1. From out Cologne there came three kings
To worship Jesus Christ, their King.
To Him they sought, fine herbs they brought,
And many a beauteous golden thing;
They brought their gifts to Bethlehem town,
And in that manger set them down.
2. Then spake the first king, and he said:
O Child, most heavenly, bright, and fair!
I bring this crown to Bethlehem town
For Thee, and only Thee, to wear;
So give a heavenly crown to me
When I shall come at last to Thee!
3. The second, then. I bring Thee here
This royal robe, O Child! he cried;
Of silk ’tis spun, and such an one
There is not in the world beside;
So in the day of doom requite
Me with a heavenly robe of white!
4. The third king gave his gift, and quoth:
Spikenard and myrrh to Thee I bring,
And with these twain would I most fain
Anoint the body of my King;
So may their incense sometime rise
To plead for me in yonder skies!
5. Thus spake the three kings of Cologne,
That gave their gifts, and went their way;
And now kneel I in prayer hard by
The cradle of the Child today;
Nor crown, nor robe, nor spice I bring
As offering unto Christ, my King.
6. Yet have I brought a gift the Child
May not despise, however small;
For here I lay my heart today,
And it is full of love to all.
Take Thou the poor but loyal thing,
My only tribute, Christ, my King!
Field, Eugene, an American journalist who has written somewhat extensively for children, was born at St. Louis, Missouri, Sep. 2, 1850, educated at the University of Missouri, and died Nov. 4, 1895. His published works include Little Book of Western Verse, 1889; Second Book of Verse, 1891; and Love Songs of Childhood, 1894. A limited number of his hymns are in common use in America, and specimens of his verse are given in Horder's Treasury of American Sacred Song, 1900, pp. 283-287. See also "There burns a star o'er Bethlehem town."
--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology, New Supplement (1907)
Go to person page >