The text is of uncertain origin, apparently first being used by Mouton. Mouton's setting enjoyed enormous popularity, mss. being found in the Vatican and in Guatamalan churches alike, and it served as a model both for the other motets and for two parody masses.
(as appearing in the Mouton motet) Prima pars Quaeramus cum pastoribus Verbum incarnatum; cantemus cum hominibus regem saeculorum. Noe. Quod tu vides in stabulo? Jesum natum de Virgine. Quid audis in praesepio? Angelos cum carmine et pastores dicentes: Noe. Secunda pars Ubi pascas, ubi cubes? Dic, si ploras, aut si redes: Te rogamus, Rex Christe. Noe. Cibus est lac virgineum, lectus durum praesepium, carmina sunt lacrimae. Noe.
First Part Let us seek with the shepherds the Word incarnate; let us sing with all mankind for the King of the ages. Noel. What do you see in the stable? Jesus, born of the Virgin. What do you hear in the manger? Angels with a song and shepherds saying: Noel.
Second part Where do you eat, where do you lie? Say, whether you weep or laugh: we ask you, Christ the King. Noel. My food is milk of the Virgin, my bed a hard manger, my songs are tears. Noel.