Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Meanind behind the carols #3

The First Noel (Nowell)
This French (or English) Carol is one of the oldest that we still sing, dating back to the 13th or 14th century when 'miracle plays' were a popular way to spread the gospel. The carol no doubt changed quite a bit as the years went by since it was not published until 1833 in a collection by William Sandys. "Noel" is the French word for Christmas, derived from the Latin word for birthday so it reminds us that Christmas is the first birthday of Jesus. With the 6 verses telling as much of the story as is possible to fit into one carol it's a classic for Christmas day.


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