Upload

Loading icon Loading...

This video is unavailable.

Bing Crosby & The Andrew Sisters - 12 Days Of Christmas (Decca Records 1951)

Sign in to YouTube

Sign in with your Google Account (YouTube, Google+, Gmail, Orkut, Picasa, or Chrome) to like ChristmasTimeTV's video.

Sign in to YouTube

Sign in with your Google Account (YouTube, Google+, Gmail, Orkut, Picasa, or Chrome) to dislike ChristmasTimeTV's video.

Sign in to YouTube

Sign in with your Google Account (YouTube, Google+, Gmail, Orkut, Picasa, or Chrome) to add ChristmasTimeTV's video to your playlist.

Uploaded on Oct 27, 2010

"The Twelve Days of Christmas" is an English Christmas carol that enumerates a series of increasingly grand gifts given on each of the twelve days of Christmas. Although first published in England in 1780, textual evidence may indicate the song is French in origin. The twelve days in the song are the twelve days starting Christmas day, or in some traditions, the day after Christmas (December 26) (Boxing Day or St. Stephen's Day, as being the feast day of St. Stephen Protomartyr) to the day before Epiphany, or the Feast of the Epiphany (January 6, or the Twelfth Day). Twelfth Night is defined by the Oxford English Dictionary as "the evening of the fifth of January, preceding Twelfth Day, the eve of the Epiphany, formerly the last day of the Christmas festivities and observed as a time of merrymaking."

Although the specific origins of the chant are not known, it possibly began as a Twelfth Night "memories-and-forfeits" game, in which a leader recited a verse, each of the players repeated the verse, the leader added another verse, and so on until one of the players made a mistake, with the player who erred having to pay a penalty, such as offering up a kiss or a sweet. This is how the game is offered up in its earliest known printed version, in the children's book Mirth without Mischief (c. 1780) published in England, which 100 years later Lady Gomme, a collector of folktales and rhymes, described playing every Twelfth Day night before eating mince pies and twelfth cake. The song apparently is older than the printed version, though it is not known how much older. Textual evidence indicates that the song was not English in origin, but French, though it is considered an English carol. Three French versions of the song are known. If the "partridge in a pear tree" of the English version is to be taken literally, then it seems as if the chant comes from France, since the red-legged (or French) partridge, which perches in trees more frequently than the native common (or grey) partridge, was not successfully introduced into England until about 1770.

The song was imported to the United States in 1910 by Emily Brown, of the Downer Teacher's College in Milwaukee, WI, who had encountered the song in an English music store sometime before.

The earliest well-known version of the music of the song was recorded by English scholar James O. Halliwell in 1842, and he published a version in 4th edition The Nursery Rhymes of England (1846), collected principally from 'oral tradition'. In the early 20th century, English composer Frederic Austin wrote an arrangement in which he added his melody from "Five gold rings" onwards, which has since become standard.

On the first day of Christmas my true love sent to me:
A Partridge in a Pear Tree

On the second day of Christmas my true love sent to me:
2 Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree

On the third day of Christmas my true love sent to me:
3 French Hens, 2 Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree

On the fourth day of Christmas my true love sent to me:
4 Calling Birds, 3 French Hens, 2 Turtle Doves,
and a Partridge in a Pear Tree

On the fifth day of Christmas my true love sent to me:
5 Golden Rings, 4 Calling Birds, 3 French Hens, 2 Turtle Doves,
and a Partridge in a Pear Tree

On the sixth day of Christmas my true love sent to me:
6 Geese a Laying, 5 Golden Rings, 4 Calling Birds, 3 French Hens,
2 Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree

On the seventh day of Christmas my true love sent to me:
7 Swans a Swimming, 6 Geese a Laying, 5 Golden Rings,
4 Calling Birds, 3 French Hens, 2 Turtle Doves,
and a Partridge in a Pear Tree

On the eighth day of Christmas my true love sent to me:
8 Maids a Milking, 7 Swans a Swimming, 6 Geese a Laying,
5 Golden Rings, 4 Calling Birds, 3 French Hens, 2 Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree

On the ninth day of Christmas my true love sent to me:
9 Ladies Dancing, 8 Maids a Milking, 7 Swans a Swimming,
6 Geese a Laying, 5 Golden Rings, 4 Calling Birds, 3 French Hens,
2 Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree

On the tenth day of Christmas my true love sent to me:
10 Lords a Leaping, 9 Ladies Dancing, 8 Maids a Milking,
7 Swans a Swimming, 6 Geese a Laying, 5 Golden Rings,
4 Calling Birds, 3 French Hens, 2 Turtle Doves,
and a Partridge in a Pear Tree

On the eleventh day of Christmas my true love sent to me:
11 Pipers Piping, 10 Lords a Leaping, 9 Ladies Dancing,
8 Maids a Milking, 7 Swans a Swimming, 6 Geese a Laying,
5 Golden Rings, 4 Calling Birds, 3 French Hens, 2 Turtle Doves,
and a Partridge in a Pear Tree

On the twelfth day of Christmas my true love sent to me:
12 Drummers Drumming, 11 Pipers Piping, 10 Lords a Leaping,
9 Ladies Dancing, 8 Maids a Milking, 7 Swans a Swimming,
6 Geese a Laying, 5 Golden Rings, 4 Calling Birds, 3 French Hens,
2 Turtle Doves, and a Partridge in a Pear Tree

Loading icon Loading...

Loading icon Loading...

Loading icon Loading...

Loading icon Loading...

Ratings have been disabled for this video.
Rating is available when the video has been rented.
This feature is not available right now. Please try again later.

Loading icon Loading...

Advertisement
Loading...
Working...
to add this to Watch Later

Add to