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Sing We Now of Christmas

Meter: Appears in 20 hymnals Topics: liturgical Songs of Response First Line: Sing we now of Christmas, Noel sing we here Refrain First Line: Sing we Noel, the King is born, Noel Lyrics: 1 Sing we now of Christmas, Noel, sing we here! Hear ... , Noel! Sing we now of Christmas, sing we now Noel! 2 ... Text Sources: Traditional French carol
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I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day

Author: Henry W. Longfellow Appears in 112 hymnals Topics: Christmas Used With Tune: [I heard the bells on Christmas day]

O little town of Bethlehem

Author: P. Brooks (1835-1893) Appears in 811 hymnals Topics: Christmas 1 The Incarnation; God, Saviour Born (Christmas Seasonal) Lyrics: ... us today! We hear the Christmas angels the great glad tidings ... Used With Tune: CHRISTMAS CAROL


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Meter: with refrain Appears in 187 hymnals Topics: Christmas Tune Sources: French carol Tune Key: F Major Incipit: 33355 43323 53213 Used With Text: Angels We Have Heard on High
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Composer: G. F. Handel Meter: Appears in 510 hymnals Topics: Christian Year Christmas; Christian Year Christmas Tune Sources: Harmonia Sacra, 1812 Tune Key: D Major Incipit: 34517 65123 34555 Used With Text: While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks


Composer: H. Walford Davies (1869-1941) Appears in 16 hymnals Topics: Christmas 1 The Incarnation; God, Saviour Born (Christmas Seasonal) Tune Key: F Major Incipit: 32313 23136 53213 Used With Text: O little town of Bethlehem


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Published text-tune combinations (hymns) from specific hymnals
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Merry Christmas Bells Are Ringing

Author: Mrs. S. K. Bourne Hymnal: Gloria Deo #695 (1901) Topics: Christmas Refrain First Line: Yes, the Christmas bells are ringing Lyrics: ... sons of men, be joyful, Christmas day has come again.” Refrain ... : Yes, the Christmas bells are ringing, Ringing out ... . Oh! how sweet the Christmas message With its gift of ... world again; Live the blessed Christmas story! “Peace on earth, ... Languages: English Tune Title: [Merry Christmas bells are ringing]

Tropical Christmas

Author: Daisy Myrie Hymnal: Sing a New Song #96 (1981) Topics: Seasonal and General Advent and Christmas First Line: When Christmas first came on this earth Refrain First Line: Sing christmas song, poinsettia red Lyrics: When Christmas first came on this ... Languages: English Tune Title: [When Christmas first came on this earth]
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Heaven's Christmas Tree

Author: Charles A. Tindley, 1851-1933 Hymnal: One Lord, One Faith, One Baptism #270 (2018) Meter: with refrain Topics: The Celebration of the Gospel Story Christmas; Christian Year Christmas First Line: I have heard of a tree, a great Christmas tree Refrain First Line: There is a package for me on that tree Lyrics: ... of a tree, a great Christmas tree, It was fixed in ... you and for me, A Christmas present for all. Refrain: There ... Scripture: Romans 3:24-25 Languages: English Tune Title: HEAVEN'S CHRISTMAS TREE


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Authors, composers, editors, etc.

George Frideric Handel

1685 - 1759 Person Name: G. F. Handel Topics: Christmas Composer of "[While shepherds watched their flocks by night]" in Triumphant Songs No.3 George Frideric Handel (b. Halle, Germany, 1685; d. London, England, 1759) became a musician and composer despite objections from his father, who wanted him to become a lawyer. Handel studied music with Zachau, organist at the Halle Cathedral, and became an accomplished violinist and keyboard performer. He traveled and studied in Italy for some time and then settled permanently in England in 1713. Although he wrote a large number of instrumental works, he is known mainly for his Italian operas, oratorios (including Messiah, 1741), various anthems for church and royal festivities, and organ concertos, which he interpolated into his oratorio performances. He composed only three hymn tunes, one of which (GOPSAL) still appears in some modern hymnals. A number of hymnal editors, including Lowell Mason, took themes from some of Handel's oratorios and turned them into hymn tunes; ANTIOCH is one example, long associated with “Joy to the World.” Bert Polman

John Wesley Work

1873 - 1925 Person Name: John W. Work, Jr., 1871-1925 Topics: Christmas; Christmas; Christmas Season Adapter of "Go Tell it on the Mountain" in Worship (3rd ed.) John W. Work, Jr. (b. Nashville, TN, 1872; d. Nashville, 1925), is well known for his pioneering studies of African American folk music and for his leadership in the performance of spirituals. He studied music at Fisk University in Nashville and classics at Harvard and then taught Latin, Greek, and history at Fisk from 1898 to 1923. Director of the Jubilee Singers at Fisk, Work also sang tenor in the Fisk Jubilee Quartet, which toured the country after 1909 and made commercial recordings. He was president of Roger Williams University in Nashville during the last two years of his life. Work and his brother Frederick Jerome Work (1879-1942) were devoted to collecting, arranging, and publishing African American slave songs and spirituals. They published two collections: New Jubilee Songs as Sung by the Fisk Jubilee Singers (1901) and Folk Songs of the American Negro (1907). Bert Polman

Joseph Haydn

1732 - 1809 Person Name: Franz Joseph Haydn, 1732-1809 Topics: Christmas Composer of "AUSTRIA" in Hymnal and Order of Service Franz Joseph Haydn (b. Rohrau, Austria, 1732; d. Vienna, Austria, 1809) Haydn's life was relatively uneventful, but his artistic legacy was truly astounding. He began his musical career as a choirboy in St. Stephen's Cathedral, Vienna, spent some years in that city making a precarious living as a music teacher and composer, and then served as music director for the Esterhazy family from 1761 to 1790. Haydn became a most productive and widely respected composer of symphonies, chamber music, and piano sonatas. In his retirement years he took two extended tours to England, which resulted in his "London" symphonies and (because of G. F. Handel's influence) in oratorios. Haydn's church music includes six great Masses and a few original hymn tunes. Hymnal editors have also arranged hymn tunes from various themes in Haydn's music. Bert Polman