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Lyrics and Information

The First Noel

Traditional English carol as early as 13th Century
Tune: THE FIRST NOEL, Traditional melody from W. Sandy's "Christmas Carols," 1833
Key signature: D major (2 sharps)
Time signature: 3/4
Meter: Irregular
Public Domain
Organ Performance at Hymns Without Words
1. The first Noel the angel did say Was to certain poor shepherds in fields as they lay; In fields where they lay keeping their sheep, On a cold winter’s night that was so deep.
Refrain: Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel! Born is the King of Israel.
2. They looked up and saw a star Shining in the east, beyond them far; And to the earth it gave great light, And so it continued both day and night.
3. And by the light of that same star, Three wisemen came from country far; To seek for king was their intent, And follow the star wherever it went.
4. This star drew nigh to the northwest, O’er Bethlehem it took its rest; And there it did both stop and stay Right over the place where Jesus lay.
5. Then entered in those wisemen three, Full rev’rently upon their knee, And offered there in His presence Their gold and myrrh and frankincense.
6. Then let us all with one accord Sing praises to our heav'nly Lord, That hath made heav'n and earth of naught, And with His blood mankind hath bought.
Additional stanzas:
Then did they know assuredly Within that house the King did lie; One entered it them for to see, And found the Babe in poverty.
Between an ox stall and an ass, This Child truly there He was; For want of clothing they did Him lay All in a manger, among the hay.
If we in our time shall do well, We shall be free from death and hell; For God hath prepared for us all A resting place in general.