|Arranger:||Ralph Vaughan Williams|
|Incipit:||51112 32345 34312|
|Source:||English Traditional Melody|
FOREST GREEN is an English folk tune associated with the ballad "The Ploughboy's Dream." Ralph Vaughan Williams (PHH 316) turned FOREST GREEN into a hymn tune for The English Hymnal (1906), using it as a setting for "O Little Town of Bethlehem."
Shaped in rounded bar form (AABA), FOREST GREEN has the cheerful characteristics of folk tunes. Those characteristics help to support the humanness of this text: We are to be the children (folk) of God! Sing in unison or in harmony, but given the tune's many eighth notes, do not rush. Congregations used to certain rhythmic patterns in hymn tunes will be challenged by the new rhythms at the transition from line 3 to line 4; accompanists should give leadership there.
--Psalter Hymnal Handbook, 1988