Monday, December 7, 2015

The stories behind Christmas carols-part 1

The stories behind Christmas carols-part 1

Christmas carol have become an integral part of christmas celebration all around the world.
Have you ever wondered how these carols came about ,here is a brief history of few of the famous carols.

Silent Night
This hugely popular carol came about in 1818 just a few days before Christmas, after an Austrian church mouse munched his way through the bellows of an organ. The organist, Franz Gruber, went to see his priest, Joseph Mohr, to express his concern that there would be no music for Christmas. Equally concerned, Father Joseph wrote a new carol - not requiring an organ - in haste, while Gruber composed the tune. It was played for the first time on guitar at Midnight Mass.

O Come, All Ye Faithful
Another of the most loved of Christmas hymns started out as 'Adeste Fideles', written by John Francis Wade, an Englishman who during the 1700s left England to join a Roman Catholic community in France. He paid his way by teaching music to youngsters and composing and selling pieces of music. It wasn’t until about 100 years later that another Englishman, Fred Oakley gave us the version we know and love today.

The First Noel (First Nowell)
After the first appearance of carols in the Middle Ages the Reformation took hold and the popularity of the seasonal songs took a downward turn. It wasn’t really until the Victorian era when they started to enjoy a resurgence. 'The First Nowell' - or 'First Noel' as it is normally known today - was originally a traditional Cornish Carol. It was first published in a collection called Xmas Carols Ancient and Modern in 1833 by a solicitor William Sandys

Joy to the World
We have Handel to thank in part for this Christmas favourite as it was his original melody from Messiah, which composer Lowell Mason used. The words came from Isaac Watts, an English theologian. He returned home after attending church one day and told his father that he hadn’t been particularly inspired by the music he’d heard during the service and that he thought he could do a better job. He was right

The Twelve Days of Christmas
Dating back to the late 18th century, this popular seasonal song was reportedly used to help youngsters learn about their faith with each gift having a significant meaning – for example, the partridge represents Christ; the calling birds, the four Gospels; the Lords are the Ten Commandments – and so on. There’s a rather different version in the west of France. It’s all about food! Among the delicacies sung about are four pigs trotters, seven spitted rabbits, eight plates of salad and ten full casks

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