And all the bells on earth shall ring

Merry Christmas.

Here we have a traditional English Christmas carol. A variant of the tune “Greensleeves,” the earliest printed version of “I Saw Three Ships” dates back to the 17th Century.

Although the lyrics mention the ships sailing into Bethlehem, the nearest body of water is the Dead Sea about 20 miles away (and there was never much shipping there either).

The reference probably originates with three ships that bore the purported relics of the Biblical Magi to Cologne Cathedral in the 12th Century.  Founded in San Francisco (circa 1978) and often referred to as an “Orchestra of Voices,”

Chanticleer has developed a major reputation for its interpretations of Renaissance music. The ensemble was named for the “clear singing rooster” in Chaucer’s “Canterbury Tales”.

 LISTEN TO TODAY’S SELECTION – Christmas Day

I Saw Three Ships

I saw three ships come sailing in

On Christmas day, on Christmas day

I saw three ships come sailing in

On Christmas day in the morning.

And what was in those ships all three?

On Christmas day, on Christmas day

And what was in those ships all three?

On Christmas day in the morning.

 Our Savior, Christ, and His Lady,

On Christmas day, on Christmas day

Our Savior, Christ, and His Lady,

On Christmas day in the morning.

Pray, whither sailed those ships all three?

On Christmas day, on Christmas day

Pray, whither sailed those ships all three?

On Christmas day in the morning.

O, they sailed to Bethlehem,

On Christmas day, on Christmas day

O, they sailed to Bethlehem,

On Christmas day in the morning.

And all the bells on earth shall ring,

On Christmas day, on Christmas day

And all the bells on earth shall ring,

On Christmas day in the morning.

And all the angels in Heaven shall sing,

On Christmas day, on Christmas day

And all the angels in Heaven shall sing,

On Christmas day in the morning.

And all the souls on earth shall sing,

On Christmas day, on Christmas day

And all the souls on earth shall sing,

On Christmas day in the morning.

Then let us all rejoice amain,

On Christmas day, on Christmas day

Then let us all rejoice amain,

On Christmas day in the morning.

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