Rorate coeli desuper!

Author: William Dunbar, 1460-1520
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Rorate coeli desuper!

1 Heavens, distil your balmy showers;
For now is risen the bright Daystar,
From the rose Mary, flower of flowers:
The clear Sun, whom no cloud devours,
Surmounting Phoebus in the east,
Is comen of His heav’nly towers,
Et nobis puer natus est.

2 Sinners be glad, and penance do,
And thank your Maker heartfully;
For He that ye might not come to,
To you is comen, fully humbly,
Your soulès with His blood to buy,
And loose you of the fiend’s arrest,
And only of His own mercy;
Pro nobis puer natus est.

3 Celestial fowlès in the air,
Sing with your notès upon the height,
In firthès and in forests fair
Be mirthful now at all your might;
For passèd is your dully night;
Aurora has the cloudès pierced,
The sun is risen with gladsome light,
Et nobis puer natus est.

4 Sing, heaven imperial, most of height,
Regions of air make harmony,
All fish in flood and fowl of flight,
Be mirthful and make melody;
All Gloria in excelsis cry,
Heaven, earth, sea, man, bird and beast;
He that is crowned above the sky
Pro nobis puer natus est.

Author: William Dunbar, 1460-1520

William Dunbar, (born 1460/65, Scotland—died before 1530), Middle Scots poet attached to the court of James IV who was the dominant figure among the Scottish Chaucerians (see makar) in the golden age of Scottish poetry. He was probably of the family of the earls of Dunbar and March and may have received an M.A. degree from St. Andrews in 1479. It is believed that he was a Franciscan novice and travelled to England and France in the King’s service. In 1501 he was certainly in England, probably in connection with the arrangements for the marriage of James IV and Margaret Tudor, which took place in 1503. In 1500 he was granted a pension of £10 by the King. By 1504 he was in priest’s orders, and in 1510 he received, as a mark of roya… Go to person page >

Text Information

First Line: Rorate coeli desuper!
Title: Rorate
Author: William Dunbar, 1460-1520
Language: English
Copyright: Public Domain


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