An earthly tree a heavenly fruit - Cast off all doubtful care (William Byrd)
- Editor: David Fraser (submitted 2003-08-09). Score information: A4, 7 pages, 132 kB Copyright: CPDL
- Edition notes: Revised April 2008.
Title: An earthly tree an heavenly fruit
Composer: William Byrd
Description: A carol for Christmas day in two parts.
- Prima pars: An earthly tree an heavenly fruit (AA duet with viol consort)
- Seconda pars: Cast off all doubtful care (Chorus)
Original text and translations
1. An earthly tree a heavenly fruit it bear,
A case of clay contained a crown immortal
A crown of crowns, a King whose cost and care
Redeemed poor man, whose race before was thrall
To death, to doom, to pains of everlasting,
By His sweet death, scorns, stripes, and often fasting.
Cast of all doubtful care, exile and banish tears,
To joyful news divine, lend us your list’ning ears.
2. A star above the stars, a sun of light,
Whose blessed beams this wretched earth bespread
With hope of heaven and of God's Son the sight,
Which in our flesh and sinful soul lay dead.
O faith, O hope, O joys renowned for ever,
O lively life that deathless shall persever.
3. Then let us sing the lullabys of sleep
To this sweet babe, born to awake us all
From drowsy sin that made old Adam weep,
And by his fault gave to mankind the fall.
For lo! this day, the birth day, day of days,
Summons our songs to give Him laud and praise.