Monday, December 22, 2008

Coventry Carol

We had a beautiful advent service at our church last night. Our gifted pianist explained the history behind the Coventry Carol and then played it for us on the piano. It's dark and yet filled with hope. I hope you enjoy listening to these two versions.

excellent website is filled with interesting information:

In The Pageant of the Shearmen and Tailors, this gentle lullaby was sung by the women of Bethlehem to their babies, urging them to "Be still, be still, my little child," just before the unwilling soldiers of King Herod came to slaughter their infants in Herod's attempt to eliminate a competitor, the newborn King of the Jews. In the liturgical calendar, those children are commemorated on December 28, the Feast of the Holy Innocents

The lyrics:

1. Lullay, Thou little tiny Child,
By, by, lully, lullay.
Lullay, Thou little tiny Child.
By, by, lully, lullay.

2. O sisters, too, how may we do,
For to preserve this day;
This poor Youngling for whom we sing,
By, by, lully, lullay.

3. Herod the King, in his raging,
Charged he hath this day;
His men of might, in his own sight,
All children young, to slay.

4. Then woe is me, poor Child, for Thee,
And ever mourn and say;
For Thy parting, nor say nor sing,
By, by, lully, lullay

The Cambridge Singers:

This is a beautiful rendition by Phil Keaggy:


Dot O said...

I wanted to wish you a very Merry and Blessed Christmas, Janet, just in case I didn't get to visit your blog again before the holiday!

My wish for you is a healthy, happy, and holy holiday season for you and your family.

God bless.

Donna Boucher said...

This has been one of my favorites since I sang it at Stephens :o)

Anonymous said...

Janet - we sang a VERY dramatic version of it in college - but I love the simple carol best - I've always been a text first kind of girl.

Have a wonderful Christmas!!

jociegal said...

Very beautiful! Just found your blog today and I am enjoying it. Cheers!