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The Digital Index of Middle English Verse
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DIMEV 705
IMEV 427.5
NIMEV 427.5
At his birth Thou heardest angel sing
The tribulations of the Virgin — in couplets
Note: Followed by 160.
Subjects: Virgin Mary, sorrows of
Versification: — two-line — aa



Manuscript Witnesses:
1.Source: Oxford, Balliol College 149, f. 12v
Transcription:
At his burþ þow hurdist angell syng
Ande now seest his frendis wepyng
Atte his burþe kyngges & schephurdis dede hym humage & worchip
& now al maner men doþ spit & schenschip
At his burþe þu wantid womans wo
But as we felis now hit is not so
Some tyme þow hadest cause to syng lullay
But þi song is alle walouway
Somme tyme þu fedist hyme wyþe þi milke at his hese
& now þe iewis fedeþ hyme wyþe bittir galle at his diseise
Somme tyme þu fondist hym sittyng in þe middelle of doctours in þe temple
& now þu fondist hym in midill of þe iewis on þe Crosse
Note: Written as prose; preceded by five lines that also seem to be verse: ‘O blesful mayden & moder þys his a wondirful chaunge / þe angel bihete þe þat crist sculde be þi sonne & duelle wiþ þe / And now he takeþ þe a newe sone & goþ fram þe / þe angel said to þe þat þe fruit of þi wombe sculde be blessid / & now þe dome of þe ȝewis hit haþ cursid’ (f. 12v, written as prose).
Editions:
Coxe, Henry Octavius. Catalogus codicum mss. qui in collegiis aulisque oxoniensibus…. Oxon: e Typographeo academico, 1852: 46.
2.Source: Worcester, Worcester Cathedral Library F.10, f. 12v
Transcription:
At hys burth thou harde angels syngynge
And now þow seye hys frendes wopynge…
…Som tyme þou fonde hym in te mydyl off þe doctors in þe temple
Ande now þou ffyndyst hyme hangyng in þe mydyl off þe Iewes on þe kross
Note: Six couplets; two additional verse lines at the beginning: þe angell sayde to þe þat þe fruyt off þi body sulde be blyssyde / Ande now in þe dome of þe Iewys It es a cursede.
Editions:
Floyer, John Kestell, and Sidney Graves Hamilton. Catalogue of Manuscripts Preserved in the Chapter Library of Worcester Cathedral. Oxford: for the Worcester Historical Society, by James Parker, 1906: 6.
Owst, Gerald Robert. Literature and Pulpit in Medieval England. Cambridge: UP, 1933: 541.
Saupe, Karen, ed. Middle English Marian Lyrics. Kalamazoo, MI: Western Michigan University for TEAMS, 1998: 90; 218.