Thursday, 6 December 2012

Adam Lay Ybounden

One of my favourite Adventy songs.

It's never gonna be a great favourite with proper protestants, this. But I do like the idea that the Fall was a good thing - not in itself, but because it gave the chance for grace to abound. Not that I believe the Fall was a historical event (or even an historical event) - but why let history get in the way of Truth?

If you need the words and translation, they're here.


  1. I remember this one from Cambridge days too. I also remember, as a Christian Union type, finding a theological error in every single line of the hymn. But I agree that it's great music - though I can't play it at the moment as I am at work.

  2. one of my favourites too.

  3. It will be the introit for our candlelit 9 Lessons and Carols this year.
    I like the fact (it's in Wikipedia so it must be a fact!) that other poems included on same page in the original manuscript include "I have a gentil cok". Presumably to be sung at the Feast of the Circumcision.

  4. I do love this! I don't think I've ever had a problem with the theology (but then I've always been beyond redemption as far as my Protestant friends are concerned...). I'm very fond of Benjamin Britten's setting too, with its wonderful crunchy Deo Gratias which does seem to emphasise that the Fall is/was, as you say, a Good Thing: echoes of "o happy fault" in the Easter Vigil. Or at the very least that God can bring something worth being thankful for from our worst screw-ups and actually, *pace* my above-mentioned Protestant friends, nothing is beyond redemption.

    The Mediaeval Baebes did a jolly version as well.


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