Sunday, 20 November 2016

Heu! quid jaces stabulo - John Mauburne

Ah! how humble is thy birth
    In the lowly manger,
Thou the Lord of heaven and earth,
    Weeping as a stranger;
If a King indeed art thou,
Where is all thy glory now?
    Where thy halls of splendour?
Here is nought but poverty,
Barren need and penury,
    Little child so tender.

"Hither hath a love sublime
    Drawn me down so lowly,
Love of man whose greed and crime
    Make the earth unholy.
I must suffer this disgrace
To uplift the human race,
    Out of woes distressing;
I must suffer want and pain,
To enrich your race, and gain
    Everlasting blessing."

Thee I praise, my King divine
    With a thousand praises;
Loving thoughts this love of thine
    In my bosom raises.
Glory, glory evermore
Be to thee from shore to shore,
    Lord of earth and heaven;
Honor unto thee and love
Through the earth and heaven above
    Be forever given.

John Mauburne (1460 - 1502) Belgium
Translated by Daniel Joseph Donahoe
Source: Early Christian Hymns: Series II. Translations of the Verses of the Most Noted Latin Writers of the Early and Middle Ages, edited by Daniel Joseph Donahoe, Donahoe Publishing Company, 1911

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