The Huron Carol, written in 1643 by Jesuit missionary and martyr,Jean de Brébeuf, a Christian missionary at Sainte-Marie among the Hurons in Canada. Brébeuf wrote the lyrics in the native language of the Huron/Wendat people; the song's original Huron title is "Jesous Ahatonhia" ("Jesus, he is born").
According to Jesuit Father Francis X. Heiser's accoun, the Hurons who escaped the Iroquois attacks preserved the hymn. They later settled at Loretto, near Quebec, led by other missionaries. Father Étienne de Villeneuve recorded the words of the hymn, which were found among his papers following his death in 1794.
Father Heiser gave the second stanza of Father de Brébeuf's hymn in the original Huron language. (He said that the Hurons have no M, so the missionaries substituted for it the French dipthong ou, so "Mary" appears as "Ouarie" (pronounced 'Warie').
Aloki ekwatatennonten shekwachiendaen Iontonk ontatiande ndio sen tsatonnharonnion Ouarie onnawakueton ndio sen tsatonnharonnion Iesous ahatonnia!
The song's melody is a traditional French folk song, "Une Jeune Pucelle" ("A Young Maid"). The well known English lyrics were written in 1926 by Jesse Edgar Middleton.
This recording is in all three languages: Huron/Wendat, French, and English.
The English words sung in this recording are different from the lyrics I've been able to find about the net and I don't know why. The English rendition of the text of the hymn as it appears here is from Selections from the Pius X Hymnal except for the second stanza, which is from Father Heiser's book.
The Huron Carol
Twas in the moon of wintertime When all the birds had fled, That mighty Gitchi Manitou Sent angel choirs instead; Before their light the stars grew dim, And wond'ring hunters heard the hymn: Jesus, your King is born, Jesus is born, In excelsis gloria.
O, harken to the angels' word, Do not decline To heed the message which you heard: The Child Divine, As they proclaim, has come this morn Of Mary pure. Let us adore. Jesus is born, In excelsis gloria.
Within a lodge of broken bark The tender Babe was found, A ragged robe of rabbit skin Enwrapp'd His beauty 'round; But as the hunter braves drew nigh, The angel song rang loud and high: Jesus, your King is born, Jesus is born, In excelsis gloria.
The earliest moon of wintertime Is not so round and fair As was the ring of glory on The helpless infant there. The chiefs from far before Him knelt With gifts of fox and beaver pelt. Jesus, your King is born, Jesus is born, In excelsis gloria.
O children of the forest free, O sons of Manitou, The Holy Child of earth and heav'n Is born today for you. Come kneel before the radiant boy; Who brings you beauty, peace and joy. Jesus, your King is born, Jesus is born, In excelsis gloria.