‘It is an old story that all the beasts can talk, in the night between Christmas Eve and Christmas Day in the morning,’ as Beatrix Potter wrote in The Tailor of Gloucester. There were animals in the stable when Jesus was born, and they shouted the good news to the world. The cockerel shouted loudest. ‘Cock-a-doodle-doo!’
One of the windows in Iffley Church tells the story. The Cock stands at the top of the tree. He says, CHRISTUS NATUS EST! This is Latin for ‘Christ is born!’