A Poor Brother's Hymnal
Monday, March 06, 2006
  Lo, How a Rose
C F C Am / Dm C G/B Am G C / x 2
C G/B Am G / G F Am / Dm Am G C

1. Lo, how a rose e'er blooming,
From tender stem hath sprung!
From Jesse’s lineage coming, [1]
As men of old have sung. [2]

It came, a floweret bright, [3]
Amid the cold of winter
When half spent was the night

2. Isaiah 'twas foretold it,
The Rose I have in mind
With Mary we behold it,
The Virgin mother kind

To show God's love aright, [4]
She bore to us a Savior [5]
When half spent was the night

3. The shepherds heard the story
Proclaimed by angels bright,
How Christ, the Lord of Glory
Was born on earth this night.

To Bethlehem they sped
And in the manger they found him,
As angels heralds said.

4. This Flower, whose fragrance tender
With sweetness fills the air,
Dispels with glorious splendor
The darkness everywhere;

True man, yet very God,
From Sin and death he saves us,
And lightens every load.

Alternate 3th Verse, trans., H. Brueckner, from O. Hartwig, ed., The Wartburg Hymnal (Chicago: Wartburg Publishing House, 1918):

3. O sweetest Flower, I Love Thee!
A light pure and devine
In beauty shine above me,
Fill Thou my heart’s deep shrine!

All darkness drive away,
Save me from sin and sorrow,
Let me be blest for aye!

Citing as the source: Trier Gesangbuch


1. Lo, a fair Rose a-blooming
From tender root hath sprung;
Of Jesse's lineage coming
As men a-fore-time sung;

It bears a Flow'ret bright,
While reigns the cold mid-winter
And darkest is the night.

2. This little Rose I'm singing,
Whereof Isaiah spoke,
Mary to us is bringing,
A maid of humble folk;

By God's eternal might
For us a Child she beareth,
While darkest is the night.

3. The floweret so lowly,
Whose fragrance none can tell,
With brightness strange and holy
Doth all our dark dispel:

True man, true God is He;
From every ill he saveth;
God grant we saved may be.

Sheet Music From Hutchins

Lo_A_Fair_Rose_462.gif (192091 bytes)


1. Lo, how a rose e'er blooming,
From tender root hath sprung;
To all the world bestowing
What men of old have sung.

There bloomed a lovely flow'r
Though winter's cold was blowing,
And midnight was the hour.

2. Lo, how a rose came springing
Isaiah did proclaim;
While all the heav'ns were singing
The rose by Mary came,

Through God's almighty pow'r
The world salvation bringing,
Though midnight was the hour


1. Lo, how a rose e’er blooming,
On tender root has grown.
A Rose by prophet’s singing,
To all the world made known.

The Rose ‘midst winter’s cold;
A lonely blossom bearing,
In former days foretold.

2. This Rose then of my story,
Isaiah did proclaim.
What God ordain’d in glory,
By blessed Mary came.

The Child the Virgin bore,
The world’s salvation bringing
Through Him for evermore.

3. The Rosebud small and tender
Gives fragrance every day.
And by It’s brilliant splendor
Makes darkness pass away.

True God, true Man, we pray,
Help us in ev’ry sorrow,
And guard us on our way.


1. I know a flow'r it springeth
From earth a tender shoot:
As olden prophet singeth,
From Jesse came the root

That bore a blossom bright,
In depth of chilly Winter,
About the dead of night.

2. This plant, with blossom laden,
As spake Esay of yore,
Is Mary, spotless maiden,
For us this flow'ret bore;

By God's eternal will,
A seemly Babe she childeth,
Yet maid remaineth still.

3. Praise, honour, to the Father,
The Son, the Spirit blest;
And Mary, God's own Mother,
For help we make request:

Beseech thy dearest Son
That He would be our Refuge
And shrive us, every one.


1. A spotless Rose is blowing,
Sprung from a tender root,
Of ancient seers’ foreshowing,
Of Jesse promised fruit;

Its fairest bud unfolds to light
Amid the cold, cold winter,
And in the dark midnight.

2. The Rose which I am singing,
Whereof Isaiah said,
Is from its sweet root springing
In Mary, purest Maid;

For, through our God’s great love and might,
The blessed Babe she bare us
In a cold winter’s night.

Through God's great love and might
The Blessed Babe she bare us
In a cold, cold winter's night.


1. Behold a branch is growing
As of loveliest form and grace,
As prophets sung, foreknowing;
It springs from Jesse's race

And bears one little Flow’r [1]
In midst of coldest winter,
At deepest midnight hour.

2. Isaiah hath foretold It
In words of promise sure,
And Mary' s arms enfold It,
A virgin meek and pure.

Through God's eternal will
This Child to her is given
At midnight calm and still.

3. The shepherds heard the story,
Proclaimed by angels bright,
How Christ, the Lord of Glory,
Was born on earth this night.

To Bethlehem they sped
And in the manger found him,
As angel heralds said.

4. This Flower, whose fragrance tender [2]
With sweetness fills the air,
Dispels with glorious splendor
The darkness everywhere.

True Man, yet very God;
From sin and death He saves us
And lightens every load. [3]

5. O Savior, Child of Mary,
Who felt our human woe;
O Savior, King of Glory.
Who dost our weakness know,

Bring us at length, we pray.
To the bright courts of heaven
And to the endless day.


1. I know a Rose tree springing
Forth from an ancient root
As men of old we singing
From Jesse came the shoot

That bore a blossom bright
A-mid the cold of winter
When half spent was the night

2. This rose-tree, blossom laden
Whereof Isaiah spake
Is Mary, spotless maiden [1]
Who mothered, for our sake

The little Child, newborn
By God's eternal counsel
On that first Christmas morn


A Branch So Fair Has Blossomed

Words: Stanzas 1-2, Es ist ein Reis entsprungen, 15th Century German carol

Translator Unknown

Music: Es Ist Ein Ros, Anonymous, 16th Century
(Arr. by Michael Praetorius, 1609)
MIDI / Noteworthy Composer
Meter: 76 76 676
Sheet music available at RoDeby Music Company

See Notes

1. A Branch so fair has blossomed
From tender parent stem,
Out of the rod of Jesse,
As told by godly men,
And brought a Flow'r so bright,
Well in the midst of winter
And darkness of the night.

2. This little Rose, so lovely,
That sprang from Jesse's rod
A lowly virgin brought us,
The favored one of God;
By His decree and might
A holy Child she bare us
One blessed Christmas night.

3. This little Flow'r, so fragrant,
My heart fills with delight,
For with its shining splendor
It drives away the night.
True man, and yet God's Son,
Saves us from sin and sorrow,
And when life's day is done.

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