Dear Friend of Hymnary,

As you know, we don't ask for money too often. But we're asking now.

So before you hit the "close" button on this box, please consider a donation to keep Hymnary going.

More than half a million people come here every month -- worship leaders, hymnologists, hymn lovers and more -- people who now have access to the most complete database of North American hymnody on the planet thanks to this site. But keeping all of this afloat does not come without a cost, and we have limited sources of revenue. So if you benefit from, would you please consider a donation today? Even small amounts help, and they also let us know you're behind us and support what we do.

You can make your tax-deductible contribution by clicking the Donate button below, or you can send a check to Hymnary at 3201 Burton SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49546.

On behalf of the entire Hymnary team,
Harry Plantinga

The Virgin and Child

On yester night I saw a sight

Tune: [On yester night I saw a sight]
Published in 2 hymnals

Audio files: MIDI

Full Text

1 On yester night I saw a sight,
A star as bright as day;
And all along, I heard a song,
Lullay, by by, lullay, lullay, lullay.

2 A lovely lady sat and sang,
And to her child she spake:
My Son, my Brother, Father dear,
It makes my heart to ache,
To sweet Thee there, so cold and bare,
A King upon this hay;
But hush Thy wail, I will not fail
To sing by by, lullay, lullay,
to sing by by, lullay, lullay;
To sing by by lullay, lullay,
Lullay, lullay, lullay, lullay, lullay.

3 The Child then spake whilst she did sing,
And to the maiden said:
"Right sure I am a mighty King,
Though in a crib My bed:
For angels bright,
Down to Me light;
Thou canst not say Me nay:
Then why so sad ?
Thou mayest be glad
To sing by by, lullay."

4 "Now, sweetest Lord, since Thou art King.
Why liest Thou in a stall ?
Why didst Thou not Thy cradle bring
To some great royal hall ?
Methinks 'tis right,
That king or knight
Should lie in good array;
And them among,
It were no wrong
To sing by by, lullay."

5 "My Mother Mary, thine I be,
Though I be laid in stall,
Both lords and dukes shall worship Me,
And so shall monarchs all:
Ye shall well see
That princes three,
Shall come on the twelfth day:
Then let Me rest
Upon thy breast,
And sing by by, lullay."

6 "Now tell me, sweetest Lord, I pray,
Thou art my love and dear,
How shall I nurse Thee to Thy mind,
And make Thee glad of cheer ?
For all Thy will
I would fulfil,
I need no more to say;
And for all this
I will Thee kiss,
And sing by by, lullay,"

7 "My Mother dear, when time it be,
Then take Me up aloft,
And set Me up upon thy knee,
And handle Me full soft;
And in thy arm,
Thou wilt Me warm,
And keep Me night and day:
And if I weep,
And may not sleep,
Thou sing by by, lullay."

8 "Now, sweetest Lord, since it is so,
That Thou art most of might,
I pray Thee grant a boon to me,
If it be meet and right;
That child or man
That will or can,
Be merry on this day;
To bliss them bring,
And I shall sing,
Lullay, by by, lullay."

Source: Christmas Carols New and Old: Series 1 and 2 #25

Text Information

First Line: On yester night I saw a sight
Title: The Virgin and Child
Source: Old English
Publication Date: 1871
Copyright: This text in in the public domain in the United States because it was published before 1923.