Wednesday, 5 December 2018

December 5th and a Christmas Carol

One of the Christmas books I've collected over the years is this..............The Country Diary Christmas Book.

Published in 1993 after the success of The Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady and The Nature Notes of an Edwardian Lady, this book features some of the drawings from these books plus lots of other pictures and writings  from the Edwardian Era and earlier.

I thought it would be interesting to show a few pages from the book in my December posts

This page shows the hymn God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen with  a French Happy New Year postcard

The hymn is very old traditional, I found this about it

God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen was first published in 1833 when it appeared in "Christmas Carols Ancient and Modern," a collection of seasonal carols gathered by William B. Sandys. The lyrics of God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen are traditional olde English and are reputed to date back to the 15th century although the author is unknown.

It is believed that this particular carol was sung to the gentry by town watchmen who earned additional money during the Christmas season. God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen continues to be enjoyed. The lyrics to this simple carol are reputed to be one of the oldest carols.

The carol is referred to in Charles Dickens  'A Christmas Carol', 1843: "... at the first sound of 'God bless you, merry gentlemen! May nothing you dismay!', Scrooge seized the ruler with such energy of action that the singer fled in terror, leaving the keyhole to the fog and even more congenial frost." 

 Thank you for all the comments yesterday about the Crib displays.

And a special  PS to Elaine.......They are gorgeous, love them. Thank you so much.

Back Tomorrow


  1. God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen is one of my favourite carols.

  2. What a beautiful rendition of this hymn, which is my favourite. The first carol I've heard this year. Thank you so much for posting. As one, like you, who will spend Christmas with family, but without my husband for the first time, these words seem very apt. Many blessings, Sue.

    1. A different Christmas for sure but my grandchildren will bring lots of happiness as I hope your family do too.
      Someone (who didn't know me at all) asked if I would cancel Christmas! No way!

  3. It's a lovely tune and cheerful words - perfect for the season!

  4. Ah, my husband's favourite Christmas carol. This book looks right up my street so I've put it on my list of books to look out for. Thanks, Sue. x

  5. I think it would be lovely if we could just stick tothese old traditions - your page looks so inviting - instead of going overboard for all the rubbish these days.

  6. I used to live round the corner from Edith Holden's house, on Kineton Green Road in Solihull. When all the interest in her and the associated marketing stuff came out, it was quite common to walk home from school and see (mainly) American tourists standing outside the house taking photographs. I never ever saw anyone in the house though! Whatever time of day I went past, it was always empty but the house was lived in. Must remember to drive past it on way to pals tomorrow.

  7. A proper Christmas Carol. Lovely!

  8. Thanks for the book info , It looks a beautiful book , I have just ordered one of Ebay for my friend as a finishing chemo present as she loves Christmas xxx

  9. I love reading your posts and I am on the look out for the Chrustmas book for my daughter,
    Thank you Sue.
    Hazel c uk

  10. I think some shops have gone back to playing Carols here rather than the American Christmas songs - all for the better in my mind.

  11. Now I can't stop humming that tune. At least it is a good one. :)

  12. Well now I am singing "God Rest You Merry Gentleman" in my head.

    Thanks for sharing that bit of history with all of us.

    God bless.

  13. I have never come across this book before, I have the other two you mentioned and enjoy them immensely. Nice to learn a little more about "God rest you merry gentleman"

  14. I've not commented for a while, but that is a lovely post, Sue.
    Margaret P