“Good Christian Men, Rejoice”

Good Christian Men, Rejoice is a rollicking carol of joy. The lyrics and music echo each other as words and notes both rejoice that Christ is born. It was translated into English1 from Piæ Cantiones,2 a compilation of Latin songs done in 1582, by Finnish student, Theodoricus Petri. The music is based on a 14th century German melody.3 It’s another very old song with words for all Christians of all centuries.

Good Christian men, rejoice
with heart and soul and voice;
give ye heed to what we say:
News! News!
Jesus Christ is born today;
ox and ass before him bow,
and He is in the manger now.
Christ is born today!
Christ is born today!

Good Christian men, rejoice
with heart and soul and voice;
now ye hear of endless bliss:
Joy! Joy!
Jesus Christ was born for this!
He hath opened heaven’s door,
and man is blessed evermore.
Christ was born for this!
Christ was born for this!

Good Christian men, rejoice
with heart and soul and voice;
now ye need not fear the grave:
Peace! Peace!
Jesus Christ was born to save!
Calls you one and calls you all
to gain his everlasting hall.
Christ was born to save!
Christ was born to save!


__________
Image: The first page of “In Dulci Jubilo” (Good Christian Men, Rejoice) in the original version of the Piae Cantiones, Wikipedia, Public Domain.
1Carols for Christmas-tide,” The Hymns and Carols of Christmas.
2Piæ Cantiones,” The Hymns and Carols of Christmas. See my post, “Love And Joy Come To You” for the story of how this carol became part of the heritage of English Christmas carols.
3Good Christian Men, Rejoice,” The Hymns and Carols of Christmas.
Vocalists: The Wissman Family.

Copyright ©2020 Iwana Carpenter

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