cock

Emblem in Christian art associated with Saint Peter with reference to his threefold denial of Christ before the cock crew. In Christian symbolism it stands also for vigilance and diligence. Two examples may be found in the hymns, “Ales diei nuntius,” sung at Lauds, Tuesday, and “Æterne rerum Conditor,” sung at Lauds, Sunday. In the former, W. Courthope’s translation of the first verse reads

As the bird, whose clarion gay
Sounds before the dawn is grey,
Christ, who brings the spirit’s day,
Calls us, close at hand.

In the latter, the second verse as found in “The Hymner” reads

Now the shrill cock proclaims the day,
And calls the sun’s awak’ning ray-
The wand’ring pilgrim’s guiding light,
That marks the watches night by night.