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The First Noel the Angel Did Say

Representative Text

1 The first Noel the angel did say
was to certain poor shepherds in fields as they lay;
in fields where they lay keeping their sheep,
on a cold winter's night that was so deep.

Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel,
born is the King of Israel.

2 They looked up and saw a star
shining in the east, beyond them far;
and to the earth it gave great light,
and so it continued both day and night. [Refrain]

3 And by the light of that same star
three Wise Men came from country far;
to seek for a king was their intent,
and to follow the star wherever it went. [Refrain]

4 This star drew nigh to the northwest,
o'er Bethlehem it took its rest;
and there it did both stop and stay,
right over the place where Jesus lay. [Refrain]

5 Then entered in those Wise Men three,
full reverently upon the knee,
and offered there, in his presence,
their gold and myrrh and frankincense. [Refrain]

The United Methodist Hymnal, 1989

Author: Anonymous

In some hymnals, the editors noted that a hymn's author is unknown to them, and so this artificial "person" entry is used to reflect that fact. Obviously, the hymns attributed to "Author Unknown" "Unknown" or "Anonymous" could have been written by many people over a span of many centuries. Go to person page >


The first Noel the angel did say. [Christmas.] This is given in Davis Gilbert's Ancient Christmas Carols, 1823, No. ix.; in the Christmas Carols of W. Sandys, 1833, p. 74; Tozer's Catholic Hymns, 1898, and others. --John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology, New Supplement (1907)



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Baptist Hymnal 1991 #85
  • Bulletin Score (PDF)
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The Cyber Hymnal #1642
  • Adobe Acrobat image (PDF)
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Timeless Truths #1
  • The_First_Noel.pdf (PDF)
  • The_First_Noel.xml (XML)
The United Methodist Hymnal #245
  • Bulletin Score (melody only) (PDF)
  • Bulletin Score (PDF)
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Worship and Rejoice #229


Instances (1 - 64 of 64)

Anglican Hymns Old and New (Rev. and Enl.) #705

Christmas Favorites #8

Church Hymnal, Fifth Edition #198

Hymnal #199

Hymns and Psalms #119

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Hymns of Faith #120

Hymns of the Saints #246

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Praise! Our Songs and Hymns #188

Seventh-day Adventist Hymnal #118

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Sing Joyfully #205

Soul-stirring Songs & Hymns (Rev. ed.) #421

The Christian Life Hymnal #97


The Cyber Hymnal #1642

The Family Hymnal #35

The New National Baptist Hymnal #63


The Song Book of the Salvation Army #90

The United Methodist Hymnal Music Supplement #328

The United Methodist Hymnal Music Supplement #329

The United Methodist Hymnal Music Supplement #330


Worship in Song #68

生命聖詩 - Hymns of Life, 1986 #90


Timeless Truths #1

Church Family Worship #109

Complete Mission Praise #644

Hymns Old and New #477


Chalice Hymnal #151


Hymnal 1982 #109

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The New Century Hymnal #139

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The United Methodist Hymnal #245

Ambassador Hymnal #33


Ancient and Modern #86

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Baptist Hymnal 1991 #85


Catholic Book of Worship III #344

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Church Hymnary (4th ed.) #323

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Complete Anglican Hymns Old and New #641

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Evangelical Lutheran Worship #300

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Gather (3rd ed.) #460

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Gather Comprehensive #377

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Gather Comprehensive, Second Edition #388

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Glory to God #147

Hymns for Today's Church (2nd ed.) #93

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Hymns to the Living God #122

Rejoice Hymns #204

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The New English Hymnal #36

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The Worshiping Church #162


Together in Song #301

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Worship (3rd ed.) #408

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Worship and Rejoice #229


Baptist Hymnal 2008 #180

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The Celebration Hymnal #265

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The Hymnal for Worship and Celebration #136

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Celebrating Grace Hymnal #124


Common Praise (1998) #139


Hymns for a Pilgrim People #108


Lead Me, Guide Me (2nd ed.) #276

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Moravian Book of Worship #290

Oramos Cantando = We Pray In Song #391

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Presbyterian Hymnal #56

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Rejoice in the Lord #223


Small Church Music #248

The Covenant Hymnal #167

Voices United #90


Voices United #91


Worship (4th ed.) #449

Include 287 pre-1979 instances
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