Thursday, December 6, 2012

December 7

The ceiling of Bell Harry tower, at Canterbury Cathedral

"Carol of the Bells"
performed by The St. Olaf Choir

Hark how the bells,
sweet silver bells,
all seem to say,
throw cares away

Christmas is here,
bringing good cheer,
to young and old,
meek and the bold,

Ding dong ding dong
that is their song
with joyful ring
all caroling

One seems to hear
words of good cheer
from everywhere
filling the air

Oh how they pound,
raising the sound,
o'er hill and dale,
telling their tale,

Gaily they ring
while people sing
songs of good cheer,
Christmas is here,

Merry, merry, merry, merry Christmas,
Merry, merry, merry, merry Christmas,

On on they send,
on without end,
their joyful tone
to every home

Ding dong ding ding... dong!

"Carol of the Bells" (also known as the "Ukrainian Bell Carol") is a Christmas carol adapted from the Ukrainian "Shchedryk" by Mykola Dmytrovych Leontovych, which was first performed in December 1916 by students at Kiev University.

"Shchedryk" tells the tale of a swallow flying into a household to proclaim the plentiful year that the family will have. The title is derived from the Ukrainian word for "bountiful." In the Ukraine, the song is sung on the eve of the Julian New Year.

The English language lyrics were written in 1936 by Peter Wilhousky. The song reminded Wilhousky of beautiful ringing bells, and he captured that imagery in his lyrics.

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