Songs for the New Year

That one is particularly beautiful. A good song to start the night.

Of course, for many this will be the last night of Christmas celebrations.

By the end of the night, we have returned to the first song, but with different words. Not 'new' words, for these are quite old.

The full lyrics:
The old year now away is fled,
The new year it is entered;
Then let us all our sins down tread,
And joyfully all appear.
Let's merry be this holiday,
And let us run with sport and play,
Hang1 sorrow, let's cast care away
God send us a merry new year!

For Christ's circumcision this day we keep,
Who for our sins did often weep;
His hands and feet were wounded deep,
And his blessed side, with a spear.
His head they crowned then with thorn,
And at him they did laugh and scorn,
Who for to save our souls was born;
God send us a happy New Year!

And now with New-Year's gifts each friend
Unto each other they do send;
God grant we may our lives amend,
And that truth may now appear.
Now like the snake cast off your skin
Of evil thoughts and wicked sin,
And to amend this new year begin:
God send us a merry new year!

And now let all the company
In friendly manner all agree,
For we are here welcome all may see
Unto this jolly good cheer.
I thank my master and my dame,
The which are founders of the same,
To eat, to drink now is no shame:
God send us a happy new year!

Come lads and lasses every one,
Jack, Tom, Dick, Bess, Mary and Joan,
Let's cut the meat unto the bone,
For welcome you need not fear.
And here for good liquor you shall not lack,
It will whet my brains and strengthen my back;
This jolly good cheer it must go to wrack:
God send us a happy new year!

Come, give's more liquor when I do call,
I'll drink to each one in this hall,
I hope that so loud I must not bawl,
So unto me lend an ear.
Good fortune to my master send,
And to our dame which is our friend,
Lord bless us all, and so I end:
God send us a happy new year!
There's a very nice, appropriately rowdy version on this album.


Cass said...

Happy New Year to you, Grim, and to everyone else in the Hall.

Anonymous said...

Happy New year. And for some Christmas ends on January 6th, for (as the song says), "three great wonders fell on this day:/ A Star shone down where the infant lay,/ Water made wine in Galilee,/ and Christ baptized in the Jordan."


Tom said...

Happy New Year all!

Grim said...


That's right -- the traditional end of the "12 Days of Christmas" is on the 6th. That's what would have made sense to the Medievals.

America doesn't seem to have a standard, even culturally. I read a column on 26 December about how it was time to get back to work now that Christmas was over. But others make a kind of festive bridge from Christmas to New Year's, in which they do only the necessary work while making time for family and friends (and, sometimes, church). And then of course there are those who remember the old traditions; oddly including universities, whose winter break tends to extend until about 6 January.