Quem pastores laudavere
Quem pastores laudavere. Latin, 15th century. This carol is found in a German MS from Hohenfurth Abbey dated 1410. The tune has become better known than the words, although the Latin text was in the Oxford Book of Carols (1928) and is retained in NOBC. According to NOBC it was originally in three verses, beginning ‘Quem pastores laudavere’, ‘Ad quem magi ambulabant’ and ‘Christo Regi, Deo nato’: this refers to the shepherds (‘pastores’) in verse 1 and the Wise Men (‘magi ambulabant’, verse 2), followed by a doxology. At some point a further verse was added before the doxology, ‘Exsultemus cum Maria’ (‘Let us rejoice with Mary’).
NOBC describes this as a German ‘Wechselgesang’, a hymn or...
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