The Joys of Mary - Notes

This is a carol that is very widespread, very many versions, and, likely, very old.

One of the oldest, preserved among the Sloane MSS., and of a date not later than the fourteenth century, is entitled "Joyes Fyve," which begins:

Ye ferste joye as i zu telle
Wt mary met seynt Gab'elle,
Heyl mary i grete ye welle,
wt fadr & sone & holy gost.

Thomas Wright identifies this version as being found in the Sloane MS., fol. 9, r0. We have several versions that were found in manuscripts, including two manuscripts located by Mr. Wright:

The latter collection is from the Sloane MS., Number 2593, which because of the character of the writing, is believed to date to the reign of Henry VI [1422 to 1461]. This collection, a complete edition of the manuscript, was intended to be a companion volume to the earlier collection prepared for the Percy Society in 1847. Both manuscripts are believed to have been owned by 15th Century Minstrels. Mr. Wright has prepared another, smaller collection in 1836 that contained 20 carols from the Sloan Manuscript,  Songs and Carols Printed From A Manuscript in the Sloane Collection in the British Museum (London: William Pickering).

The very prolific Mr. Wright also edited the following volumes:

Wright was also the editor of

The older versions, then, are:

Because Middle English contains letters not found in modern English, I've used a special font, "Junicode" created by Professor Peter S. Baker, Professor of English, University of Virginia on some pages.  I will note on the individual carol's page which ones need this font. You can obtain a copy of this font from his website Old English at the University of Virginia (select "Windows TrueType," or right click here, and then select "Save File As" to save a copy of the zipped file to your computer).  This font must be downloaded and installed before these pages will display accurately.

Wright, from the Preface to Songs and Carols Now First Printed, From a Manuscript of the Fifteenth Century (London: The Percy Society, 1847):

The great variations in the different copies of the same song, shew that they were taken down from oral recitation, and had been often preserved by memory among minstrels who were not unskillful at composing, and who were not only in the habit of voluntarily or involuntarily modifying the songs as they passed through their hands, and adding or omitting stanzas, but of making up new songs by stringing together phrases and lines, and even whole stanzas, from the different compositions which were imprinted on their memories, — imitating in this the practice of the more ancient bards of the Anglo-Saxons.

Concerning the source for this volume, Wright noted:

The following very curious collection of old English Songs and Carols is printed verbatim from a manuscript at present in the possession of the Editor. It appears by the writing and language to have been written in the latter half of the fifteenth century, probably during the period intervening between the latter end of the reign of Henry VI [1421-1471], and the beginning of that of Henry VII [1457-1509]; a date which is confirmed by the fact that the few other copies of songs in this collection that occur elsewhere, are invariably found in manuscripts of the reign of Henry VI or of the age immediately following.

This manuscript has in all probability belonged to a professed minstrel, who sang at festivals and merry makings, and it has therefore been thought to merit publication entire, as giving a general view of the classes of poetry then popular. A rather large proportion of its contents consists of carols and religious songs, such as were sung at Christmas, and perhaps at some other of the great festivals of the church; and these are interesting illustrations of the manners and customs of the age.

Manuscript collections of songs like the present, of so early a date, are of great rarity. The only one with which I am acquainted, which may be considered of exactly the same character, is the MS. Sloane, No 2593, in the British Museum, which has generally been ascribed to the reign of Henry VI. On a comparison of the contents of the two manuscripts, it has been found that a few of the pieces printed in the present volume are found in the Sloane MS., and they have been indicated in the notes; one or two are also found separately in other manuscripts; and a diligent search would probably bring to light others: but by much the larger number of the songs contained in our manuscript, including some of the most interesting and curious, appear to be unique, and the others are in general much better and more complete copies than those previously known.

He does not further identify the manuscript. However, the manuscript was supposed to have next be given to William Chappell, but it disappeared before delivery could be accomplished. Many years later, it was found in the estate of a goldsmith and antiquarian from Liverpool.

But it wasn't long before the five joys were extended to seven joys, which is among the most popular to be found in broadsides -- selling for a half-penny or a penny each during the Christmas-tide -- and later into bound collections, including one of the earliest in the Victorian era, published by William Sandys in 1833, "Joyes Seven," or known by its first line, The First Good Joy Our Mary Had.

In addition to manuscripts, we also find versions of this song on the old broadsides that were sold at a penny or a half-penny each during the Christmas-tide:

There are numerous carols enumerating the joys of Mary (including 5, 7, and 12), including:

  1. Off The 5 Joyes Of Owr Lady (Wright, 1847)

  2. The Ferst Joye As I Zu Telle ("Joyes Fyve") (Sandys, 1833)

  3. The Ferste Joye, As I 3ou Telle (Wright, 1856)
  4. The First Good Joy Our Mary Had (Sandys) (a.k.a. Joyes Seven; in total, 12 Joys - 7 from Sandys, 5 from Husk) (with sheet music and notes) [this page]

  5. The Five Joys (Rickert)

  6. The Five Joys of the Virgin (Wright, 1845)

  7. The Seven Joys of Mary - Version 1 (Bramley & Stainer) (with sheet music)

  8. The Seven Joys Of Mary - Version 2 (Shaw and Dearmer) (with sheet music)

  9. The Seven Joys of Mary - RR Terry (with sheet music)

  10. The Seven Joys Of Mary (John Jacob Niles) (with note)

  11. The Seven Rejoices Of Mary (RR Terry)

  12. The Ten Joys Of Christmas (Sharp) (with sheet music and note)

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These notes are from Songs and Carols Now First Printed, From a Manuscript of the Fifteenth Century

Editor's Note. The following account is from William Chappell, The Ballad Literature and Popular Music of the Olden Time (London: Chappell & Co., 1859), pp. 41-43:

A curious collection of the songs and Christmas carols of this reign (Henry VI.) have been printed recently by the Percy Society. (Songs and Carols, No. 73.)

The manuscript book from which they are taken, had, in all probability, belonged a country minstrel who sang at festivals and merry makings, and it has been, most judiciously, printed entire, as giving a general view of the classes of poetry then popular. A proportion of its contents consists of carols and religious songs, such as were sung at Christmas, and perhaps at other festivals of the Church. Another class, in which the MS. is, for its date, peculiarly rich, consists of drinking songs. It also contains a number of those satirical songs against the fair sex, and especially against shrews, which were so common in the middle ages, and have a certain degree of importance as showing the condition of private society among our forefathers. The larger number of the songs, including some the most interesting and curious, appear to be unique, and the others are in general much better and more complete copies than those previously known (viz, in MS. Sloane, No. 2593, Brit. Mus.). The editor of the MS. (Mr. T. Wright) observes that “The great variations in the different copies of the same song, show that they were taken down from oral recitation, and had often been preserved by memory among minstrels, who were not unskilful at composing, and who were not only in the habit of, voluntarily or involuntarily, modifying the songs as they passed through their hands, and adding or omitting stanzas, but of making up new songs by stringing together phrases and lines, and even whole stanzas from the different compositions which were imprinted on their memories.” But what renders the manuscript peculiarly interesting, is, that it contains the melodies of some of the songs as well as the words. From this it appears that the same tune was used for different words. At page 62 is a note, which in modern spelling is as follows: “This is the tune for the song following; if so be that ye will have another tune, it may he at your pleasure, for I have set all the song.” The words of the carol, “Nowell, Nowell,” (Noel) are written under the notes, but the wassail song that follows, and for which the tune was also intended, is of a very opposite character, “Bryng us in good ale.” I have printed the first verse of each under the tune, but it requires to be sung more quickly for the wassail song than for the carol.

The notation of the original is in semibreves, minims, and crotchets, which diminished to crotchets, quavers, and semiquavers, as became necessary in modernizing the notation; for the quickest note then in use was the crotchet.1  The Christmas carol partakes so much of the character of sacred music, that it is not surprising it should be in an old scale. If there were not the flat at the signature, which takes off a little of the barbarity, it would be exactly in the eighth Gregorian tone.

There are seven verses to the carol, but as they are not particularly interesting, perhaps the words of the wassail song will be preferred, although we should not now sing of “our blessed lady,” as was common in those days.

Bring us in no brown bread, for that is made of bran,
Nor bring us in no white bread, for therein is no gain,
    But bring us in good ale, and bring us in good ale;
    For our blessed Lady’s sake, bring us in good ale.

Bring us in no beef, for there is many bones,
But bring us in good ale, for that go’th down at once. And bring, &c.

Bring us in no bacon, for that is passing fat,
But bring us in good ale, and give us enough of that. And bring, &c.

Bring us in no mutton, for that is passing lean,
Nor bring us in no tripes, for they be seldom clean. But bring, &c.

Bring us in no eggs, for there are many shells,
But bring us in good ale, and give us nothing else. But bring, &c.

Bring us in no butter, for therein are many hairs,
Nor bring us in no pig’s flesh, for that will make us bears. But bring, &c.

Bring us in no puddings, for therein is all God’s good,
Nor bring us in no venison, that is not for our blood. But bring, &c.

Bring us in no capon’s flesh, for that is often dear,
Nor bring us in no duck’s flesh, for they slobber in the mere. [mire]

But bring us in good ale, and bring us in good ale,
For our blessed lady’s sake, bring us in good ale.

An inferior copy of this song, without music, is in Harl. M.S., No. 541, from which it has been printed in Ritson’s Ancient Songs and Ballads, p. xxxiv. and xxxv.

Note from Chappell:

1. After the Percy Society had printed the Songs, I was to have had the opportunity of transcribing all the Music; but, in the mean time, the bookbinder to whom this rare Ms. was entrusted, disappeared, and with him the manuscript, which is, perhaps, already in some library in the United States. Return

Editor's Note:

I do not know why Mr. Chappell believed that the manuscript might have ended up in the United States.

Subsequently, the manuscript was found and purchased for £16 by the Bodleian Library from the estate of Joseph Mayer (1803–1886) of Liverpool, who was an English goldsmith, antiquary and collector:

Shelfmark: MS. Eng. poet. e. 1

Summary Catalogue no. 29734

From a volume containing a description of the holdings of the Bodleian Library, University of Oxford, Volume 5, containing "Miscellaneous, 1887. 29735-38," pp. 679-680.

"Seventy-six songs, religious and other, including some Christmas carols and drinking songs, presumably collected for the use of a professed minstrel: a few have the music as well as the words. This valuable MS. was edited for the Percy Society (vol. 23) in 1847, see also W. Chappell's Popular Music of the Olden Time (1855-7), i. 41. Most of the songs are in English or mixed English and Latin, a few in Latin alone.

"In 1847 this volume was owned by Thomas Wright, who edited it: he subsequently lost it, and it was bought by the Bodleian at the Joseph Mayer sale (lot 42) on July 19, 1887, for £16.

"[On this MS. see further 'Early Bodleian music,' i. p. xxiv and plates 99-100 (where I have ascribed the date 'about 1485-1490'), ii. pp. 182-4. E. W. B. N.]

"Now MS. Eng. Poet. E. 1."

The volume Early Bodleian Music is also known as Dufay And His Contemporaries: Fifty Compositions Ranging From About A.D. 1400 To 1440 (Novello, 1898); it was transcribed from manuscript Canonici misc. 213, in the Bodleian Library, Oxford, by J.F.R. Stainer and C. Stainer, with a critical analysis of the music by Sir John Stainer. It is available at Google Books: Dufay And His Contemporaries-GB. and the Internet Archive: Dufay And His Contemporaries-IA. Note that the songs are in French.

See in the Bodleian Library, MS. Eng. poet. e. 1 (scroll down to get to "e. 1"), c. 1460-1480. There is a single image, fol. 41v, described as "Musical notation in a minstrel's manuscript; the text begins "Nowell, nowell, nowell, pis is pe salutacyon of pe angel gabryell" with "Bryng us in good ale" in lower margin, c. 1460-90; anglicana script." It doesn't appear that the entire volume has been scanned, or, if so, that it is readily available for viewing.

Wright's Songs and Carols Now First Printed From a Manuscript of the Fifteenth Century was also issued as Volume 23, Issue 1 of of the Percy Society's series "Early English Poetry, Ballads, and Popular Literature of the Middle Ages."

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Note from Wright, Songs and Carols from a Manuscript in the British Museum of the Fifteenth Century:

Off the 5 joyes. There is a song on the same subject, and in the same style, in the Sloane MS., fol. 9, r0, but differing in the words with the exception of a phrase here and there.

Note:

Versions of this song on this web site:

Another, different "five joys" song: The Five Joys of the Virgin (Wright, 1845)

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Preface to the Songs and Carols

Source: Thomas Wright, ed., Songs and Carols Printed From A Manuscript in the Sloane Collection in the British Museum (London: William Pickering, 1836).

Long ago, the Sloane MS. No. 2593, had been pointed out by Ritson as "a singularly curious relic," and he had printed five songs from it, three of which I have reproduced in the present selection, as my object was to give twenty of what seemed to me the most important pieces it contained. Two or three errors which had found their way into Ritson's edition, and which I trust have been carefully expunged, will also perhaps palliate the crime of having given what has before been printed from the same originals.

In the catalogue by Ayscough, the contents of this volume are justly described as being "some pious, some the contrary," and I have endeavoured to give a fair sample of both; but as the former kind, the pious songs, are infinitely more numerous and on the whole of less importance as well in this manuscript as in the whole mass of Early English Poetry, I have given every specimen which occurred in it of the latter class, and have contented myself with a selection only from the other. In this I had also another object, that of showing how easily things sacred and things profane were reconciled and brought together in the minds of our uncultivated ancestors, who in the same breath could pass from the praises of 'Marie Mylde,’ to the merest ribaldry. The pious songs are in some instance not devoid of merit, and I should have perhaps done well to have made a larger collection; but there is a wide field for the gleaning of such productions, and should these tracts be continued, it is my intention to give a selection of pious songs, not from one, but from many manuscripts, and those of different ages.

Ritson is perhaps not far wrong in conjecturing this MS. to be of the reign of Hen. V. If anything, I think may be rather earlier, but its greatest antiquity must be included within the fifteenth century. The circumstances mentioned in the xivth song may perhaps lead to a more exact estimate of the antiquity of the songs themselves.

These songs are written in a dialect of which the most prominent characteristic are the replacing of –

=> sh,

On the other hand, we have in one instance schylde, for chylde, which, however, is probably only an error of the scribe.

=> w by qu and qw, as quan, quat, qwete, quer, qwyppe.

=> e, by y or i in the terminations of the verbs: see the note on Song x.

There has not as yet been enough done in the classification of our dialects, to enable us to speak on the subject very decisively, except perhaps in one or two instances. Some of the changes above mentioned appear to have been more or less common to several dialects, but certain extracts given by Sharp (in his Essay on the Coventry Mysteries) from the registers at Coventry, bear so perfect a resemblance to the dialect of our Songs, that, if the circumstance of a manuscript having been written at a given place be considered as a proof of its being the dialect of the district, we should feel no difficulty in giving the Sloane MS. to Warwickshire, and I have sometimes thought that the Songs it contains were a collection made for the purpose of being sung in the mysteries themselves. It must be confessed, however, that the Pageant of the Sheremen and Taylers, which Mr. Sharp has printed, as well as the other short pieces which he has joined with it, contain none of the foregoing characteristic.

The initial at the head of the preface is taken from the MS. Harl. No. 2895, of the 11th century, and represents a popular topic of middle age superstition; those who will may consider it as the combat between the Saxon Beowulf and the redoutable fire-drake. The cut at the end of the preface, and that at the end of the notes, are from MS. Reg. 2, B. vii. The latter, which is described in the note on Song i, forms one of a series of drawings illustrative of scripture history, and has under it the couplet,

Icii fuyit Adam en secle tere,
Eve file pur robe fere.”

While alluding to this note, it will be well to say that the Latin proverb quoted in it is found in the MS. Harl. No. 3362, fol. 7; I had quoted it from memory, but I find that it varies from the original only in the orthography of the first word, quum for cum.

THOMAS WRIGHT.

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From: The First Good Joy Our Mary Had (Sandys) (a.k.a. Joyes Seven; in total, 12 Joys - 7 from Sandys, 5 from Husk) (with sheet music and notes) [this page]

Sheet Music from Rev. Charles Lewis Hutchins, Carols Old and Carols New (Boston: Parish Choir, 1916), Carol #429
MIDI / Noteworthy Composer / PDF

Music also available at An Online Christmas Songbook

Sandys' Note (1833):

This [is] taken from popular broad-side carols, [and contains] rather curious legends, of which may have already been observed in the old carol for St. Stephen. This ... carol is similar to the old one called "Joyis Fyve." [The Ferst Joye As I Zu Telle]

Also found in Joshua Sylvester, A Garland of Christmas Carols, Ancient and Modern Including Some Never Before Given In Any Collection. Edited, With Notes. (London: John Camden Hotten, 1861), pp. 132-5:

Numeral Hymns were common in the olden time. Frequently they were set as tasks for children to acquire, and he received most praise who could ascend correctly to the highest number.

The following is one of the commonest, at the same time that it is one of the most ancient, of all our popular Carols. The original, preserved among the Sloane MSS., and of a date not later than the fourteenth century, is entitled " Joyes Fyve." As a specimen I give the first verse.

Ye ferste joye as i zu telle
Wt mary met seynt Gab'elle,
Heyl mary i grete ye welle,
wt fadr & sone & holy gost.

Perhaps some apology is necessary for the expression which is made to rhyme with "one" in the first verse. Another word was not easily found, and the taste of the time was widely different from what it is now. At first I was inclined to omit the Carol, but its popularity pleaded its insertion.

Note that Hugh Keyte, an editor of The New Oxford Book of Carols (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1992) believes that "Joshua Sylvester" is a pseudonym for a collaboration between William Sandys (1792-1874) and William Henry Husk (1814-1887). See Appendix 4.

Also found in William Henry Husk, Songs of the Nativity. London: John Camden Hotten, 1868:

This is one of the most popular of carols. The earliest known version is in a manuscript of the fourteenth century, where it is entitled "Joyes Fyve." The version called "The Seven Joys" (the first seven verses that are here given) is, and has been for a very long time past, annually reprinted by the printers of carol-sheets throughout the entire length and breadth of the land. The unfortunate poet's difficulty of finding a rhyme for "one" in the first verse had led him to use a rather singular expression; but we may be certain nothing irreverent was intended, and the text as it stands, homely though it be, appeals to the human heart much more forcibly than some modern alterations of it, such as,

"To see our blessed Saviour
Sit upon the throne;"

which, apart from the impropriety of making the site of her holy Son in His glory, the first of the blessed Virgin's joys, puts wholly aside the incident which, if not all men, certainly all women, must admit naturally caused the Holy Mother her greatest happiness. The extension of the Seven joys to Twelve is confined to the northern parts of the country, being only found on broadsides printed at Newcastle late in the last, or early in the present century. In the present version the first seven verses are given from the older and most generally followed copies, the Newcastle version, whence the last five verses are taken, having corrupted the former portion of the carol to a very great extent. In its extended form the carol has never yet been given in any collection.

The first seven verses were also found in A. H. Bullen, A Christmas Garland (London: John C. Nimmo, 1885), pp. 55-7 under the title Joys Seven. He also notes "There is an older carol of a similar sort, entitled, 'Joyis Fyve.'" [The Ferst Joye As I Zu Telle]

Editor's Note:

There are numerous carols enumerating the joys of Mary (including 5, 7, and 12), including.

  1. Off The 5 Joyes Of Owr Lady (Wright, 1847)

  2. The Ferst Joye As I Zu Telle ("Joyes Fyve") (Sandys, 1833)

  3. The Ferste Joye, As I 3ou Telle (Wright, 1856)
  4. The First Good Joy Our Mary Had (Sandys) (a.k.a. Joyes Seven; in total, 12 Joys - 7 from Sandys, 5 from Husk) (with sheet music and notes) [this page]

  5. The Five Joys (Rickert)

  6. The Five Joys of the Virgin (Wright, 1845)

  7. The Seven Joys of Mary - Version 1 (Bramley & Stainer) (with sheet music)

  8. The Seven Joys Of Mary - Version 2 (Shaw and Dearmer) (with sheet music)

  9. The Seven Joys of Mary - RR Terry (with sheet music)

  10. The Seven Joys Of Mary (John Jacob Niles) (with note)

  11. The Seven Rejoices Of Mary (RR Terry)

  12. The Ten Joys Of Christmas (Sharp) (with sheet music and note)

This is one of many "counting" songs among the hymns and carols of Christmas. See the notes to the Twelve Days of Christmas.

Hugh Keyte and Andrew Parrott have a lengthy history of this carol following carol # 131 in The New Oxford Book of Carols (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1992). Another excellent history can be found in Ian Bradley's, The Penguin Book of Carols (London: Penguin, 1999), Carol #76.

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Songs and Carols from a Manuscript in the British Museum of the Fifteenth Century (London: Printed by Richards for The Warton Club, 1856)

Note from the Preface by Wright.

The Sloane MS., from which the present collection is printed, has been generally ascribed, from the character of the writing, to the reign of Henry VI [1422 to 1461]. I have thought, therefore, that it would not be unacceptable to the readers of our old poetry, if I gave a complete edition of the Sloane Manuscript, as a companion to the volume printed for the Percy Society.

Question: any more to the Preface?

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From Rickert:

5. The fifth joy, withouten dene,1
In heaven He crowned His mother clean,
That was well with the eye a-seen,2
    With Father, Son and Holy Ghost.

Notes:

1. Doubt. Return

2. Text: wol wil the eyr a sene. Return

Nothing else?

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The Five Joys of the Virgin

From a MS. in the Library of Trin. Coll. Camb. B. U, 39, of the first half of the thirteenth century.

Source: Thomas Wright and James Orchard Halliwell, eds., Reliquiæ Antiquæ. Vol. 2 of 2. (London: John Russell Smith, 1845), pp. 48-49.

V. Gaudia.

Any more?

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From Bramley and Stainer

Sheet Music from Bramley & Stainer

Seven_Joys_Of_Mary_12a.gif (377075 bytes) Seven_Joys_Of_Mary_12b.gif (405189 bytes)

Sheet Music from Ralph Dunstan, The Cornish Song Book (London: Reid Bros., Ltd., 1929), p. 84.

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Sheet Music from Martin Shaw and Percy Dearmer, The English Carol Book, First Series (London: A. R. Mowbray & Co., Ltd., 1913), Carol #26

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According to Niles, collected in 1933 in Cherokee County, North Carolina

Neil Lomax, Folk Songs of North America (Garden City, New York: Doubleday and Company, Dolphin Books, 1975):

"The puritans looked upon the old English Christmas customs as Popish or pagan. The Puritan Parliament wiped the holiday off the calendar, and Roundhead soldiers clapped carol singers into prison. Thus, during the early years of the English colonization of America, carol-singing was in public disrepute; it continued only in remote country districts in England, and not until the time of Dickens was it rediscovered by antiquarians and revived in English cities. The Lowland Scots and the Scots-Irish Calvinists had already abandoned Christmas.

Perhaps this explains why so few of the English carols, and none of the ritual dances and ceremonies survived in American folk tradition. Most of Niles' carols seem to come from English collections. Aside from the ballad of Joseph and Mary and the Cherry Tree, the Number Song is the most common folk carol in the United States. Various forms of the Songs of the Twelve have been collected everywhere in the United States, and The Seven Pleasures of Mary, first printed in the fifteenth century, has been found in the Blue Ridge and Smokey Mountains.

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Sheet Music From Cecil J. Sharp, English Folk-Carols (London: Novello & Co., Ltd., 1911), pp. 33-5.
MIDI / NWC / PDF

Sheet Music from Cecil Sharp, Folk Songs from Somerset. Fifth Series. (London: Simpkin & Co.,
LTD., 1909), #CXXV, pp. 65-67.

Ten_Joys_Mary-Sharp-Somerset-V-p65.jpg (66603 bytes) Ten_Joys_Mary-Sharp-Somerset-V-p66.jpg (54694 bytes) Ten_Joys_Mary-Sharp-Somerset-V-p67.jpg (46246 bytes)

Notes from Sharp:

Sung by Mrs. Jane Duddridge at Mark, Somerset.

This carol has already been printed in Folk-Songs from Somerset (No. 125). [Cecil Sharp, Folk Songs from Somerset. Fifth Series. (London: Simpkin & Co., LTD., 1909), #CXXV, pp. 65-67, above.]

The words given in the text are those which Mrs. Duddridge sang to me. She learned them from her grandfather. Of several variants that I have collected all, with one exception, conclude with the seventh Joy. One version, however, noted in Gloucestershire, gives twelve Joys, the fourth lines of the last two stanzas running “To have the keys of heaven” and “ To have the keys of hell.”

The “ten gentlemen” in the Somerset variant may possibly refer to the cleansing of the ten lepers. The Gloucestershire singer sang “ To write with a golden pen,” which is probably a fanciful rendering invented for the sake of the rhyme.

Sandys prints two versions of the words, the first of which, “Joyis five,” is from the Sloane MS. The scheme of this is similar to that of the Somerset carol but the wording is different. The other is almost identical with the first stanzas of Mrs. Duddridge’s version.

The carol with a traditional air is in Bramley and Stainer’s collection. The words are on broadsides by Evans and Thompson.

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Sandys, 1833:

The ferste joye as i zu telle (Joyis Fyve), 53 - From the Sloane Manuscript.

The first good joy our Mary had, 157 (Joys Seven)

    Check to see correct spelling: Sloan or Sloane?

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