Shall I


Shall I, Mother, shall I?

Shall I, mother, shall I, shall I do so?1
Shall I die for man his sake,
And I never sinned thereto?

1. I was born in a stall
    Between beastës two,
To this world brought in thrall,
    To live in care and woe.
        Shall I, mother, shall I, shall I do so?
        Shall I die for man his sake,
        And I never sinned thereto?

2. When I was eight days old,
    The law fulfilled I tho,2
Circumcised as a child;
    Then began all my woe.
        Shall I, mother, shall I, shall I do so?
        Shall I die for man his sake,
        And I never sinned thereto?

3. Though my Father be a king,
    Myself I went him fro,
Into this world to suffer many a thing --
    See, man, what thou has do!3
        Shall I, mother, shall I, shall I do so?
        Shall I die for man his sake,
        And I never sinned thereto?

4. Man, I am thy friend ay;
    Thyself art thy foe;
To my Father look thou pray,
    And leave thy sins that thou hast do.
        Shall I, mother, shall I, shall I do so?
        Shall I die for man his sake,
        And I never sinned thereto?

5. The Jews were so fell,
    That to Judas could they go;
They kissed me, as I you tell,
    "Hail, king!" said they tho.
        Shall I, mother, shall I, shall I do so?
        Shall I die for man his sake,
        And I never sinned thereto?

6. They bound me to a pillar anon,
    Hand and foot, both two;
They scourgëd me with scourges soon;
    The blood ran from my body fro.
        Shall I, mother, shall I, shall I do so?
        Shall I die for man his sake,
        And I never sinned thereto?

7. They clothed me in a mantel red,
    From the top to the toe,
With a crown of thorn on my head;
    With staves they beat it thereto.
        Shall I, mother, shall I, shall I do so?
        Shall I die for man his sake,
        And I never sinned thereto?

8. They brought me into Caiaphas' hall,
    Where he was bishop tho;
False witness on me they 'gan call.
    Mother, what shall I do?
        Shall I, mother, shall I, shall I do so?
        Shall I die for man his sake,
        And I never sinned thereto?

9. I took the Cross on my back full still;
    To Calvary then must I go;
I set it down upon an hill,
    With other crosses mo.
        Shall I, mother, shall I, shall I do so?
        Shall I die for man his sake,
        And I never sinned thereto?

10. They hanged me up (in) that tide;
    Hands and feet they nailed also;
And a thief on every side,
    To liken my body to.
        Shall I, mother, shall I, shall I do so?
        Shall I die for man his sake,
        And I never sinned thereto?

11. With a spear both sharp and keen
    They clave my heart in two;
Water and blood thereout ran --
    See, man, what thou hast do!
        Shall I, mother, shall I, shall I do so?
        Shall I die for man his sake,
        And I never sinned thereto?

12. With a spear both sharp and good
    They clave my heart in three,
Then yielded I up the ghost and died,
    That here all men may see.
        Shall I, mother, shall I, shall I do so?
        Shall I die for man his sake,
        And I never sinned thereto?

13. God that died on the Rood,
    And spread His arms in the East,
Send us all His blessing,
    And send us all good rest!
        Shall I, mother, shall I, shall I do so?
        Shall I die for man his sake,
        And I never sinned thereto