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A FRENCH NOËL.

(TRANSLATED FROM GUI BARÔZAI.)

I hear along our street

Pass the minstrel throngs; Hark! they play so sweet, On their hautboys, Christmas songs !

Let us by the fire

Ever higher
Sing them till the night expire !

In December ring

Every day the chimes;
Loud the gleemen sing
In the streets their merry rhymes.

Let us by the fire, etc.

Shepherds at the grange,

Where the Babe was born, Sang, with many a change, Christmas carols until morn.

Let us by the fire, etc.

These good people sang

Songs devout and sweet;
While the rafters rang
There they stood with freezing feet.

Let us by the fire, etc.

A French Noël.

53

Nuns in frigid cells

At this holy tide For want of something else Christmas songs at times have tried.

Let us by the fire, etc.

Washerwomen old,

To the sound they beat,
Sing by rivers cold
With uncovered heads and feet.

Let us by the fire, etc.

Who by the fireside stands

Stamps his feet and sings ;
But he who blows his hands
Not so gay a carol brings.

Let us by the fire, etc.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.

5*

MASTERS, IN THIS HALL.

“To Bethlem did they go, the shepherds threo; To Bethlem did they go to see whe'r it were

so or no, Whether Christ were born or no

To set men free."

Masters, in this hall,

Hear ye news to-day
Brought over sea,
And ever I you pray.
Nowell! Nowell! Nowell! Nowell!

Sing we clear!
Holpen are all folk on earth,

Born is God's Son so dear.

Going over the hills,

Through the milk-white snow,
Heard I ewes bleat
While the winds did blow.

Nowell, etc.

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Masters, in this Hall.

55

No man spake more word
Than they had been asleep.

Nowell, etc.

Quoth I, " Fellows mine,

Why this guise sit ye? Making but dull cheer, Shepherds though ye be ?

Nowell, etc.

“Shepherds should of right

Leap, and dance, and sing;
Thus to see you sit
Is a right strange thing."

Nowell, etc.

Quoth these fellows three,

" To Bethlem town we go, To see a Mighty Lord Lie in manger low.”

Nowell, etc.

“How name ye this Lord,

Shepherds ?" then said I. “Very God," they said, “Come from Heaven high."

Nowell, etc.

Then to Bethl’em town

We went two and two,

And in a sorry place
Heard the oxen low.

Nowell, etc.

Therein did we seo

A sweet and goodly May,
And a fair old man;
Upon the straw she lay.

Nowell, etc.

And a little Child

On her arm had she; “ Wot

ye

who is this?”' Said the hinds to me.

Nowell, etc.

Ox and ass Him know,

Kneeling on their knee:
Wondrous joy had I
This little Babe to see.

Nowell, etc.

This is Christ the Lord :

Masters, be ye glad!
Christmas is come in,
And no folk should be sad.

Nowell, etc.
William Morris.

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