly 14 years old in 1879.

If you know where to get a good pho­to of Gas­kell or Le­mare (head & shoul­ders, at least 200×300 pix­els),


Shepherds watch­ing o’er the plain,
Tell us what ye heard,
Whisper of the glad re­frain
That your bo­soms stirred.

Shepherds, ye who saw the light
Through the riv­en clouds,
Tell us of that won­drous night
Ye in fear were bowed.

Tell us, shep­herds, what ye saw
When the guid­ing star
Led ye to a bed of straw
In a cave afar!

Tell us of a mo­ther meek,
Of a babe di­vine;
Tell us, show us, where to seek
That most ho­ly shrine.