While shepherds watched their flocks by night,
All seated on the ground,
The angel of the Lord came down,
And glory shone around:
"Fear not !" said he (For mighty dread
had seized their troubled mind)
"Glad tidings of great joy I bring
To you and all mankind.
"To you in David's town, this day
Is born, of David's line,
A Saviour, who is Christ the Lord;
And this shall be the sign:
"The heavenly babe you there shall find
To human view displayed.
All meanly wrapped in swaddling bands,
And in a manger laid."
Thus spake the seraph : and forthwith
Appeared a shining throng
Of angels, praising God, who thus
Addressed their joyful song:
"All glory be to God on high,
And to the earth be peace;
from heaven to men
Begin and never cease."