1 Angels we have heard on high Sweetly singing o’er the plains, And the mountains in reply Echoing their joyous strains. (Refrain) Gloria, in excelsis Deo! Gloria, in excelsis Deo! 2 Shepherds, why this jubilee? Why your joyous strains prolong? What the gladsome tidings be Which inspire your heavenly song? [Refrain] 3 Come to Bethlehem and see Christ, whose birth the angels sing; Come, adore on bended knee, Christ the Lord, the newborn King. [Refrain] 4 See Him in a manger laid, Whom the choirs of angels praise; Mary, Joseph, lend your aid, While our hearts in love we raise. [Refrain]
The tune, GLORIA (French), is an arrangement of that of the traditional French carol "". It differs in minor ways from the original and from the other main hymnal arrangement, IRIS, which was the original tune paired with James Montgomery's Christmas hymn "Angels from the realms of glory. IRIS is the usual arrangement sung with G. R. Woodward's translation of this carol, Shepherds in the field abiding.