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The Digital Index of Middle English Verse
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DIMEV 3817
IMEV 2377
NIMEV 2377
Now well may me mirths make
A macaronic Christmas carol — five quatrains (aaab) with Latin caudae and burden (b): Letabundus exultet fidelys chorus Alleluia
Subjects: carols, Nativity
Versification: — four-line — aaab
Macaronic: Latin



Manuscript Witnesses:
1.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Arch. Selden. B. 26 (SC 3340), f. 10
First Lines:
Now wel may we merthis make
ffor vs ihesu man hode hath take
only for our synnes sake
Alleluya
Last Lines:
…So childede þe maide with oute wem
Pari forma
Facsimiles:
Stainer, Sir John, John Stainer, C. Stainer, and Edward Williams Byron Nicholson. Early Bodleian music; sacred & secular songs, together with other MS. compositions in the Bodleian Library, Oxford, ranging from about A.D. 1185 to about A.D. 1505. London, 1901; repr. Farnborough, Hants, England: Gregg, 1967.
Editions:
Stainer, Sir John, John Stainer, C. Stainer, and Edward Williams Byron Nicholson. Early Bodleian music; sacred & secular songs, together with other MS. compositions in the Bodleian Library, Oxford, ranging from about A.D. 1185 to about A.D. 1505. London, 1901; repr. Farnborough, Hants, England: Gregg, 1967: 2.109.
Padelford, Frederick Morgan. “English songs in manuscript Selden B.26.” Anglia 36 (1912): 79-115: 91.
Stevens, John, ed. Mediaeval Carols. Musica Britannica 4. London: Stainer and Bell, 1952, 2nd ed. 1958: 14.
Robbins, Rossell Hope. Early English Christmas Carols. New York and London: Columbia UP, 1961: 20.
Saupe, Karen, ed. Middle English Marian Lyrics. Kalamazoo, MI: Western Michigan University for TEAMS, 1998: 65-6; 192-3.
2.Source: London, British Library Addit. 5665, ff. 36v
Note: 3 stanzas and burden.
Attributed Title: de natiuitate
Editions:
Fehr, Bernhard. “Die Lieder der Hs. Add. 5665 (Ritson’s Folio-MS).” Archiv für das Studium der neueren Sprachen und Literaturen 106 (1901): 262-85: 273.
Stevens, John, ed. Mediaeval Carols. Musica Britannica 4. London: Stainer and Bell, 1952, 2nd ed. 1958: 94.
Rickert, Edith, ed. Ancient English Christmas Carols. London: Chatto & Windus, 1910: 177.
3.Source: Taunton, Somerset Records Office MS D/B/bw 123 [olim Bridgewater, Corporation Muniments 123], dorse
First Lines:
Now well may we myrthys make
For Ihesu mankynd hath take…
Last Lines:
…Oute of the wych commyghth a mervelose streme
So dud þat mayde wiþowtyn weme
Pari forma
Note: On the back of a parchment indenture.
Attributed Title: Holy holy holy holy holy & yffy yffy (head); Holy holy & yfy yffy holy yffy Holi (end)
Editions:
Historical Manuscripts Commission, Third Report, with Appendix. (1872): App., 316.
Dilks, T. Bruce. Pilgrims in Old Bridgwater. Bridgewater: East Gate Press, 1927: 35.
Greene, Richard Leighton. The Early English Carols. Oxford: Clarendon, 1935; 2nd ed., rev., Oxford: Clarendon, 1977: 10-11; 1977, 7.
Greene, Richard Leighton, ed. A Selection of English Carols. Clarendon Medieval and Tudor Series. Oxford: Clarendon, 1962: 60.