The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

Soon The Hoar Old Year Will Leave Us

For New Year's Eve

See: Deck The Hall

Compare: Deck The Hall With Holly
Deck the Hall With Boughs of Holly

Words: These Welsh “Nos Galan” lyrics were written by John Ceiriog Hughes with the English lyrics provided by John Oxenford (1812-1877), ca. 1873.

Tune: Nos Galan (“New Year's Eve”) from John Thomas's Welsh Melodies with Welsh and English Poetry; this series by Thomas was a collaboration with John Talhaiarn Jones and Thomas Oliphant. There were four volumes, the first two published in 1862, the third in 1870 and the fourth in 1874.
MIDI / Noteworthy Composer / XML

Source: Charles Villiers Stanford, ed., The National Song Book: A Complete Collection of the Folk-Songs, Carols, And Rounds (London: Boosey & Co., 1906), p. 199.

1. Soon the hoar old year will leave us,
     Fal, la, la , la, la, la, la, la, la.
But the parting must not grieve us,
     Fal, la, la , la, la, la, la, la, la.
When the New Year comes tomorrow,
     Fal, la, la , la, la, la, la, la, la.
Let him find no trace of sorrow,
     Fal, la, la , la, la, la, la, la, la.

2. He our pleasures may redouble,
     Fal, la, la , la, la, la, la, la, la.
He may bring us store of trouble,
     Fal, la, la , la, la, la, la, la, la.
Hope the best and gaily meet him,
     Fal, la, la , la, la, la, la, la, la.
With a jovial chorus greet him,
     Fal, la, la , la, la, la, la, la, la.

3. At his birth he brings us gladness,
     Fal, la, la , la, la, la, la, la, la.
Ponder not on future sadness,
     Fal, la, la , la, la, la, la, la, la.
Anxious care is now but folly,
     Fal, la, la , la, la, la, la, la, la.
Fill the mead-cup, hang the holly,
     Fal, la, la , la, la, la, la, la, la.

Sheet Music from Charles Villiers Stanford, The National Song Book (1906)

Sheet music from Brinley Richards, ed., The Songs of Wales (Caneuon Cymru) 4th Edition. (London: Roosley & Co., 1873, 1879), pp. 154-157.

Nos_Galan-Richards-1879-154.jpg (86847 bytes) Nos_Galan-Richards-1879-155.jpg (105027 bytes) Nos_Galan-Richards-1879-156.jpg (100956 bytes) Nos_Galan-Richards-1879-157.jpg (87834 bytes)

See A Garritan Community Christmas for an MP3:
Deck the Halls, Fabio Vicentini

Note: In a 2008 article in Wales Online, Robin Turner wrote that Dr. Ian Bradley, a theologian and scholar at the University of St Andrews in Scotland, discovered that poet John Ceiriog Hughes (1832-1887) gave us the first published lyrics in Welsh. I have yet to determine a date.

The earliest publication that I have found was in Brinley Richards, ed., The Songs of Wales (Caneuon Cymru) 4th. Edition. (London: Roosley & Co., 1873, 1879), pp. 154-157. Welsh Words by Ceiriog Hughes; Music edited by Brinley Richards; English Words by "Sir Walter Scott, Mrs. Hemans, John Oxenford, Walter Maynard, Miss Hayes &c."

As I understand it, the word “hoar” is short for “hoar frost” which is defined as a type of frost consisting of ice crystals forming a white deposit. It is also used to show a characteristic of age, especially having gray or white hair.

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