Virgin Born we Bow Before Thee

This hymn of adoration for Jesus, but which strongly acknowledges Mary, was written by English Anglican clergyman and later bishop of Calcutta, Reginald Heber (1783-1826), for the feast of the Presentation.

A slightly altered version, Infant Christ we Bow Before You, has also been published recently.

With meter 8.8.7.7 D, tunes it is set to include:
  • MON DIEU, PRETE--MOI L'ORIELLE, aka GENEVA 86 by Louis Bourgeois (1510-59), but sometimes credited to Claude Goudimel (1514-1572, alt.)
  • QUEM PASTORES, from the 14th century, composer unknown



Downloads


Examples


Acapella, tune MON DIEU, PRETE--MOI L'ORIELLE:



Instrumental - organ, gently played. Tune tune MON DIEU, PRETE--MOI L'ORIELLE



Instrumental - organ, with words on-screen:


Lyrics

Traditional language

Virgin-born, we bow before thee:
blessed was the womb that bore thee;
Mary, Mother meek and mild,
blessed was she in her Child.
Blessed was the breast that fed thee;
blessed was the hand that led thee;
blessed was the parent's eye
that watched thy slumbering infancy.

Blessed she by all creation,
who brought forth the world's salvation,
and blessed they, for ever blest,
who love thee most and serve thee best.
Virgin-born, we bow before thee;
blessed was the womb that bore thee;
Mary, Mother meek and mild,
blessed was she in her Child.

Modern English

Virgin-born, we bow before you:
blessed was the womb that bore you;
Mary, Mother meek and mild,
blessed was she in her Child.
Blessed was the breast that fed you;
blessed was the hand that led you;
blessed was the parent's eye
that watched your slumbering infancy.

Blessed she by all creation,
who brought forth the world's salvation,
and blessed they, for ever blest,
who love you most and serve you best.
Virgin-born, we bow before you;
blessed was the womb that bore you;
Mary, Mother meek and mild,
blessed was she in her Child.

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