Wednesday, 27 December 2006

Three Kings from Persian lands afar

The Adoration of the Magi circa 1500

by (?) the Master of the Holy Kindred, Cologne, V&A Museum

Three kings from Persian lands afar

To Jordan follow the pointing star:

And this the quest of the travellers three,

Where the new-born King of the Jews may be.

Full royal gifts they bear for the King;

Gold, incense, myrrh are their offering.

Peter Cornelius, translated H N Bate

3 Comments:

Blogger The Goldfish said...

We used to sing this at the school carol service, held at a church on the school grounds every Christmas. It is a pretty tune, only nobody but the choir knew it, and every year the congregation would improvise, resulting in a complete dirge when the choir broke into the descant.

It thus has a special place in my affections.

Thursday, 28 December 2006 at 22:09:00 GMT  
Blogger Sally's Life said...

I do not wonder that it ended up a bit of a dirge - it was not written as a congregational carol, but as a tenor solo, the tenor singing 'Three Kings from Persian lands afar' etc... with the choir singing the old German Chorale 'How Brightly beams the morning star ...' over the top of it.
Now wonder everyone struggled with it !
But it is lovely and I have heard some dire renditions, and it was still wonderful.
I am currently listening to Bach's Christmas Oratorio - which I last sang in 1977 !

Saturday, 30 December 2006 at 19:01:00 GMT  
Blogger Shirzevor said...

I too love this combination. I am struggling to source a proper copy. It originated in the Oxfood Book of Carols I believe. Any other bright ideas of where I might find a copy please?

Monday, 30 August 2010 at 10:02:00 BST  

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