John Speller's Web Pages Sit Yow Merry, Gentlemen

John Speller's Web Pages - Christmas Carols
Sit Yow Merry, Gentlemen
This carol, which apparently originated in Cornwall, is the earliest known version of the well-known Christmas carol "God rest ye merry, gentlemen," and appears to date from about the middle of the seventeenth century. The manuscript states that it was to be sung to a tune called "Chestnut or Jack Dove's Figary," which is found in the First Edition of John Playford's English Dancing Master (1651). I have used an arrangement of this dance tune with accompaniment by Cecil Sharpe, but it is unfortunately not at all points entirely clear how the words were fitted to the tune.

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