A Treasury of Christmas Carols
         
 

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Over the years, I've received numerous requests for old hymns and carols. Although there's a lot of content on this site, there's always more to find.

These are some emails from visitors who remember a favorite old hymn or carol that I've been unable to find. I've set up this page to elicit your help. If you have any details about any of these hymns or carols, please  . I'll get in touch with the person who was looking for that particular song. I'll also post the song to the website, if it is in the public domain.

All emails are edited to remove any personally identifying content. Any note in square brackets is from me. Searches were performed on each set of lyrics at the time I received the email; there were no hits.

When replying, please copy and paste the line beginning "Received," or you may copy and paste the entire message if you wish.

Thanks for your help!

 


Received July 25, 2010 from Carol:

I am looking for the lyrics and music to a Christmas song I sang in a duet with a friend in a Christmas play about 45-50 years ago.  The chorus went :"
As wise men of old gave incense and gold,
your treasures as gifts you may bring.
But with Him impart your will and your heart,
make Jesus your Lord and King."

Can you help me find it?  Thanks!!!
 

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Received October 6, 2009 from Clark concerning "Mummer's Carol":

[I'm looking for an arrangement] I used to do in high school forty years ago, and it’s really an amazing arrangement. 

It’s titled simply “Mummers’ Carol”  You are showing the first page [Broadwood's tune from "Sussex Songs"], which starts with a solo:
A glorious angel from heaven came that to the virgin maid
Strange news and tidings of great joy the humble Mary had,
The humble Mary had.

Then a duet comes in with:
Each mortal man remembers well when Christ was put to scorn.
He was taken to a judgment seat and crowned with a thorn,
And crowned with a thorn.

Then it builds a bit:
Each mortal man remembers well when Christ was wrapped in clay;
He was taken to a sepulcher where never man did lay,
Where never man did lay.

Then they pull out all the stops with:
God bless you home, your children too, your cattle and your store!
The Lord increase you day by day and give you more and more!
And give you more and more!

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Received January 6, 2008, with title "Unknown Christmas Song Name":

I have been desperately been searching for a Christmas Song whose name I am not familiar with.  I know it is an arrangement of many Christmas songs into one complete song.  Another part that I know that there is a saxophone solo at the end and it includes the song we wish you a merry Christmas. 

By this time I haven't found any possible names of song which include various song within the song.  If you are aware of any song that might be somewhat like what I am asking for, please do tell me.  Or if you can suggest anywhere I can find or some other person I can ask.

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Received November 18, 2007, from Brenda:

I am looking for 2 carols from 54 years ago when I was a top soprano (now I am a Barbershop bass or in Church choir ..a lady tenor!!) We had a great music mistress and she always found unusual carols for us every Christmas.

To my best memory the first is....(it may be from the Spanish).

O'er Bethlehem the stars are shining bright.
Our Lord is born to us tonight.
In a manger cold He lies a-sleeping
While saints ab-ove their wa-atch are keeping.

But I would hold You in my loving arms
And warm You with my kisses, Jesu.

The angels did descend from heaven to earth
And there did sing the Saviour's birth
Shepherd's and three wise men Him adore
And He'll be worshipped e-evermo-ore. (I think!)

But I would hold etc.

The second may have had a title something about the Virgin wearing a gown of blue. It too may be from the Spanish or Portuguese.

The mid section to end was...

Cerulean blue her mantle shone,
As if the winter nights had gone
And Spring had come in place of them.
That the blue heavens might shine above the rose that bloomed
In Bethlehem.

[No hits for either set of lyrics on a major search engine.]

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Received September 17, 2007, from Nancy:

In my elementary school in Des Moines, IA, the students used to perform a Christmas program every year and one of the songs we sang was a favorite of mine, but I have never heard it since then. I don't know its title or its author, and I only remember a small part of the first verse, but I sure would like to find it again! It went like this:

"Hark, ye what angel voices, above far Bethlehem are crying,
See in a lowly manger tonight the Son of God is lying . . . "
(and I don't know the rest)

I remember the tune and the harmony, but I know that's not much help!

Received December 8, 2009, from Joyce:

I too am looking for the words and music for "Hark ye what angel voices" that Nancy wrote about Sept 17, 2007. I mostly remember the words, but would love to see/hear the music. It may have been a Scott Foresman school music book for 4th, 5th or 6th grade. Or maybe it was just an Iowa thing. Nancy went to school in Des Moines and I was at Burlington.

The words I recall are:

Hark ye what angel voices above far Bethlehem are crying,

See in the lowly manger tonight the Son of God is lying,

Soft on the hay the Christ child is sleeping,

While lowly shepherds watch near him keeping,

Harps angelic playing, tell the wondrous tidings tonight.

[September, 2007: The only hit on a search of a major search engine was from a school program in 1956 in Ontario, Canada. The program gave the title "Hark Ye, What Angel Voices."]

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Received December 4, 2006, from Debby:

There are three songs (or parts of songs) I learned about 45 years ago in grade school -- a public school no less -- that I haven't been able to find anywhere on the net. They all have lovely melodies and nice harmonies, but I wish I could remember the whole songs or at least knew the titles. They were sung one right after the other without pause. The parts remembered are as follows:

I gazed and gazed
with eager wondering eyes
and in this light I see
a picture of a little child
upon his mother's knee
~*~
Over the manger hangs a star
sing ye noel
bringing good tidings near and far
sing ye noel
over the manger hangs a star
sing ye noel
bringing good tidings near and far
sing ye noel
~*~
One night hung deep
upon the eastern hill top
when peaceful sleep
enfolded all the world
the angels came
they flew from out the frosty skies
His glories to proclaim
Noel, Noel, His glories to proclaim
Neel, Noel, His glories to proclaim

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Received from Lois on Marcy 3, 2006:

I have the printed words to a carol we sang in the Presbyterian 
Church in Neenah, WI in the late 40's. The authors are given as Flora 
Kirkland and I. H. Meredith (1872-1962). I cannot find this in any 
hymn books nor any information of the web. I would actually like the 
music and I would appreciate any help you can give.

The title is There Were Wise Men. The first verse is as follows:

There were wise men in an Eastern country
Who were watching for a heav'nly sign;
Who were waiting, waiting in their darkness,
For a long promised King divine.

Chorus:
'Twas the star of Bethle'm that they followed,
And it led them to the King of kings,
From their distant land to Him they traveled
How the story down the sages rings!
And they found Him whom they came to worship,
Found a babe all guarded by a star,
And they worshipped at the feet of Jesus,
ringing homage from their land afar.

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Received from John, January 2006:

This past Christmas I hear the most lovely Christmas song on the radio but they never gave what the title was.
 
The only thing that sticks in my head is the following from the refrain part of the song...
 
 
"and they hear      the angels sing"
 "           and they hear             the angles sing"
 
some stuff in between
 
and the song ends with a drawn out "O.... Christ the Lord"

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Received from Brian, January 2006:

I am trying to find the words to a hymn that starts ' While the lord lay dreaming, in a stable dim, Heaven's stars were beaming, peace, goodwill to him'.

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Received from Jill, December 2005:

Our late Grandma ... had the sheet music to this song and used to play it on the piano and my daughters and I would sing along…..

I do not know the title of this song, can’t remember it, but it was more in the secular  vein, not religious.  I do know  a few of the opening lines:

     I see Christmas candles on our Christmas tree,
     And they light a lovely Yuletide reverie,
     In the candlelight so dim, we will sing a Christmas hymn……

 These were more like the lead-in lyrics, but the tune was fairly familiar….

On December 4, 2010, I got an email from Winsor that added these three additional lines:

As the church bells played a holy melody.
At the dinner table everyone in Place as i see us bow our heads as dad said grace
There the sweet things I remember as each year in December I see Christmas Candles on a Christmas Tree

Thanks, Winsor!

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Received from Fred, December 9, 2005:

When I was a boy, around 13 - in 1954 - we had a small 10" 33 rpm LP record of a group of Christmas carols written/composed by a soldier in WW II who sent them home each Christmas while he was overseas.
  My family has lost track of this record, and I, having come across your web site, I decided to ask you about my quandary.  I can't remember anything such as names or titles...

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Received from Connie, November 26, 2005:

I have the sheet music to "In Old Judea" by Geibel and Buck what I really would like is a recording of the song (hymn). [The sheet music is from] Our Lady Of Angels Catholic Church in Albany, New York, a German church run by Franciscans. It recently closed; started 1847?

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Received from Derek, December 5, 2005:

I am trying to identify a carol that I heard sung once before that includes the following two lines
        For nothing we brought to this world
        And nothing we'll take out.
I think it is an old English carol.  Do you have any idea what it might be, and if you do, where I might find the rest of the words

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Received from Emily, December 4, 2005:

There is a song that is Mary singing to / about the baby Jesus - not "Mary  Did You Know" - it's actually like the voice of Mary, telling her story...please help!

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Received from Schumann, October 31, 2005:

        I searching for a Carol/Hymn that I sang in a Lutheran Church Youth Choir in the late 50's.
        Here are the title and words that I remember:
                CHRISTMAS RADIANCE -?
                        I feel the radiant glow of God,
                                that hovered over staff and rod,
                        the precious Truth which we believe
                                our humble contrite hearts receive.  ??
        This was probably published by Augsburg Publishing.
                Also vague in my memory on the cover of the collection was the name Ringwald??
        It was sung, I think, to the same tune as "I heard the bells on Christmas Day" by Calkin. 

The carol was not in a collection of Christmas Carols.  It was in a collection of anthems that we used year round for Sunday morning services.  The cover of the collection was magenta colored, I think.  And perhaps there were 20 to 30 anthems in the paper covered collection.  As I said this was a youth choir so I believe the level of difficulty would not have been as hard as adult choir anthems. 

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Received from Audrey, November 4, 2005:

I recall singing this with my school choir when I
was very young and I have not heard of it since. 
Unfortunately I can only remember the first verse:

Long long ago, there came a star
From Bethlehem afar,
Guiding men of old with their gifts of gold,
To a lonely stable through the dark and cold.

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Received under the title "Unknown Welsh carol", December 17, 2004:

I have been trying for years to find a carol that I heard in the holiday
movie "A Child's Christmas in Wales".  It's in the scene where the young
boy is carrying a candle going upstairs to bed and saying goodnight to
all the adults in the room. .  I finally got a cd with what I think might
be it but the words are not the ones in the movie.  On the cd it's called
"What's New?" and is sung in French but the info says that it's a
traditional Welsh song.  In the movie the lyrics went something like
this.....

Down in Bethlehem town
- - - - - - - -
- - - - - - at the cradle,
Come, Come to the cradle,
Come all who are able - - - - -
and something about the wise men bringing frankincense and myrrh.

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Received from Kathy, November 5, 2004:

I am looking for a song not real sure about the name but it is something like Who Will Come to the Manger on Christmas Morning.  My mother is one who would like this song and this is all she can remember about.  If you know about this song please let me know where I can get a copy of the words or download the song.

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Received December 14, 2004:

I am looking for a piece of music that i sang once as part of a high school choir back in the 70's yes I am very old....   did not pay attention to name of piece  however It was a cantada...and then I heard it on the radio 15 years later but never caught the name of the piece
 
Some of the lyrics are     a maiden sits alone weaving her thoughts of white a frill of an angel.....you are so favored Mary the maiden blessed are you among women....the angel passed...a maiden sits along weaving her thoughts of white....
 
then in another stanza....Peace has come to a troubled Land....and the world rejoices...something like that....
 
can you please help me

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Received from Cannon, December 10, 2004:

The songs are

1.  Jesu, son most sweet and dear
2.  Carol from an Irish Cabin  (the cold wind blows over the heather,
the salt wind blows over the sea, the harsh wind blows over the
mountains, and brings a white Christmas to me......)

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Received from Minnie..., September 3, 2004:

I am searching for words and music for a song I soloed with more than 30 years ago.  It was titled Song of Mary, and some of the lyrics went as follows: 

Lo, Ye who hover, under the palm trees. Angels, above, see how He slumbers, He slumbers so sweetly, He slumbers so sweetly, my child.

I cannot remember more than that, and want to re-learn it.  Can you help?

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Received from Coral, July 26, 2004:

Just after Christmas last year I attended a carol concert in Higher Oddcombe church which I think was organised by Folk West. All the carols
sung that night had been specifically written for west country villages or areas, they were traditional as opposed to modern. Do you know if any such carols have ever been written for Suffolk?

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Received from Dick, June 25, 2004:

Do you know of a carol which includes the following words?
 
Good Saint Joseph, Fur robbed muzhiks, And the rabit cowers and the squirrel is cold, When the hoar frost falls on the wood, To Night.
 
We sang such a carol in the 1940s as undergraduates and would like to include it in our local Choral Society's Christmas concert this December.

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The Hymns and Carols of Christmas
Douglas D. Anderson

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