Ave Maria O Maiden O Mother

The origin of this hymn is unknown.

It was included in the 1900 Catholic School and Sodality Hymnal (ref) and is here referred to in a 1862 publication, St Patrick's Catholic Hymnal.   These dates mean that the words are almost certainly now in the public domain.

The Celebration Hymnal for Everyone (1994) and the The St. Gregory Hymnal and Catholic Choir Book (1920) credit it to "Sister M", but give to clues who she was or where she was from.

With meter with refrain, tunes the words have been set to include:
  • A tune from a Slovak hymnal - set by the editor of the 1920 St Gregory Hymnal
  • AVE MARIA by Richard Runciman Terry (1865-1938)



Choir, unaccompanied - Montani tune:

Choir with organ (poor sound quality:

Solo singer, unaccompanied:

Solo singer, organ backing, tune by R R Terry:


Ave Maria, O Maiden, O Mother,
Fondly thy children are calling on thee;
Thine are the graces unclaimed by another,
Sinless and beautiful star of the sea.

Mater amabilis, ora pro nobis,
Pray for thy children who call upon thee;
Ave Sanctissima, Ave Purissima,
Sinless and beautiful star of the sea.

Ave Maria, the night shades are falling,
Softly, our voices arise unto thee;
Earth’s lonely exiles for succour are calling,
Sinless and beautiful star of the sea.

Ave Maria, thy children are kneeling,
Words of endearment are murmured to thee;
Softly thy spirit upon us is stealing,
Sinless and beautiful star of the sea.

Ave Maria! Thou portal of heaven,
Harbour of refuge, to thee do we flee:
Lost in the darkness, by stormy winds driven,
Shine on our pathway, fair star of the sea.

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