Hans Leo Hassler
(1564 - 1612)

Hassler : Nisi Dominus aedificaverit : illustration

Nisi Dominus aedificaverit
(S.A.T.T.B. + reduction)
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Cantiones sacrae, 1591 nos. 17 & 18.
Lyrics: Psalm 127

Nisi Dominus ædificaverit domum, in vanum laboraverunt qui ædificant eam.
Nisi Dominus custodierit civitatem, frustra vigilat qui custodit eam.
Vanum est vobis ante lucem surgere: surgite postquam sederitis, qui manducatis panem doloris. Cum dederit dilectis suis somnum,
ecce hæreditas Domini, filii: merces, fructus ventris.
Sicut sagittæ in manu potentis, ita filii excussorum.
Beatus vir qui implevit desiderium suum ex ipsis: non confundetur cum loquetur inimicis suis in porta.

Except the Lord build the house: their labour is but lost that build it.
Except the Lord keep the city: the watchman waketh but in vain.
It is but lost labour that ye haste to rise up early, and so late take rest, and eat the bread of carefulness: for so he giveth his beloved sleep.
Lo, children and the fruit of the womb: are an heritage and gift that cometh of the Lord.
Like as the arrows in the hand of the giant: even so are the young children.
Happy is the man that hath his quiver full of them: they shall not be ashamed when they speak with their enemies in the gate.