“A Virgin Most Pure”


"A virgin most pure, as the prophets do tell, Hath brought forth a baby, as it hath befell." "Set sorrows aside; Christ Jesus, our Savior, was born on this tide." Jesus is born in Bethlehem, in a stable -- you know the rest


The history of this song is a little murky; according to the _New Oxford Book of Carols_, the "rejoice and be merry" refrain and 11-syllable lines is attested as early as 1661. It then fades away for a century and a half until found in Gilbert and Sandys. Bradley cites the tune as "Admiral Benbow" as given in Chappell. - RBW


  1. ADDITIONAL: Ian Bradley, _The Penguin Book of Carols_ (1999), #3, "A Virgin Most Pure" (1 text)
  2. Roud #1378
  3. BI, PBOC003


Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1822 (Gilbert)
Keywords: Jesus religious animal
Found in: Britain(England)