Hilary, Hilarius Pictaviensis, Saint, Bishop, and, according to St. Augustine, "the Illustrious Doctor of all the Churches," was born of heathen parents of an illustrious family and great wealth, at Poictiers early in the fourth century. He received, as a heathen, an excellent classical education, so that St. Jerome says of him that he "was brought up in the pompous school of Gaul, yet had culled the flowers of Grecian science, and became the Rhone of Latin eloquence." Early in life he married, and had a daughter named Abra, Afra, or Apra. About 350 he renounced, in company with his wife and daughter, the Pagan religion of his family, and became a devout and devoted Christian. After his baptism he so gained the respect and love of his fello… Go to person page >
Beata nobis gaudia Anni reduxit orbita. [Whitsuntide.] This hymn is sometimes ascribed to St. Hilary of Poitiers; but as in the case of others, upon insufficient evidence. The full text, in 6 stanzas of 4 lines, is given in Daniel, i., No. 7, together with the Roman Breviary version, and a few references, and notes. Mone, No. 183, gives the text from manuscripts of the 13th and 14th centuries, supplies readings therefrom and closes with a note. Daniel, iv. pp. 160-161, quotes Mone almost verbatim, and adds readings from a Rheinau manuscript of the 11th century. The text is also found in two manuscripts of the 11th century, in the British Museum (Jul. A. vi. f. 53 b., Vesp. D. xii. f. 78); the Latin Hymns of the Anglo-Saxon Church, 1851, p. 93, where it is printed from an 11th century manuscript at Durham; in the Hymnarium Sarisburiense, Lond. 1851, pp. 113,114; in Card. Newman's Hymni Ecclesiae, 1838 and 1865; in Simrock, 1868; and other collections.
This hymn must not be confounded with "Beata nobis gaudia dant militum solemnia," given in Mone, No. 736, of which there are no translations into English. [Rev. W. A. Shoults, B.D.]
Translations in common use:—
Bound roll the weeks our hearts to greet. By W. J. Blew, written cir. 1850, first printed on a broadsheet, and then in his Hymn and Tune Book, 1st ed., 1852, 2nd, 1855, in 4 stanzas of 8 lines. It was also included in the People's Hymnal, 1867.
-- Excerpts from John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)