Ales diei nuntius

lucem propinquam praecinit;

nos excitator mentium

iam Christus ad vitam vocat.


    5Auferte, clamat, lectulos

aegros, soporos, desides:

castique recti ac sobrii

vigilate, iam sum proximus.


Post solis ortum fulgidi

    10serum est cubile spernere,

ni parte noctis addita

tempus labori adieceris.


Vox ista, qua strepunt aves

stantes sub ipso culmine

  15paulo ante quam lux emicet,

nostri figura est iudicis.


Tectos tenebris horridis

stratisque opertos segnibus

suadet quietem linquere

  20iam iamque venturo die.


Ut, cum coruscis flatibus

aurora caelum sparserit,

omnes labore exercitos

confirmet ad spem luminis.


  25Hic somnus ad tempus datus

est forma mortis perpetis,

peccata ceu nox horrida

cogunt iacere ac stertere.


Sed vox ab alto culmine

  30Christi docentis praemonet,

adesse iam lucem prope,

ne mens sopori serviat:


Ne somnus usque ad terminos

vitae socordis opprimat

  35pectus sepultum crimine

et lucis oblitum suae.


Ferunt vagantes daemonas

laetos tenebris noctium,

gallo canente exterritos

  40sparsim timere et cedere.


Invisa nam vicinitas

lucis, salutis, numinis

rupto tenebrarum situ

noctis fugat satellites.


  45Hoc esse signum praescii

norunt repromissae spei,

qua nos soporis liberi

speramus adventum Dei.


Quae vis sit huius alitis,

  50salvator ostendit Petro,

ter antequam gallus canat

sese negandum praedicans.


Fit namque peccatum prius,

quam praeco lucis proximae

  55inlustret humanum genus

finemque peccandi ferat.


Flevit negator denique

ex ore prolapsum nefas,

cum mens maneret innocens,

  60animusque servaret fidem.


Nec tale quidquam postea

linguae locutus lubrico est,

cantuque galli cognito

peccare iustus destitit.


  65Inde est quod omnes credimus,

illo quietis tempore

quo gallus exsultans canit

Christum redisse ex inferis.


Tunc mortis oppressus vigor,

  70tunc lex subacta est tartari,

tunc vis diei fortior

noctem coegit cedere.


Iam iam quiescant inproba,

iam culpa furva obdormiat,

  75iam noxa letalis suum

perpessa somnum marceat.


Vigil vicissim spiritus

quodcumque restat temporis,

dum meta noctis clauditur,

  80stans ac laborans excubet.


Iesum ciamus vocibus

flentes, precantes, sobrii:

intenta supplicatio

dormire cor mundum vetat.


  85Sat convolutis artubus

sensum profunda oblivio

pressit, gravavit, obruit

vanis vagantem somniis.


Sunt nempe falsa et frivola,

  90quae mundiali gloria

ceu dormientes egimus:

vigilemus, hic est veritas.


Aurum, voluptas, gaudium,

opes, honores, prospera,

  95quaecumque nos inflant mala,

fit mane, nil sunt omnia.


Tu, Christe, somnum dissice,

tu rumpe noctis vincula,

tu solve peccatum vetus

  100novumque lumen ingere.


Awake! the shining day is born!

The herald cock proclaims the morn:

And Christ, the soul's Awakener, cries,

Bidding us back to life arise.


Away the sluggard's bed! away

The slumber of the soul's decay!

Ye chaste and just and temperate,

Watch! I am standing at the gate.


After the sun hath risen red

'Tis late for men to scorn their bed,

Unless a portion of the night

They seize for labours of the light.


Mark ye, what time the dawn draws nigh,

How 'neath the eaves the swallows cry?

Know that by true similitude

Their notes our Judge's voice prelude.


When hid by shades of dark malign

On beds of softness we recline,

They call us forth with music clear

Warning us that the day is near.


When breezes bright of orient morn

With rosy hues the heavens adorn,

They cheer with hope of gladdening light

The hearts that spend in toil their might.


Though sleep be but a passing guest

'Tis type of death's perpetual rest:

Our sins are as a ghastly night,

And seal with slumbers deep our sight.


But from the wide roof of the sky

Christ's voice peals forth with urgent cry,

Calling our sleep-bound hearts to rise

And greet the dawn with wakeful eyes.


He bids us fear lest sensual ease

Unto life's end the spirit seize

And in the tomb of shame us bind,

Till we are to the true light blind.


'Tis said that baleful spirits roam

Abroad beneath the dark's vast dome;

But, when the cock crows, take their flight

Sudden dispersed in sore affright.


For the foul votaries of the night

Abhor the coming of the light,

And shamed before salvation's grace

The hosts of darkness hide their face.


They know the cock doth prophesy

Of Hope's long-promised morning sky,

When comes the Majesty Divine

Upon awakened worlds to shine.


The Lord to Peter once foretold

What meaning that shrill strain should hold,

How he before cock-crow would lie

And thrice his Master dear deny.


For 'tis a law that sin is done

Before the herald of the sun

To humankind the dawn proclaims

And with his cry the sinner shames.


Then wept he bitter tears aghast

That from his lips the words had passed,

Though guileless he his soul possessed

And faith still reigned within his breast.


Nor ever reckless word he said

Thereafter, by his tongue betrayed,

But at the cock's familiar cry

Humbled he turned from vanity.


Therefore it is we hold to-day

That, as the world in stillness lay,

What hour the cock doth greet the skies,

Christ from deep Hades did arise.


Lo! then the bands of death were burst,

Shattered the sway of hell accurst:

Then did the Day's superior might

Swiftly dispel the hosts of Night.


Now let base deeds to silence fall,

Black thoughts be stilled beyond recall:

Now let sin's opiate spell retire

To that deep sleep it doth inspire.


For all the hours that still remain

Until the dark his goal attain,

Alert for duty's stern command

Let every soul a sentry stand.


With sober prayer on Jesus call;

Let tears with our strong crying fall;

Sleep cannot on the pure soul steal

That supplicates with fervent zeal.


Too long did dull oblivion cloud

Our motions and our senses shroud:

Lulled by her numbing touch, we stray

In dreamland's ineffectual way.


Bound by the dazzling world's soft chain

'Tis false and fleeting gauds we gain,

Like those who in deep slumbers lie:--

Let us awake! the truth is nigh.


Gold, honours, pleasure, wealth and ease,

And all the joys that mortals please,

Joys with a fatal glamour fraught--

When morning comes, lo! all are nought.


But thou, O Christ, put sleep to flight

And break the iron bands of night,

Free us from burden of past sin

And shed Thy morning rays within.

Roman Empire / Latin Authors / Praefatio / Preface / I. Hymnus ad Galli Cantum / I. Hymn at Cock-Crow / II. Hymnus Matutinus / II. Morning Hymn / III. Hymnus ante Cibum / III. Hymn before Meat / IV. Hymnus post Cibum / IV. Hymn after Meat / V. Hymnus ad Incensum Lucernae / V. Hymn for the Lighting of the Lamps / VI. Hymnus ante Somnum / VI. Hymn before Sleep / VII. Hymnus Ieiunantium / VII. Hymn for Those Who Fast / VIII. Hymnus post Ieiunium / VIII. Hymn after Fasting / IX. Hymnus Omnis Horae / IX. Hymn for All Hours / X. Hymnus ad Exequias Defuncti / X. Hymn for the Burial of the Dead / XI. Hymnus Kalendas Ianuarias / XI. Hymn for Christmas-Day / XII. Hymnus Epiphaniae / XII. Hymn for the Epiphany / Epilogus / Epilogue /