The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

The Wassail Song

In Dialect, War-zale

Words and Music: English Traditional

See generally Wassailing - Notes On The Songs

Source: Ralph Dunstan, The Cornish Song Book (London: Reid Bros., Ltd., 1929), p. 132.

1. O Mistress, at your door our Wassail begin(s),
Pray open the door, and let us come in,

Refrain:
With our Wassail, Wassail, Wassail, Wassail,
And joy come to our jolly Wassail!

2. O Mistress, at your door we kindly salute,
For it is an old custom you cannot dispute, With our Wassail, etc.

3. O Mistress and Master, sitting down by the fire,
While we poor Wassail-men are travelling thro' the mire, With our Wassail, etc.

4. O Mistress and Master, sitting down at your ease,
With their hands in their pockets to give what they please To our Wassail, etc.

5. Come young men and maidens, I pray you draw near;
Come fill up our bowl with some cider or beer, With our Wassail, etc.

6. You see how we'll smile at our flowing Bowl
Just now it is empty, by-and-bye it'll be full, With our Wassail, etc.

7. I wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year,
A plenty of money and a barrel of beer, With our Wassail, etc.

8. I wish you a blessing, and a long time to live,
Because you're so free and so willing to give To our Wassail, etc.

Sheet Music

Note from Dr. Dunstan:

The above are the "regular" stanzas. Others might be interpolated at pleasure especially if the leading singer happened to be a "rhymer"; e.g.,

    I hope that your apples will prosper and grow,
    That you may have cider and a plenty to bestow, To our Wassail, etc.

    I hope that your barley may prosper and grow,
    That you may have been and a plenty to bestow, To our Wassail, etc.

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