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A Virgin Most Pure

1. A virgin most pure, as the Prophets do tell,
Hath brought forth a baby1, as it hath befell,
To be our Redeemer from death, hell and sin,
Which Adam's transgression had wrapped us in.

Aye, and therefore be you merry,
Rejoice and be merry,
Set sorrow aside;
Christ Jesus our Savior was born on this tide.3

2. At Bethlehem city in Jewry4 a City there was5
Where Joseph and Mary together did pass,
And there to be taxed, with many one more,
For C-sar commanded the same should be so. [Refrain]

3. But, when they had entered the city so fair5a
A number of people so mighty was there,
That Joseph and Mary, whose substance was small,
Could get in the Inn there6 no lodging at all. [Refrain]

4. Then were they constrained in a stable to lye,
Where horses and asses6a they us'd for to tie;
Their lodging so simple they held it no scorn,
But against the next morning our Saviour was born. [Refrain]

5. The King of all kings7 to this world being brought,
Small store of fine linen to wrap him was sought,
And when she8 had swaddled her young son so sweet,
Within an ox manger she laid him to sleep. [Refrain]

6. Then God sent an Angel from Heaven so high,
To certain poor Shepherds in fields where they lye,
And bade9 them no longer in sorrow to stay,
Because that our Saviour was born on this day. [Refrain]

7. Then presently after the Shepherds did spy
A number of Angels that stood10 in the sky;
Who joyfully talked and sweetly did sing,
To God be all glory our Heavenly King. [Refrain]

Sandys added this verse, which was not found in Gilbert, 1822 or 1823.

8. Three certain Wise Princes, they thought it most meet
To lay their rich offerings at our Saviour's feet;
Then the Shepherds consented, and to Bethlehem did go,
And when they came thither, they found it was so. [Refrain]

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