What Star is This With Beams so Bright

This is a hymn for Epiphany.  It is based on the Latin Quem Stella Sole Pulchrior, which was written by Charles Coffin in 1736.

It was translated by English Anglican priest and scholar John Chandler (1806-1876).

With meter, it is almost always set to the tune PUER NOBIS NASCITUR by German composer and organist Michael Praetorius (1571–1621).


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What Star Is This (Puer Nobis) arranged for organ, David Lasky


Solo singer, unaccompanied:

Small choir with piano:

Instrumental - electronic organ with bells:


What star is this, with beams so bright,
more lovely than the noonday light?
’Tis sent to announce a newborn king,
glad tidings of our God to bring.

’Tis now fulfilled what God decreed,
“From Jacob shall a star proceed;"
and lo! the eastern sages stand
to read in heaven the Lord’s command.

While outward signs the star displays,
an inward light the Lord conveys
and urges them, with tender might,
to seek the giver of the light.

O Jesus, while the star of grace
impels us on to seek your face,
let not our slothful hearts refuse
the guidance of your light to use.

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