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February 11, 2013.
The current research revolves around a body of carols that center on hunting the wild boar, and the feasts that follow. Several new pages have been added, and several others will be rewritten to reflect new discoveries and sources. The best starting point is probably Notes On The Boar's Head Carols. Expect to see new additions and changes to the web site over the next few weeks.
January 6, 2013, The Feast of the Epiphany.
Within the last few days, I've begun to incorporate new-to-me carols from one of the primary sources of English carols, A Good Christmas Box, originally published by C. Walters in 1847; this extremely rare volume was reprinted in 2007 by Michael Raven. With these incorporations, this web site now has over 3,500 hymns, carols, ballads, and other songs of Christmas. This is an especially fitting way to conclude the 12 days of Christmas this year!
Another new-to-me volume is from antiquarian Thomas Wright, Songs and Carols from a Manuscript in the British Museum of the Fifteenth Century (The Warton Club, 1856). It is a companion to his earlier volume prepared for the Percy Society, Songs and Carols Now First Printed From a Manuscript of the Fifteenth Century (1847). Together, these two volumes open a remarkable window into the Christmas songs sung in the 1400s in England.
November 27, 2012.
In addition to a number of additions to Christmas Carols Now Annually Printed (William Hone, 1823), two additional collections have been added:
Some of the earliest carols in Greene's collection occur in Old English and Middle English, which are nearly foreign languages to the modern ear; they have not been added, as there is already a substantial collection of such carols (including versions with modern spelling).
October 9, 2012. The incorporation of additional translations of some of our oldest Christmas hymns and carols, those written in Latin, continues on the site. The most recent addition was the translations included in the volume by Orby Shipley, Annus Sanctus: Hymns of the Church for the Ecclesiastical Year (1884). About 60 new translations were added, and a number of other translations were updated. With all these new hymns and carols, the site now has over 3,300 Christmas hymns and carols. Here is the Table of Contents for Mr. Shipley's invaluable volume. See all the Latin hymns and carols at Latin Hymns from the Early Church.
July 25, 2012. Changing tastes mean that some Christmas carols and hymns that are written today will be forgotten "tomorrow." Indeed, of the over 3,100 Christmas songs on this web site, most have slipped into obscurity. There is a body of hymns, however, that have survived for up to 17 centuries: the Latin hymns that we still sing today in our churches and choirs (including the Daily Office recited by Catholics, Anglicans, Lutherans and some other Christians). Over the last couple of weeks, I've been incorporating additional Latin hymns and some English translations, and there are many more that are "in the works." To see three collections of translations that have been recently added, please see Latin Hymns from the Early Church.
The three collections are:
July 17, 2012. When I completed added the Christmas-tide Hymns of Charles Wesley this morning, I decided to check on the number of hymns and carols on the site. To my surprise, the Hymns and Carols of Christmas now has over 3,100 English-language Christmas hymns and carols, plus over 200 carols in other languages (French, German, Latin, Greek, etc) and over 600 Christmas poems and short stories.
July 9, 2012. Today marks the beginning of incorporation of a large body of Christmas-tide hymns written by the Rev. Charles Wesley (18 December 1707 – 29 March 1788), one of the co-founders of the Methodist movement in the Church of England. His output was prodigious -- estimated by various authorities at between 5,000 and 8,000 hymns, the last of which was dictated to his wife from his death bed. The hymns that I've found come primarily from four publications, including hymns celebrating Christmas, New Year's Day, selections from the Gospel of Matthew, and selections from the Gospel of Luke. See: Christmas-tide Hymns of Charles Wesley. The incorporation was concluded on July 17th. A total of 62 hymns were added.
June, 2012. A new collection has been added that was released the same year as the influential book by William Sandys, Christmas Carols Ancient and Modern, that was said to have help launched the resurgence of carol singing in England. Published anonymously by the SPCK, Christmas Carols, or Sacred Songs, Suited to the Festival of our Lord's Nativity, (London: John William Parker, 1833), this collection featured carols that were written to celebrate the birth of the Savior exclusively, that is Christmas as Holy Day, and specifically to exclude any celebrations of Christmas as holiday. Only a few of these carols came into popular usage, but all would be good choices for Advent preparation and Christmas celebrations by the Christian seeking a source of religious thought.
May 16, 2012. I saw a title a month or so ago that intrigued me: The Book of Christmas Hymns (1868). Previously, all the collections that have been incorporated included, at least, "carol" in the title -- and frequently exclusively so. So a book of Christmas hymns looked interesting ... and it was. It was published in 1868, and so gives us an excellent glimpse into how the middle Victorians viewed Christmas. The Table_of_Contents displays the path and progress of understanding of the Nativity of Christ as it effects the human condition, from the Nativity through the Second Advent and the Day of Judgment. You will probably recognize many of these hymns, but there are also a number of new titles here. Enjoy!
By the way, it's probably a good time to mention how research on this site has evolved in the last 12 years, and my research generally in the last 17 or so years that I've been collecting Christmas hymns and carols. Back in the mid '90s, the Internet was a new phenomena for most of us. When I put up my first web page, there were only about 2,000 in the whole world wide web. My how things have changed.
In particular, we have the generous and far-sighted initiatives that have digitalized books, in one form or another. Project Gutenberg certainly has provided us all with thousands of titles, clearly and neatly typed (perfect? no ... but neither am I). We also have the sponsorship of Microsoft and Google in scanning books and putting them on line.
When I first started doing this, I bought books, including old collections as old as the epic 1833 book by William Sandys and the magnum opus of William Hutchins in 1916. I eagerly searched out old book stores and was a regular visitor to my local library (especially the interlibrary loan desk).
While these researches still produce great finds, the web sites of Google Books and the Internet Archive now provide us with books that were available at only a few libraries in world. Now, they are at my fingertips. I've downloaded over 1,000 PDF scans of these collections.
Increasingly, I'm using old hymnals and carol collections as a starting point for research, and whenever possible, I go to the first publication of the original hymn or carol -- assiduously avoiding the hack jobs imposed by some editors in the name of improvement (usually unsuccessfully). Because of Project Gutenberg, the Internet Archive, and Google Books, we're now able to see many of the original compositions.
This does add a lot of time to the process of incorporations, and I'm looking again at a large number of carols that have already been added -- and correcting the texts as I go along. In addition, I'm able to look at additional Christmas hymns and carols in those old collections, and with additional lists of songs to incorporate.
Great stuff! Thanks to those who have funded these projects, managed the projects, and scanned or typed the texts for us. A job well done, and one that continues to add new titles daily.
January 13, 2012. For some time, I've been unhappy with how some browsers render the pages on this website, especially pages such as this one with a top and side border. Also, some folks did not understand that most of the links on these pages are unpaid links, as for example, to Project Gutenberg, and most have been removed. After a bit of experimenting, I've come up with this format, which will show you what I really had in mind. Enjoy.
December 25, 2011. This morning's addition is a true story from one of our visitors. He placed the story in the public domain for all to enjoy (and I did). I'd like to invite you to read A Christmas Story - by Jay Frankston.
November 1, 2011. This additional body of work is among the oldest that I've had the pleasure of discovering, and it is unique in that it is still performed annually in the small village of Kilmore, County Wexford, in southwest Ireland, over 300 years after the first of these carols were composed.
Christmas Carols of Waddinge and Devereux
August 2, 2010
June 13, 2009. Work is largely complete on a web page concerning the significant collection, Carols for Christmas-tide, the work of Rev. John Mason Neale and Rev. Thomas Helmore that was published in London by Novello in 1853. This work contained two new carols from Neale, plus translations of 10 others from the Swedish collection, Piae Cantiones, first published in 1582. Music was provided by Rev. Helmore, based on tunes found in Piae Cantiones, which was virtually unknown in England at that time.
June 9, 2009. I recently came across a terrific trove of Christmas-tide translations by Rev. John Brownlie that he termed “Hymns from the Office Books of The Holy Eastern Church.” These translations from the Eastern churches were contained in a series of five books issued from 1900 through 1913. A total of 34 (new-to-me) Christmas-tide translations are linked from the Christmas Hymns from John Brownlie. I hope that you enjoy them as much as I have.
March 12, 2009. A few months ago, after stumbling across another translation that I had been unaware of, I decided to clean up my collection of ”Stille Nacht” / “Silent Night” translations. In the course of that work, I consulted John Julian's “Dictionary of Hymnology” concerning Joseph Mohr and “Stille Nacht” and discovered a list of translations (up to 1907; he listed eight in Common Use and an additional three not in CU). Since then, I've been looking for those translations, and yesterday concluded that research with the discovery of the full texts of the Emily E. S. Elliott translation Stilly Night, Holy Night of 1858 and the W. T. Matson translation Silent Night! Holy Night! of 1887. The Elliott translation was the earliest translation made in England that I have discovered so far.
Also now on the site is a translation by J. F. Warner in 1849, Silent Night! Hallowed Night!, which is believed to be the oldest translation of "Stille Nacht" in the English language. It was published by Charles Dingley, ed., The Devotional Harmonist (New York: George Lane and Levi Scott, 1851), p. 373.
April 3, 2008. Together with many others, I'm mourning the passing of Wally Bronner, founder of the Bronner's Christmas Wonderland in Frankenmuth, MN, and a generous benefactor to many charities and causes. He passed away on Tuesday, April 1, 2008. Bronner on March 24 announced in a letter that "the Christ of Christmas is ready to receive me into His heavenly kingdom."
He and his wife, Irene, who survives him, constructed the Silent Night Memorial Chapel on Bronner's premises in 1992. The chapel is a replica of the chapel in Oberndorf, Austria, built on the site where church-goers first sang Silent Night on Christmas Eve in 1818.
An obituary can be found at http://www.mlive.com/news/index.ssf/2008/04/bronner_dies.html
A biography, with additional links, can be found at http://blog.mlive.com/saginawnews/2008/04/a_look_at_wally_bronners_life.html
We wish to extend our condolences to the family of this generous man of faith.
March 19, 2008. A few days ago I received in the mail a reprint of the Davies Gilbert 1822 edition of "Some Ancient Christmas Carols." It was reprinted as an Elibron Classics by Adamant Media, Boston, 2002 (http://www.elibron.com/english/ ; ISBN: 1421262363). This edition has been especially difficult to see; I've been looking for a copy for about eight years.
I've compared the seven carols in his collection with the versions on the website, and made a few minor updates (mostly capitalization and punctuation). I've also added a few notes to the biography of Davies Gilbert. I've got just a bit more to do on the bio (cleaning up the page's bibliography, for example), but I've uploaded what I've got so far. Enjoy!
March 13, 2008. I came across a "new to me" translation of "Stille Nacht!" today. It's "Silent Night, Sacred Night." I found it in the 1912 Crown Hymnal. There was no attribution. I subsequently found another copy of the words in Frank Langdon Humphreys' Christmas Carols (New York: Novello Ewer &Y Co,1900). There was no attribution or music.
February 23, 2008. The folks at Google have given us the ability to "write" little gadgets. Here's one that web site creators can incorporate if they'd like to give their visitors the ability to search for Christmas Carols, Hymns and Poetry.
December 21, 2007. The new home of The Hymns and Carols of Christmas is now Huntsville, Alabama, as the move from to Oregon to Alabama is finally complete. We're still living out of boxes (we're in a rental until we can purchase a new home), but grateful not to be sleeping in a different motel each night during the seven-day drive across the country.
In the middle of the move, literally, my former web hosting company deleted this web site, without notice. Although I attempted to resolve the problem, their lack of communication kept the site dark for the first two and a half weeks of December ... without a doubt, the worst possible time for a site such as this. I was — to put it mildly — unhappy, but the site is back up and running, which is the important part.
I'm pleased to report that the new web hosting company seems to be working out fine.
September 19, 2007. I occasionally received emails from visitors who are looking for an old hymn or carol. If I can find it for them, I reply directly. Sometimes, however, I'm stumped. So, I've set up this page to solicit you help. I'll be posting a portion of those requests on this page. If you can help, please let me know (there's an email link at the top of the page). I'll forward your reply to the requesting visitor. If the song is in the public domain, I will also create a page for it.
September 17, 2007. I'm testing out a Guest Book. The test page for this is Guest Book Page. The purpose of the Guest Book is to see your comments about this site, including any additions you'd like to see, corrections that need to be made, and other observations.
I've been thinking about starting a monthly newsletter, but I'm still doing the research. If you have any thoughts about this, please leave them in the Guest Book. One concern is ensuring that people don't get spammed by this. I've seen some other sites that have an automated means of verification.
The Christmas poetry books are still consuming a lot of my time (there are currently 12). I hope to have the Advent Poetry book published by the end of this month — in time for people to have an additional Advent planning resource. After that, I plan to take a break from editing. I'll go through each of these books to ensure that any new poems that I've found will be incorporated into the main site. The books can be previewed at Douglas Anderson's Christmas Storefront. There's also a link to the book I edited about my dad's World War II career.
August 27, 2007. Still busy with the Christmas poetry project (some of the best hymns and carols were poems first, with the music added later). A large addition of material is expected to be incorporated this fall.
May 17, 2007. A quiet time for the last few months. Additions have been made, but not sufficient of requiring a comment. In large measure, this time has been spent doing research and gathering new materials. As a result, this weekend more than 40 new poems and 40 new prose works have been added to the site. See: Christmas Poetry And Prose.
In addition, I've published seven books of Christmas poetry compilations, with another four on the near horizon. These can be seen at Douglas Anderson's Christmas Storefront at Lulu.com.
February 16, 2007. Incorporation of Catherine Winkworth's The Chorale Book For England, Congregational Edition, is complete. This edition omits the preface, introduction, etc. In addition, it prints only the melody line, as opposed to a full SATB arrangement. A full edition has been requested on inter-library loan. Additional material will be added. Please check back. See: Christmas Poetry of Catherine Winkworth.
I've just received, and will begin incorporation, of A. B. Goodrich's A New Service And Tune Book For Sunday Schools (New York: Gen. Prot. Episc. S. S. Union and Church Book Society, 1863, New Edition, Enlarged, 1866). See: Silent Night, Holy Night.
February 7, 2007. Added are some of the Christmas poems of Emily Elizabeth Steele Elliott: Christmas-tide Poetry by Emily Elizabeth Steele Elliott. All of these poems are from Chimes of Consecration. Ms. Elliott is also the author of Chimes for Daily Service, (1880). It contained 71 hymns, arranged in two parts, the second of which was published separately as a cheap large-print book for hospitals, etc, with the title Under the Pillow. I am attempting to locate a copy.
Ms. Elliott is also the purported author of one of the earliest translations of Stille Nacht! Heilige Nacht! that was titled "Stilly Night! Holy Night!" So far, I have been unable to locate a copy.
The Christmas Poetry And Prose page has been slightly restructured to put Christmas poetry collections such as Ms. Elliott's (and including Winkworth, Rossetti, etc.) in a grouped location.
Some additional material has been added to The Moon Shines Bright - Notes. I've got another approximately one hour of work to do on this, but there is much new material already.
Additional material has also been added to Carol Services.
January 12, 2007. There's some new research notes to two of the most popular Christmas hymns: O Holy Night (and including its parent, Cantique de Noël) and Silent Night, Holy Night - Young Translation. Check 'em out! And check back again soon, as additional research is being conducted on both of these favorites.
January 10, 2007. Recently added collections:
December 8, 2006. I am not able to provide direct support other formats of music notation software, such as Finale® or Scorch®. However, all Noteworthy Composer files have been converted to the MusicXML format: XML.iso (88,294 KB, using James Lee's nwc2xml program; as of December 6, 2006). I am told that Finale 7, Scorch 4, and other programs support this format. The ISO file was successfully tested on my computer (using Roxio™). My thanks to Wheat Williams for his invaluable assistance in this project.
See: MusicXML for updates.
September 24, 2006. A Very Bad Person "spoofed" this website's URL again and sent out several thousand more "spam" messages. Again, this site does not send unsolicited email under any circumstances. See below.
July 26, 2006. A Very Bad Person "spoofed" this website's URL and sent out several thousand "spam" messages on July 25, 2006.
I did not send out these messages, and I assure you that, if I could, I would take the strongest possible action against this person.
Unfortunately, to the best of my knowledge, I am unable either to locate the perpetrator or to prevent further messages from being sent.
To those to have been inconvenienced, all that I can say is "sorry."
March 12, 2006. Work continues on incorporation of carols. All histories have been removed. All are several years old, and need updated research and a complete re-write. They will return as time and health allows.
January 1, 2006. And a Happy New Year.
December 25, 2005. Merry Christmas.
November 21, 2005. I took a brief break from the Cambridge Carol-Book to include additional content from William Hone's The Year Book and Ancient Mysteries Described. See: The Every Day Book.
November 18, 2005. Two new (to me) collections from the pen of the Rev. George R. Woodward: The Babe Of Bethlehem and The Cambridge Carol-Book. Incorporation of the former is complete; incorporation of the latter is on-going.
October 21, 2005. Incorporation is complete of carols from two collections by Lucy Broadwood:
I've also completed incorporating Christmas-related information from William Hone, The Every Day Book. Two Vols. London: William Tegg, 1825, 1827. Work on the Pickard-Cambridge collection is continuing. Just received is J. A. (John Alexander) Fuller Maitland and W. S. (William Smyth) Rockstro , English Carols of the Fifteenth Century. London: Leadenhall Press, ca. 1891.
September 29, 2005. Incorporation of Bullen is complete (no music; just text -- much had already been incorporated via the Rickert collection). I've begun a review of the Hutchins' collection, with a view of adding additional music (SATB). I've also just received W. A. Pickard-Cambridge's "A Collection of Dorset Carols" (1926), which contains many new carols. This is a work in progress. Your patience is appreciated.
August 22, 2005. Just arrived today is A. H. Bullen's A Christmas Garland: Carols And Poems (London: John C. Nimmo, 1885). Incorporation has begun. Text only; no music.
August 18, 2005. Incorporation of Cecil J. Sharp, English Folk-Carols (London: Novello & Co., 1911) is complete. Only 21 carols, but most were new versions, with music.
August 8, 2005. Incorporation of William Sandys, Sandys - Christmas-tide - Its History, Festivities and Carols, With Their Music (London: John Russell Smith, 1852) is complete. The site now has 2,330 hymns and carols. Sandys published eleven chapters on the history of Christmas as viewed from 1852.
July 24, 2005. Incorporation of Edith Rickert, Ancient English Christmas Carols: 1400-1700 (London: Chatto & Windus, 1910, reprinted 1914) is complete. The site now has 2,322 Christmas hymns and carols.
June 28, 2005. Incorporation continues from Edith Rickert, Ancient English Christmas Carols: 1400-1700 (London: Chatto & Windus, 1910, reprinted 1914).
Due to bandwidth requirements, I will be switching web hosting companies in the next few days. There may be a brief interruption of service during the switch-over.
My former host, iPowerWeb, has given great service; however, PowWeb will provide me with the bandwidth that I will need next November and December (300 GB per month at 10 GB per day!). I will be creating an affiliate relationship with PowWeb in the future. Please check back.
April 15, 2005. Incorporation of Christmas material from George Ratcliffe Woodward's Songs of Syon is complete. Inclusion of Christmas material from Woodward's An Italian Carol Book (with George Wood) is complete.
There over 2,176 hymns, carols and other Christmas songs on the site.
January 26, 2005. Incorporation of Thomas Wright's Songs and Carols (1847) is complete.
December 31, 2004. All of the music from Chope's Carols for Use In Church has been incorporated. A few more milestones:
Current collections being incorporated are by Thomas Wright:
November 30, 2004. As of today, the contents of the English Carol Book, both the First Series and Second Series, have been incorporated. Several more books were received in the last couple of weeks, so you can expect to see more carols added soon. Before I get into the next series, I'll be going back through the Chope (Carols for Use In Church, 1894) collection to make sure that all of that music has been incorporated. As of yesterday afternoon, the site has 1,991 hymns, carols and other Christmas songs.
A few milestones:
Thank-you for your support.
September 29, 2004. Just a note to assure everyone that the JPEG images on this site are scanned prior to uploading to the web hosting company (over which I have no control). I've set my antivirus program to scan my system each evening, and I've got two firewalls protecting the connection to the internet.
I urge anyone who might be at risk of this Trojan Horse (e.g., Windows XP, Windows XP SP1, and Windows Server 2003) to immediately apply the appropriate patches from Microsoft. Check it out at:
September 24, 2004. The site has received over 10 million hits. Thanks! Still working on the music from the Chope edition.
September 16, 2004. The lyrics of all the carols contained in the Chope edition have been incorporated. Work will begin on sequencing of MIDI files, creation of Noteworthy Composer scores, and PDF copies of those score. It's a pretty big stack; I expect this to take quite some time.
September 6, 2004. The Sylvestre and Husk collections have been fully incorporated. Work begins on Rev. Richard R. Chope, Carols for Use in Church (London: William Clowes & Sons, Complete Edition, 1894).
August 30, 2004. Received in the last few days:
There's many treasures here to be incorporated at a later date. More books in the mail and coming soon. Work on the Sylvestre and Husk collections continues.
August 29, 2004. For those interested in English Broadsides, I'd suggest that you visit the Bodleian Library Broadside Ballads website.
August 23, 2004. I received today reprinted copies of " Joshua Sylvestre," Christmas Carols Ancient and Modern (1861) and William Henry Husk, Carols of the Nativity (1868). Excellent notes, which I will start incorporating.
August 14, 2004. Those who are beginning to create Advent programs for the coming holiday season might want to check out these two resources:
August 8, 2004. All the music from The Cowley Carol Book, both series, has been sequenced.
I've created index links to 81 Advent, Christmas, Christingle and Toy Service carols which can be found at the website of Stainer & Bell Ltd., London (hosting hymns.uk.com). Here's the list: Stainer & Bell Carols
The carol indices have been reworked; hopefully they are easier to navigate.
July 18, 2004. After over 15 months, I've finally "completed" the incorporation of Charles L. Hutchins, Carols Old And Carols New (Boston: Parish Choir, 1916). A large body of the sheet music from that volume has been sequenced into MIDI files, converted to Noteworthy Composer scores, and printed as Adobe© PDF files. I will need to go back to the first portion of the incorporation to sequence those files as well. That will come later.
Right now, I'm starting to sequence the music from the Cowley Book of Carols, First Series, edited by Rev. George Ratcliffe Woodward. There's lots of good stuff there, only a portion of which has been reproduced by other collectors. As was the case with the Hutchins' carols, I'll sequence a MIDI file of the melody, convert to a Noteworthy Composer score, and print as an Adobe© PDF.
May 26, 2004. Problems with spamming the main email account on this site require that I change the default email address; it's been hijacked and I'm getting more email (about topics not appropriate to mention in this note) than I can count on a daily basis. Within a day or so, no mail addressed to w e b m a s t e r at this site will be read. To get in contact with me, there is a new account.
April 28, 2004. Due to work-related training, there will be no published updates to this site from May 1 through May 22, 2004. The problem with email seems to have been resolved.
April 23, 2004. There is a continuing problem with email communications. I'm working with the web hosting provider to resolve the problem. Please check back again.
March 28, 2004. The "W" carols have been typed and incorporated. This completes the incorporation of the text of the Christmas carols from Rev. Charles L. Hutchins, Carols Old And Carols New (Boston: Parish Choir, 1916); the incorporation process began 10 months ago. The site now contains 1,730 hymns and carols.
Next is to sequence the MIDI files and create the Noteworthy Composer and PDF scores for the "S," "T", and "W" carols from Hutchins, as well as from the Cowley Book of Carols, First Series.
March 27, 2004. The rest of the "T" carols and all of the "W" carols have been scanned. All of the "S" and "T" carols have been retyped and incorporated into the site. The "W" carols will be typed and incorporated next.
In the meantime, I've published a page that I've titled Christmastide Poems of Christina Rossetti. It consists of poems written about topics within the Christmastide, as found (mostly) in The Poetic Works of Christina Georgina Rossetti, edited with a preface and memoir by her brother, William (1904). Composers that are looking for some very musical lyrics might consider looking at these poems.
Finally, I've recently received several new (to me) books:
I've also received two biographies of Bishop John Freeman Young, one of which has been reviewed and some notes added; the other has yet to be reviewed. In addition, I've received another book: Silent Night, Holy Night: History and Circulation of a Carol, Alois Schmaus and Lenz Kriss-Rettenbeck, eds., (Innsbruck: University Press,1968), which contains, inter alia, a short history of the carol by J. Gassner. More updates to this site will come from these sources soon.
March 8, 2004. The "S" and the first half of the "T" carols have been scanned. At this point, I'll complete the scanning of all carols before typing the lyrics and creating MIDI / NWC / and PDF files. The volume that I am scanning from is deteriorating very quickly; this is especially problematic since this is only one of 1000 copies ever printed - in 1916! Fortunately, my friend Max Marbles, Bookbinder, has done some great work for me in the past (including my 52 year old baptismal Bible that I got back just two weeks ago), and I know that he can save this book too.
February 29, 2004. The "R" carols incorporated, plus the remaining "U", "V", and "Y" carols (one each). The MIDI and Noteworthy Composer (NWC) files created, together with a PDF of the NWC files. After all the carols from this collection have been incorporated, I'll go back and create PDF files of the existing NWC scores.
February 12, 2004. The "O" carols incorporated; now to the task of sequencing the MIDI files and creating the Noteworthy Composer files.
January 7, 2004. Over 2 million hits in the month of December, 2003, and over 7 million hits in the sixteen months since the site opened. The sequencing of MIDI files and Noteworthy Composer scores for the Hutchins "LMN" files complete. Scanning of the "O" carols complete; incorporation will begin shortly. I'm spending the day fixing broken links -- and it will take *all* day ;)
December 14, 2003. Incorporation of the Hutchins "LMN" carols complete.
November 19, 2003. Incorporation of the Hutchins "I" and "J" carols is complete. On November 10, I was able to borrow a copy of the Rev. Richard R. Chope's Carols For Use In Church (London, William Clowes & Sons, circa 1894). This "complete edition" contains 215 carols, of which 152 relate to Christmas, Epiphany, etc. I spent the week scanning and formatting these carols. Incorporation of the 97 news carols found in this volume will begin after I complete the full Hutchins incorporation. However, I will begin linking the sheet music immediately.
Yesterday, I received a copy of Edith Rickert's Ancient English Christmas Carols (London: Chatto & Windus, 1914). There seems to be quite a large content in this book, which will be incorporated at a later time. Regrettably, it is words only; no sheet music.
November 7, 2003. I'm modifying the design to speed up the loading of pages, including removing graphics. The menu bar is being moved from the top to the left side of the page; content is being distinguished from affiliate programs. Finally, a search box is being added at the top.
Because of the large number of changes, please hit the "refresh" or "reload' buttons in your browser.
Incorporation of Bramley & Stainer, Series Three, is complete. The incorporation of Hutchins "I" & "J" carols will be continued starting tomorrow (lots of typing, plus MIDI and Noteworthy Composer files).
I noticed that many of the Series One and Two carols from Bramley and Stainer do not have MIDI or Noteworthy Composer files. I'll take that up after the incorporation of Hutchins "I" & "J" carols.
November 1, 2003. Incorporation of Bramley and Stainer, Series Three, has begun. The Hutchins "I" & "J" carols are on hold until the Bramley & Stainer series has been added.
October 26, 2003. I *think* that the site is stable now. Please let me know if you find any broken links (I'm expecting a deluge ;). Addition of the "I" and "J" carols will commence this week, subject to cataract surgery this Thursday. The expected upturn of hits continues...on the order of 16,000+ hits a day and climbing.
October 20, 2003. The site is hosed. The host moved the site last Friday, presumably to balance the load. I've republished -- completely -- on Sunday and Monday (and Tuesday, the 21st). I'll continue to work with the host to get things re-established. Sorry if I missed you (I'm guessing that I'm losing 10,000+ hits a day!). Please check back.
October 19, 2003. The "G" and "H" carols have been incorporated. Problems with the site, which are being worked as fast as I can. Please check back if you're having problems accessing the sites. Remember to click the "refresh" or "reload" button.
September 28, 2003. The "D," "E," and "F" carols have been incorporated. Updated notes for Adeste Fideles (from Dom John Stéphan's The "Adeste Fideles": A Study On Its Origin & Development, 1947)
September 2, 2003. I've completed the "A," "B," and "C" carols from Hutchins. Moving on to the "D" carols. The site got its 4 millionth hit today, 6 days short of a year since the full collection (at that time) was completed. Since then, an additional 250+ carols and hymns have been added.
May 25, 2003. My web hosting company, iPowerWeb, has graciously agreed to expand the size of the site from 200 MB to 500 MB. This will allow earlier posting of scanned copies of scores from Hutchins, as well as the MIDI and Noteworthy Composer files.
May 24, 2003. I'm still plugging along. I've started to incorporate the contents of Charles L. Hutchins' Carols Old and Carols New (Boston: Parish Choir, 1916). The very large volume will take some time to fully incorporate. I'll be including scanned copies of the scores, as well as MIDI and Noteworthy Composer scores, as time and web hosting space allow. The site is approaching 3.5 million hits.
Howard C. Rigby, Jr. is publishing a very complete collection of public domain texts titled Christian Hymn Texts From The Public Domain. This collection is available June 1, 2003 at Handlo Music. I was privileged to see an advance copy of this carefully researched work. Cecil can be reached at Harrock Hall Music, Liberty, South Carolina.
On July 1, 2003, Mr. Rigby also announced a new service of Harrock Hall Music which will allow an excellent way for composers to publish new compositions and arrangements of sacred choir and instrumental music, while allowing those composers and arrangers to pursue additional publishing options. Get more information at Harrock Hall Music.
February 21, 2003. Please remember the Rev. Vincent Uher in your thoughts and prayers. He is the author of numerous hymns, and is facing serious medical problems at this time. I have not received permission to reprint any of his Advent, Christmas or Epiphany hymns, but several of his hymns can be found at Oremus.
January 30, 2002. Additional Scandinavian carols acquired and incorporated. Three calendars of carols were created for the Christmastide. Footnotes to the History of Hymns and Carols have also been incorporated.
December 31, 2002. The site received over 2.5 million hits during the year 2002. My best wishes to you all for a joyous New Year.
A few statistics:
December 25, 2002. Thank-you and Merry Christmas. As of today, the site has received more than 1.4 million hits this month.
December 18, 2002. Today was a red-letter day for this site. The site received over one million hits this month. And today, the site has now received more than 2 million hits overall. Quite a day! The site is averaging over 57,000 hits per day for this month (almost 40 hits per second!). So far, the record day for the month was Dec. 16, when the site received 80,337 hits. My thanks to you all. Merry Christmas!
December 15, 2002. Thanks to the help of two kind souls, I've added several more translations of carols from Norway and Denmark.
November 30, 2002. Last day of the month, and the site received its one millionth hit today, including over 960,000 hits this month! It was first listed in the Google search engine the week of August 23, just over three months ago. I am amazed.
November 18, 2002. Still cleaning up copyright dates and broken links. There are now a total of 1,675 carols in the main collection, and 1,285 English-language carols on the site, plus 81 non-English carols (Latin, German, Scandinavian, etc). As of the 16th, the site is averaging over 13,600 hits per day.
November 9, 2002. Still adding carols, a few at a time. About 20 were added in the last week. This weekend's big project is to nail down copyright dates, now that I see these are available from the U.S. Government's Copyright Office. In the first eight days of November, the site is averaging over 10,600 hits per day! Thanks to you all!
A few statistics:
October 30, 2002. 32 Middle English carols have been added. To correctly see these carols, you will need to have both "Junius Modern" and "Old Blackletter" fonts installed on your computer. See Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) for more details. The site averaged 977 hits per day during this month, with over 30,000 for the month.
October 26, 2002. A dozen or so carols from Appalachia were added last week. Work continues on 32 Middle English hymns and carols.
October 11, 2002. The contents of William Sandys, Christmas Carols Ancient and Modern, have been fully incorporated, including the 6 French carols and tunes (the 100+ page introduction has not yet been incorporated). A two additional carols have been included from Heart Songs (1909), plus variations on four other carols previous acquired.
October 2, 2002. I've started to incorporate the contents of William Sandys, Christmas Carols Ancient and Modern (1833). Check the Table of Contents to follow the progress. The text will include any of Sandys' notes and the sheet music printed by Sandys. Some of the earliest carols will require installation of a special font, "Junius Modern," to be viewed properly. For more details, see the FAQ (link above). The site averaged 619 hits a day in September.
September 31, 2002. The site has received over 5,000 hits.
September 23, 2002. The new site exists at the web provider, and the site will up loaded this evening. Sorry if I missed you. Please update your Bookmarks or Favorites page to reflect the new site: http://www.hymnsandcarolsofchristmas.com
September 21, 2002. I'll be moving the website to a new web provider in a few days. The URL ( http://www.hymnsandcarolsofchristmas.com ) will remain the same, but links at search engines might still point to pages at my wife's site, http://www.victoriasuzanne.biz which I will maintain as a "mirror" until December. I'll be taking steps to correct this problem. In the meantime, Google offers a "cached" version of many pages. I'll put an "automatic forwarder" at the old web provider's site in early November.
September 13, 2002. There has been a problem the last week with missing hyperlinks. Hopefully, the problem has been repaired.
September 8, 2002. The full collection has been published, 8 months and 3 days from the beginning of publication (January 5, 2002). A few statistics:
There is still much to do. There are footnotes to add (especially to the History of the Christmas Carol). There are lots of links to check. There are two full file cabinet drawers of notes, including printed collections to incorporate. And, I've acquired four significant volumes of carols since beginning the incorporation:
I've also acquired other additional hymnals and carol collections -- total is about 60. I'll be going back through all collections to capture any omissions (and rescan otherwise unavailable music).
Please check back regularly and feel free to offer suggestions on how to improve the site!
September 4, 2002. The "U" and "V" carols are complete. We are now at 90% completion of the original collection.
September 3, 2002. The "T" carols are complete; 89% of the maid body of the collection has now been published.
August 31, 2002. I think that the search engine issues are finalized; I'll know tomorrow when I check the site. In the meantime, the "S" carols are completed.
August 23, 2002. The site appears for the first time in the Google search engine.
August 15, 2002. Corrected a naming problem with the indices. Hopefully, the will now correctly link to the hymns and carols.
August 12, 2002. Not much for the last two weeks, as I have been out of town of business. The "R" carols have been completed; this represents 74% (1097) of the original collection of 1481. The total number of hymns and carols included is 891, which represents 81% of the hymns and carols possible. The 19% which have not been published are either under copyright or considered inappropriate for publication. For more information, see the FAQ (link above).
August 5, 2002. The site has been "spidered" by webbots from Google.com.
July 22, 2002. I've elected not to use the FrontPage® Search page function. Use of this function requires a web server which has FrontPage 2002® extensions loaded. That would exclude CD ROM users from searching the site. Accordingly, I'm looking for a Java-based application; work is continuing.
July 18, 2002. The "P" carols are complete and I'm working on the "R" carols.
July 15, 2002. The "O" carols are complete. I've added a FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) page. There haven't been any yet, but I'm trying to plan ahead.
July 13, 2002. With the conversion of O Thou Essential Word, I'm now two-thirds through the conversion from Word to HTML. Work continues on the "O" carols
July 6, 2002. Still working on the "O" carols. The in-laws are in town for the international SPEBSQSA convention in Portland, Oregon; I've made significant progress on my "honey-do" list!
June 16, 2002. Completed the "M" and "N" carols.
June 9, 2002. Completed the "L" carols.
June 1, 2002. Not much done this last week. Memorial Day weekend was spent honoring those who died in the defense of our freedom, plus planting flowers and completing several woodworking tasks. Minor surgery was scheduled for May 30; no complications, but the recovery will limit how much work gets done this week.
May 26, 2002. The Table of Contents is still slow to load on a dial-up, but not too bad on a T-1. The problems with the margins have been resolved, although I don't know why (magic?).
I tried to put up a Search Page, but my domain server company doesn't support FrontPage 2000. Perhaps I'll upgrade to FP2002; perhaps I'll change domain providers; it would be cheaper to change providers. Besides, I'm soon to run out of the 100 MB of space that I've purchased with this provider.
We are now over 50%, with the completion of the "J" carols. At this rate, I hope to have the full collection published by the end of September. At this time, the site contains over 2700 files and is 90 MB in size. On to the "K" carols!.
May 18, 2002. There are several matters to report this week. I'm not sure that I'm liking the look of the Table of Contents page, but will continue to work with it to get the margins correct. It does load faster than I originally anticipated. In the meantime, I've purchased a theme from Themes In Design, and I'm very pleased with the new look. I'm also continuing to work with tables to limit the width of text pages to 10 to 12 words per line; this is work in progress. Finally, I've purchased a copy of William Sandys Christmas Carols Ancient and Modern (1833), and will be incorporating portions of his introduction into the History pages of the site; incorporation of most of the carols will be postponed to a later date.
May 9, 2002. I've created a Table of Contents page (generated by Front Page), to allow (relatively) quick access to the full contents of the site. When a hard copy was printed, it was 22 pages long, and therefore may be slow to load unless you have a high speed connection.
May 6, 2002. The "I" carols have been completed and I'm moving quickly through the "J" carols.
April 28, 2002. I've completed the "H" carols, and I'm well into the "I" carols. Also, I've started to reformat pages which contain essentially text in such a manner as to limit the width of the line with a view towards greater readability. I will be retaking the Front Page 2000 Level 1 course on May 1, 2002, and the Level 2 course on May 21-22, 2002.
April 16, 2002. The URL redirection to the new domain name is working fine. Please update your hyperlinks to: www.hymnsandcarolsofchristmas.com The site is still physically located under my wife's domain name; that will remain true until December, 2002. I'm in the processing of updating the header graphics on the hymns and carols themselves, as well as the biographies. In addition, I'm adding a footer navigation bar to the hymns, carols and biographies which allow the viewer to print the page (to your system's default printer), or to quickly close the page.
April 13, 2002. I reserved the domain name www.hymnsandcarolsofchristmas.com (Hymns and Carols of Christmas). I'm still working on the URL redirection, so keep your hyperlinks aimed at my wife's page, www.victoriasuzanne.biz/xmas. I'll post a note when the new URL can be accessed. The site is now about 85 MB in size. I'll almost certainly have to start "affiliations" in order to defray the cost of hosting the domain. Also today was added a "Links" page to sites which contain collections of hymns and carols; I expect that this page will be added to regularly.
April 8, 2002. I'm continuing to add more carols; I'm through the "G" carols and well into the "H" carols. To date, about one-third of the carols have been added. With luck, the collection as it stands will be posted by the end of summer, 2002. After that, about 300 hymns and carols will be added from Rev. Charles Hutchins Carols Old and Carols New. Menu bars were added to the bottom of the pages related to the Hymns and Carols of Christmas. Similar menu bars will be added to the rest of the site -- eventually :)
March 16, 2002. The "D" and "E" carols have been incorporated and I got a running start on the "F" carols. Nine translations by Catherine Winkworth from Lyra Germanica have been added (it's always nice to see what the original translation was, before the editor's got their hands on them). A number of biographies with additional information and correct attribution have been updated.
March 10, 2002. Updated the biography of John Mason Neale and added a few additional carols, including a start on the "D" carols. There is still a lot of work to be done on biographies.
February 24, 2002. A few additional carols or hymns added to the "A-C" carols.
February 16, 2002. I've just finished all of the "A-C" carols. There are a number of issues to pursue in this group, notably dates and authorship. Some updates also made to the Bibliography. This site now resides at www.victoriasuzanne.biz/xmas. Please update any hyperlinks -- and rejoice at the lack of pop-up advertisements!
The automatic forwarding from previous sites has been removed in favor of a notice that this site resides at a previous location. This was done to allow browsers to use the "Back" button (otherwise, you were trapped, which is not good practice). Next: "D" through "J".
January 30, 2002. The plans to publish O Tannenbaum (The Story of the Christmas Tree) have been put on hold (it was due some additional research and I don't want to devote that effort at this time). I'm beginning to convert the Hymns and Carols of Christmas into HTML. All of the public domain "A" and "B" carols have been converted, plus some of the "C" carols.
January 4, 2002. Completed a rewrite of Season's Greetings -- a modest history of the Christmas card. In addition, I added additional links to certain Christmas works by Dickens and Washington Irving (from Project Gutenberg). I also repaired some graphics problems (the thumbnail either pointed to another graphic...or to no graphic at all). All links on this page will open (hopefully) in a new window. To return to these pages, close the new window.
December 30, 2001. Added a biography of Professor William Studwell, together with his Carol of the Year Series.
December 11, 2001: Completed the Advanced Front Page 2000 course. Work may be limited over the next few weeks as I finish up gift projects for the holidays, including a solid walnut clock, a red oak CD holder, and a basswood cribbage board featuring a hand-carved buffalo head. Merry Christmas to you all!
December 9, 2001: Added links to Project Gutenberg copies of A Christmas Carol, The Sketchbook of Geoffrey Crayon, Esq., and the excerpt Old Christmas. A new site was established, www.allthingschristmas.netfirms.com
December 7, 2001: Nothing done this last week, due to a week-long A+ class. More later.
December 1, 2001: Spent a few days cleaning up existing graphics (usually resizing, re-sampling, and reducing to thumbnails) in order to speed up the loading of pages. In addition, headings were standardized, hyperlinks cleaned up (including making all external hyperlinks open -- hopefully -- in a new page), and navigation bars were re-designed.
November 27, 2001: Completed the Intermediate Front Page 2000 course.
November 25, 2001: Completed the first phase in incorporating Hark! The Herald Angels Sing, the history of angels - specifically as they relate to hymns and carols. Additional graphics still need to be uploaded
November 18, 2001: Completed the first phase of incorporating From St. Nicholas to Santa Claus, a history of the development of the jolly old elf. Additional graphics will be uploaded later.
November 11, 2001: Completed incorporating The History of the Hymns and Carols of Christmas. The footnotes will come later. The actual hymns and carols -- over 1400 of them -- will be uploaded at a later date, except for those still under copyright.
November 6, 2001 Completed Beginning Front Page 2001. Started work on the web site, which will include the following:
Collections of Christmas Carols & Poetry
Other Books by Doug Anderson
A Psalter – A Book of the Psalms Arranged by Luther's Categories
Betbüchlein: A Personal Prayer Book, a recreation of Luther's 1529 prayer book
Luther's Writings on Prayer: A Selection
Devotions for the Advent – 2009
The Lenten Sermons of Martin Luther, Second Edition
Descriptions of all these volumes can be seen at
Christmas is a wonderful, cheerful holiday. Whether we spend it by a real tree or some Balsam Hill artificial Christmas trees, at the end of the day what matters is that we enjoy our time together with our loved ones.
The Hymns and Carols of Christmas
© Copyright 1996, All Rights Reserved.
Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam