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Which Christmas carols

Have the worst or silliest lyrics?

Jeff  Male  East Sussex
16-Dec-2014 08:36 Message #4537445
In "We Wish You a Merry Christmas":-

Now bring us some figgy pudding
Now bring us some figgy pudding
Now bring us some figgy pudding
And bring some out here

For we all like figgy pudding
We all like figgy pudding
We all like figgy pudding
So bring some out here

And we won't go until we've got some
We won't go until we've got some
We won't go until we've got some
So bring some out here
Orson  Male  Tayside
16-Dec-2014 15:25 Message #4537493
On the first day of Christmas
There was a Partridge in a Pear tree
Till I blew off its feathered head
Now there's eleven less verses he he

Argonaut  Male  Lancashire
16-Dec-2014 15:59 Message #4537511
Come to think of it - if teh 12 days of Christmas is taken literally then 'my true love' sent:

12 Patridges & 12 pear trees
11 turtle doves
30 French hens
36 calling birds
40 gold rings
42 geese a-laying - so that would add up to 40 goose eggs as well
42 swans a-swimming
40 maids a milking - so the 40 cows or goats must have come with them
36 ladies dancing
30 lords a-leaping (presumably onto the available maids or ladies dancing)
22 pipers (who were also probably leaping onto the available women)
12 drummers drumming (who got there too late so missed out on all the fun!)

I doubt you can get any more ridiculous than that!

Jeff  Male  East Sussex
17-Dec-2014 18:02 Message #4537778
"11 turtle doves"
There should be 22 turtle doves.

"42 geese a-laying - so that would add up to 40 goose eggs as well"
Why 40 goose eggs? (or up to 40?)

In several years Radio 4 has broadcast a play by Brian Sibley lasting about 15 minutes called "Yet another partridge in a pear tree", in which each day Cynthia Bracegirdle (played by Penelope Keith) writes a letter to her true love, initially grateful for the gifts, but in subsequent days driven mad by the noise & nuisance of them, until at the end her solicitor writes to him including:-
"We are the executors of the estate of the above-named deceased, and are writing to acknowledge receipt of your recent delivery of twelve drummers drumming.
You will no doubt be distressed to learn that, shortly after the arrival of these gentlemen, our client, in what must be described as a somewhat deranged state of mind, travelled to Eastbourne and threw herself off the top of Beachy Head."

Webpage lists numerous versions in the items and the number of each item. For example, the original 1780 version includes 4 "colly" birds (European black birds, maybe crows) instead of "calling birds", and other versions include 11 "badgers baiting" (1867), 10 "asses racing" (1905), 9 "bears a beating" (1900).
The 1905 version also has 1 "Goldie ring, and the part of a June apple tree" as well as 5 "Goldie rings".

Webpage has a lot of interesting information, including religious issues, and (Jason please note):-
"If you're a jewelry fan, you're going to be disappointed to learn that it's not actually gold rings that are given on day 5. Once again, this is reference to birds (do you see a pattern here?) and the 5 golden rings are said to represent the gold rings on a pheasant's neck. Why the pheasant?
It all begins with the legend of Jason and the Argonauts back in 750 B.C. ...".
Jeff  Male  East Sussex
20-Dec-2014 19:00 Message #4538759
"God rest ye merry, gentlemen
Let nothing you dismay,
For Jesus Christ our Saviour
Was born upon this Day.
To save us all from Satan's power
When we were gone astray
O tidings of comfort and joy."
(This is subject to slight variations in the first word of some lines.)

In the first line, if the comma is before "merry":-
- Is this addressed only to gentlemen and not to ladies and children?
- Is there a distinction between gentlemen and other men?
- Although "man" can mean male & female "mankind", isn't "gentlemen" practically always male?
- Does "God rest ye merry" mean that God should make you relax (and perhaps sleep) in a jolly mood?
- Aren't there more appropriate peaceful resting moods than being jolly?

If the comma is placed before "merry":-
- Is this addressed to only jolly men?
- Does God send jolly men to rest, even if they don't want to rest?
- If "God rest ye" means something like "God put your mind at ease", aren't there more appropriate people to say that to than to jolly men?

Should nothing dismay people? Even appalling things that happen to oneself and/or other people?
Wouldn't it be better to address this to people in terrible circumstances rather than to jolly men?

Does everybody get saved from Satan's power, regardless how good/bad they are? Even before Jesus was born? Or crucified?
Jeff  Male  East Sussex
21-Dec-2014 14:16 Message #4539095
"I saw three ships come sailing in,
On Christmas day ...
And what [or who] was in those ships all three?
On Christmas day ...
Our Saviour Christ and his lady [or The Virgin Mary and Christ were there]
On Christmas day ...
Pray whither sailed those ships all three?
On Christmas day...
Oh, they sailed into Bethlehem,
On Christmas day ...".

Bethlehem is about 15 miles from the Dead Sea, about 40 miles from the Mediterranean Sea, about 70 miles from the Sea of Galilee, (even 2,000 years ago), and there is no large river near Bethlehem, so how "they sailed into Bethlehem" is difficult to see.

The bible makes no mention of Jesus and any lady sailing in ships. Although there are theories that in his early years Jesus travelled to India and Japan, and after the crucifixion Jesus and Mary Magdalene and some others sailed to the south of France.

The UK website of the Mormons (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints) includes "The Book of Mormon tells of the resurrected Jesus Christ and His visit to His faithful followers in ancient America. After His visits to His disciples in the Old World, He descended out of heaven and appeared to His followers in ancient America. The Book of Mormon describes how, during His visit, Jesus Christ healed their sick, taught them His gospel, blessed their children, and called twelve disciples to organize His Church in the Americas
So I wonder whether Jesus and his lady visited the place in Pennsylvania America which was later called Bethlehem, by sailing up the river Lehigh!

Or is that carol nonsense?
JEM95  Female  Oxfordshire
21-Dec-2014 14:28 Message #4539097
I went to a carol concert the other day and we had little booklets with the words printed. All well and good, until I realised that odd words had been changed, 'in the bleak midwinter' became 'in the deep midwinter', and there were other deviations which were worse.
It quite threw me and I wasn't able to perform to my full potential!
capnblackbeard  Male  Hertfordshire
21-Dec-2014 14:40 Message #4539102
Funny Xmas Song - Police Stop My Car
Andromeda  Female  Berkshire
21-Dec-2014 14:50 Message #4539107
I don't always pay attention to the lyrics but I do enjoy listening to carol singers and particularly the children singing in the town centres. Amazingly good voices and it seems to bring out the best in everyone participating and enjoying the carols.
Jeff  Male  East Sussex
22-Dec-2014 09:24 Message #4539293
The Cherry Tree carol (from about 1400AD) has some serious (not parodied) variations of which one is:-

Joseph was an old man, an old man was he,
When he married Virgin Mary, the Queen of Galilee.

As Mary and Joseph were walking one day
To an orchard of cherry trees they happened to stray.

Then Mary said to Joseph, so meek and so mild,
“Pick me some cherries, Joseph, for I am with child.”

Then Joseph flew angry, so angry flew he,
“Let the father of your baby gather cherries for thee.”

The up spoke Lord Jesus from in his mother's womb,
“Bow low down, cherry trees, bow down to the ground.”

And the cherry trees bowed down, bowed low to the ground,
And Mary gathered cherries while Joseph stood round.

Then Joseph he kneeled down and a question gave he,
“Come tell me, pretty baby, when your birthday shall be.”

“On the fifth day of January my birthday shall be,
And the stars in the heaven shall all bow down to me.”

Another variation has last verse:-
“And on the sixth day of January my birthday will be,
When the skies and the elements will tremble for me.”
MrQuiet  Male  Northamptonshire
22-Dec-2014 09:36 Message #4539294
Some of the lyrics are ridiculous as they are with many lyrics of songs and even more so poetry but I'm with you on this one Andromeda.

I don't always pay attention to the lyrics but I do enjoy listening to carol singers and particularly the children singing in the town centres. Amazingly good voices and it seems to bring out the best in everyone participating and enjoying the carols

Great to see so many people being happy all at one time.
Lady  Female  North Yorkshire
22-Dec-2014 12:00 Message #4539323
We have a carol service in my local hospital every year, where hospital staff, volunteers,patients and visitors gather together in an informal setting to sing carols and listen to readings. It's usually held just a few days before Christmas and, for me, it really is the Herald of Christmas. I'm not religious but I love singing along to all those familiar, traditional Christmas Carols. We do a bit of mingling and mince pie eating afterwards and the whole affair puts me in festive mood. I leave there with the feeling that the spirit of Christmas is still alive and well.

The service is on this lunchtime, so I'll be setting off shortly.
I'll probably be returning home to 'deck the halls' with 'the holly and the ivy' , with a song in my heart.

Happy Christmas, one and all xxx
Jeff  Male  East Sussex
23-Dec-2014 11:00 Message #4539593
"We three kings of Orient are;
Bearing gifts we traverse afar,
Field and fountain, moor and mountain,
Following yonder star.

O star of wonder, star of night,
Star with royal beauty bright,
Westward leading, still proceeding,
Guide us to thy perfect light."

But the bible never mentions that they were kings, only "Magi" or "wise men". This morning in Radio 4's Thought for Today the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby mentioned the shepherds and kings visiting Jesus. They should sack him and make me Archbishop instead.

This carol is based on Matthew 2 - no other gospel mentions those events. But Matthew 2 has very dishonest references to the Old Testament - see thread "Happy birthday(?) Jesus. But how old are you?" ( on 26-Dec-12 at 19:11.

It is sometimes said that these kings and the star were prophesied in the Old Testament:-
(b) Psalm 72:11 "May all kings bow down to him and all nations serve him."
But that is part of a prayer, many of whose wants are not met by Jesus.
(b) Isaiah 60:3,6 "Nations will come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn."
But much else in that chapter doesn't apply to Jesus.
(c) In Numbers 24:11 Balaam prophesises: "A star will come out of Jacob; a scepter will rise out of Israel."
But it continues "He will crush the foreheads of Moab, the skulls of all the people of Sheth ... and destroy the survivors of the city." That doesn't relate to Jesus.

The wise men first went to Jerusalem, then Matthew 2:9 says "the star they had seen when it rose went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was". If the star was high, then heaven knows what speed it was going at and how they could tell exactly where it was over, or if the star was low then what horrendous effects it would have had on the neighbourhood. Although some people say that it was astrological signs, I don't think that Matthew 2 indicates that, and in various places the bible condemns astrologers.

Although Matthew 2:11 says "Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh", that doesn't necessarily mean that there were 3 of them, and some denominations say that there were 12 of them.

"We are three kings from the Orient" or "We three kings from the Orient exist", but "We three kings of Orient are" seems clumsy, even allowing for poetic licence.
Did they traverse fountains? A wise man wouldn't get his feet wet unnecessarily.
Jeff  Male  East Sussex
23-Dec-2014 11:13 Message #4539598
I remember from about 55 years ago in primary school, when I played a wise man I trod on my dressing gown and heard it rip slightly. A really wise man would have worn something shorter.

Many Western Christian denominations name the Magi as Melchior, Caspar and Balthazar, or slight variations of them, and consider them to be saints, but other denominations give them completely different names, such as Larvandad, Gushnasaph and Hormisdas.

Website by The Slaves of the Immaculate Heart of Mary has the following. It isn't in the bible and I wonder what evidence there is for it:-
"These Magi first saw the star which led them to Bethlehem on the previous March 25, the day, and at the moment, that Jesus was conceived in Mary’s womb. It took the Magi nine months and twelve days to reach Bethlehem, guided by the star. The star left them when they were in Jerusalem. But it shone again after the Magi left Jerusalem, and led them to the cave of Bethlehem. Our Lady let each of the Magi hold Jesus in his arms. They were given some of His baby clothes to bring back to the East by way of relics. The Magi returned to the East, to Persia and later were baptized there by Saint Thomas the Apostle, in the year 40. All three of the Magi were martyred for the Catholic Faith. Their names are now, and should always be called, Saint Gaspar, Saint Melchior and Saint Balthasar. The bodies of Saint Gaspar, Saint Melchior and Saint Balthasar were first brought to Constantinople, and then to Milan, and in the twelfth century they were placed in the Cathedral of Cologne, in Germany, where they are venerated with much love by the Christians who worship there."

It is true that Cologne cathedral has The Shrine of the Three Kings, claiming that it contains the bones of the 3 Magi. It is the biggest reliquary in the western world, and very elaborate.

Jeff  Male  East Sussex
23-Dec-2014 12:00 Message #4539608
It was empress Helena who about 327AD found the relics of the 3 kings, like she found many other relics such as parts of Jesus's cross, His tunic, and the rope binding Him to the cross. However much she paid for them (probably to crooks), the Church later reaped much more money than that from pilgrims viewing them.

I've just seen another reference to the Old Testament prophesying kings visiting baby Jesus:-
Psalms 68:29 (which is addressed to God) "Because of your temple at Jerusalem kings will bring you gifts."
But much of that psalm doesn't apply to Jesus.

Matthew 2:1-3 "After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi [or wise men] from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” When King Herod heard this he was disturbed, and all Jerusalem with him."
Why did the star lead the wise men to Jerusalem? Why did God allow Herod to hear the news?

In Matthew 2:12-16, the wise men disobeyed Herod's order to return to him, so "When Herod realized that he had been outwitted by the Magi, he was furious, and he gave orders to kill all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity who were two years old and under, in accordance with the time he had learned from the Magi."
Why did God arrange events for Herod to kill innocent babies?
Jeff  Male  East Sussex
29-Nov-2019 18:37 Message #4763754
A Chtistmas carol starts "Away in a manger, no crib for His bed".

But that is wrong, because apparently Jesus did have a crib. There is a structure of 5 fragile wooden slats of wood that many Catholics believe were part of Jesus's crib. (And even the qur'an 19:22-26, which says that Jesus was born in a "remote place" near a palm tree and stream, mentions a "cradle".)

About 640, as protection from the Muslim conquest, this "crib" was sent from Jerusalem to Pope Theodore I in Rome, and it then went into the Basilica of Mary Major (Santa Maria Maggiore) which was then renamed St. Mary of the Crib.

This week the Vatican in Rome sent this crib to near the Church of the Nativity in Jerusalem where Christians believe that Jesus was born.

It reminds me of a sketch by the brilliant John Finnimore which includes:-
Salesman: "I see. Sir, I wonder if you would care to step through here into my office."
Customer: "Not really."
Salesman: "I do think you’d find it worth your while sir. I have a very very special piece there."
Customer: "Pft. Alright. Better be good though."
Salesman: "Oh it is sir. Here we are. It’s this chair here."
Customer: "It doesn’t look like much to me."
Salesman: "Perhaps not. But you see sir, this chair, is an original Jesus."
Customer: "Jesus who?"
Salesman: "Christ, sir. The Messiah. Made by him, personally during his carpentry period."
Customer: "Jesus."
Salesman: "Yes sir."
Customer: "Well how can you tell?"
Salesman: "Well, you see here how the moulding of the arms has been done? With ineffable perfection? That’s classic Jesus."
Customer: "And how has it survived?"
Salesman: "Well sir! When the lamb of God makes a chair, it is of course the perfect expression of all that a chair could be. Including, durable. Oh and also... it swivels."
Customer: "It swivels?"
Salesman: "Look."
Customer: "But surely they didn’t have that kind of technology then!"
Salesman: "Well they didn’t! No sir. But all things are known to the Son of Man, including how to make a chair swivel. That’s also why the arms are made of polyvinylchloride."
Customer: "And you’re absolutely certain this is a genuine Jesus chair?"
Salesman: "Absolutely sir! The real give away is here; if you look on the back, you can see where he Tipp-Exed his initials."
Customer: "Oh yes!"
Salesman: "I do also have a couple of pieces by his father, if you’re interested."
Customer: "What, God?"
Salesman: "No sir, Joseph. The carpenter, rather than the deity."
Customer: "Right, no, no, no, I want the Jesus one."
Victoriana11  Female  Buckinghamshire
1-Dec-2019 15:53 Message #4763899
Geese only lay 40 eggs per year each - if you are lucky !

V lol.... x
Victoriana11  Female  Buckinghamshire
3-Dec-2019 13:46 Message #4764078
Goodness me Jeff, I am now exhausted, reading all that. I Hope you havent got RS in your wrists with all that typing & C/Ping.

V x
brisinger  Male  Lancashire
3-Dec-2019 18:49 Message #4764087
Message #4539293 Makes me wonder whether the discrepancies in date would align more with the Perihelion.
NoSaint  Female  Devon
4-Dec-2019 07:02 Message #4764106
I shall soon be out listening to carol singers in the evenings.

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