Holy Innocents

Lovely flowers of martyrs, hail!
Smitten by the tyrant foe,
On life’s threshold, as the gale
Strews the roses ere they blow.

First to die for Christ—sweet lambs.
At the very altar ye,
With your fatal crowns and palms,
Sport in your simplicity.

Yet is Herod’s wrath in vain,
Though a thousand babes he slay;
Christ, amid a thousand slain,
Is in safety borne away.

Honour, virtue, glory, merit,
Be to thee, O Virgin’s Son,
With the Father and the Spirit,
While eternal ages run.

Henry Formby, ed., First Series of Hymns and Songs for the Use of Catholic Schools and Families (London: Burns and Lambert, 1853).

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