The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

A Song Of the Ivy and the Holly

Alternate Title: Nay Iuy, Nay, Hyt Shall Not Be, I Wys

For Christmas

Traditional Middle English
William Sandys, Christmas Carols Ancient and Modern (London: Richard Beckley, 1833)

Nay iuy, nay (Sandys, 1852)
The Contest of the Ivy and the Holly (Husk, 1868, with notes)

See Notes Under The Holly And The Ivy.

This carol requires the installation of the "Junicode" font for best display.
See notes in F A Q

Nay iuy, nay, hyt shall not be, I wys
Let holy hafe şe maystry as şe maner ys.

1. Holy stond in şe hall fayre to behold,
Iuy stond wtout şe dore, she ys full sore a cold. Refrain

2. Holy and hys mery men şey dawnsyn and şey syng,
Iuy and hur maydenys şey wepyn and şey wryng. Refrain

3. Ivy hath a lyve she laghtyt wt  şe colde,
So mot şey all ha fae şt wt jvy hold. Refrain

4. Holy hat berys as rede as any rose,
The foster şe hunters kepe hem fro şe dos. Refrain

5. Iuy hath berys as blake as any slo,
There com şe oule and ete hym as she goo. Refrain

6. Holy hath byrdys a ful fayre flok,
The nyghtyngale, şe perpyinguy, şe gayntyl lauyrok. Refrain

7. Gode iuy what byrdys ast şu?
Non but şe howlat şt kreye how how. Refrain

Sandys' Note:

The song on the Ivy and Holly is from Harl. MS 5396. (temp. Hen. VI.) and is printed also in Ritson's Ancient Songs.  See notes under The Contest of the Ivy and the Holly.

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