God rest you merry, Gentlemen

Christmas Songs

God rest you merry, Gentlemen (1)


From “A Song-book of Folk and Pop Music”

by Mario Papa & Giuliano Iantorno, Zanichelli Editore, Bologna, 1977


God rest you merry, Gentlemen,

Let nothing you dismay,

Remember Christ our Saviour

Was born on Christmas Day,

To save us all from Satan's power

When we had gone astray.


Oh, tidings of comfort and joy,

Comfort and joy,

Oh, tidings of comfort and joy.


In Bethlehem and in Jewry,

This blessed Babe was born,

And laid within a manger,

Upon this blessed morn;

The which His Mother Mary

Did nothing take in scorn.


Oh, tidings of comfort and joy, etc.


From God our Heavenly Father,

A blessed Angel carne;

And unto certain Shepherds

Brought tidings of the same:

How that in Bethlehem was born,

The Son of God by name.


Oh, tidings of comfort and joy, etc.


(1) This is certainly one of the best known Christmas Carols alt over Britain.


Christmas Carols

The tradition of singing carols, or joyous songs at Christmas time is older than Christmas itself. It dates back to pre-Christian times and the mid-winter YuIe-tide when an enormous log was burnt ceremonially, accompanied by feasting and drinking and joyous singing. After Christianity was introduced into England, the ceremony was associated with Christmas, the season of hospitality and good cheer. Thus until quite recently, groups of and boys would walk around the country-side after dark, guided by the tight of a lantern, and sing carols at the door of every homestead. They were then invited in and given mince-pies and something warm and alcoholic to drink. ‘God rest you merry, Gentiemen, let nothing you dismay ' echoes the spirit of good will and new hope of the carol singers.