The first Christmas (Joseph Barnby)

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Part I: The Annunciation

Editor: James Gibb (submitted 2019-01-06).   Score information: A4, 3 pages, 72 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes:

Part II: The message of the Shepherds

Editor: James Gibb (submitted 2019-01-08).   Score information: A4, 4 pages, 100 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes: Transcribed from the edition on IMSLP.

Part III: Cradle song of the Blessed Virgin

Editor: James Gibb (submitted 2019-01-10).   Score information: A4, 4 pages, 91 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes:

Part IV: Gloria in excelsis

Editor: James Gibb (submitted 2019-01-11).   Score information: A4, 3 pages, 80 kB   Copyright: CPDL
Edition notes:

General Information

Title: The first Christmas
Composer: Joseph Barnby
Lyricist: Angela Goetze

Number of voices: 4vv   Voicing: SATB
Genre: SacredAnthem

Language: English
Instruments: Organ

Published: 1897

Description:

External websites:

Original text and translations

English.png English text


The Annunciation

Mary sat at even
In her garden's shade,
And the evening sunlight
Round about her played.

Suddenly from heaven
Came an angel fair,
To her threshold flying,
Halting gently there.

Mary, pale and trembling,
To the angel said:
"What can be thy message
To me, Mary, maid?"

And the angel answered:
"Hearken unto me.
Thou that art a maiden,
Shalt a mother be!

Blessed among women,
Thou shalt bear a Son,
And the Lord shall give Him
Father David's throne."

Mary knelt at even
Praying to the Lord,
Be it to me, Father,
According to Thy Word.


The message of the shepherds

Beside their flocks the shepherds watched
That holy Christmas night,
When lo! the angel of the Lord
Shone on their dazzled sight.

"Fear not," he cried, "of joy and peace
Glad tidings do I bring,
In Bethlehem a new-born babe,
Lies Christ, your heavenly King.

And this shall be a guiding sign
To you and nations all,
The Holy Babe you there shall find,
Laid in a humble stall.

And suddenly the hosts of heaven
Shone on their wondering eyes,
And raised a song of holy praise
That echoed through the skies.

Then marvelled all the shepherds sore,
What was this wondrous thing?
To Bethlehem they took their way,
And there they found their King.


Cradle song of the Blessed Virgin

Sleep, my babe, and o'er Thee
Angels vigil keep,
Silent, they adore Thee,
Sleep, my baby, sleep;

Jesu, sleep, Thy mother
Holds Thee in her arm,
May the love she bears Thee
Shield Thee safe from harm.

Sleep, my babe, still dreaming
Of Thy home above,
Whence Thou cam'st to save us,
By Thy Father's love.

Earthly pomp may tempt Thee,
Earthly sin assail,
But the tempter's legions
Shall in terror quail.

Thou shalt suffer torment,
Thou Thy life shall give,
Thou shalt die for sinners,
That the sinners live.

Jesu. Thou shalt triumph,
Glorious Thou shalt rise,
Thou shalt come to judge us,
Throned in the skies.

Sleep, my babe, and o'er Thee
Angels vigil keep,
Silent, they adore Thee,
Sleep, my baby, sleep.


Gloria in excelsis

Glory to God in the Highest,
Glory to God let us sing,
Glory to God in His Heaven,
Glory to Jesus, our King.

Glory to God in the Highest,
Peace on this earth here below;
Jesus has come to redeem us,
To free us from sin and from woe.

As love is the law in the heavens,
So love shall be law upon earth,
By love shall each man be a free-man,
Born anew by the heavenly Birth.

Glory to God in the Highest,
Glory to God let us sing,
Glory to God in His Heaven,
Glory to Jesus, our King.