Sunday, December 1, 2013


Today is the First Sunday of Advent

Conditor Alme Siderum is a seventh century hymn that was sung at Vespers during Advent.

CONDITOR alme siderum,
aeterna lux credentium,
Christe, redemptor omnium,
exaudi preces supplicum


CREATOR of the stars of night,
Thy people's everlasting light,
Jesu, Redeemer, save us all,
and hear Thy servants when they call.

It was almost completely revised in 1638 and became Creator Alme Siderum.

CREATOR alme siderum,
aeterna lux credentium,
Iesu, Redemptor omnium,
intende votis supplicum.


BRIGHT builder of the heavenly poles,
eternal light of faithful souls,
Jesus, Redeemer of mankind,
our humble prayers vouchsafe to mind.

Changes become more noticeable in subsequent verses.  In the second verse:

Thou, grieving that the ancient curse
should doom to death a universe,
hast found the medicine, full of grace,
to save and heal a ruined race.


Who, lest the fraud of hell's black king
should all men to destruction bring,
didst, by an act of generous love,
the fainting world's physician prove. 

For the most part the original seventh century hymn has been restored to the liturgy and the 1638 version harder to find, for often you will see it listed as Creator, but with the lyrics from Conditor.  For those with more intellectual or spiritual curiosity, the two hymns can be found at the following links.

For those without the intellectual or spiritual curiosity, here's just the darn song in English:


Me, I prefer the original.

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