The five lesser joys of Mary (Peter Warlock)

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  • (Posted 2009-12-15)  CPDL #20602:         
Editor: James Gibb (submitted 2009-12-15).   Score information: A4, 4 pages, 126 kB   Copyright: Personal
Edition notes: Arranged by James Gibb. This is a four-part a cappella arrangement of the original version for a solo voice. Includes a keyboard reduction of the a cappella choral score. It was first sung publicly by Ampthill Choral Society, UK on 14th December 2009. Revised files uploaded 9/4/21.

General Information

Title: The five lesser joys of Mary
Composer: Peter Warlock
Lyricist: Daniel Laurence Kelleher

Number of voices: 4vv   Voicing: SATB
Genre: SacredCarol

Language: English
Instruments: A cappella

First published: 1929

External websites:

Original text and translations

English.png English text

1  When Mary lay fretting that night in the cold
For Jesus, the young Lad, and Joseph, the old,
The ass and the oxen drew near for to warm
The young Lad and old man to keep them from harm.

2  When Mary lay thinking that night in the hay
What little thing she would give Jesus for play,
His Father in heaven hung out for a toy
The star, and young Jesus He carolled for joy.

3  When Mary was sad for the Babe at her breast,
To see the poor clouts in which he was dressed.
Then the three Kings in velvet came in to adore
The poor ragged Infant and knelt on the floor.


4  When Mary was sick in her heart with the fright
On the morning that Jesus strayed out of her sight,
O glory! she found him, so meek and so mild,
Confounding the doctors, the poor little Child.

5  When Mary, heartbroken, on Calvary's hill,
Saw Jesus droop over and lie very still,
She thought of the good times they had long ago
When he'd droop in her arms and she'd sing husheenlo.