The rising of the sun and the running of the deer,
The playing of the merry organ, sweet singing in the choir.
Chorus from traditional carol The Holly and the Ivy, from a broadside of about 1710 and therefore at least a little older than that. The words to the verses confirm that carols aren’t just for midwinter but also for seasons such as Lent and Easter.
Used for both verse and chorus, the simple but effective tune in the Ionian or C mode allows both for unison playing (recorders, carillon) as well as more interesting harmonisation or counterpoint. The wreath, with its eye catching centre roundel, is from a door in Crickhowell, Powys, and the doorknocker confirms that the door is in Wales.
Love and joy come to you, as the wassail song has it, and thank you all for another year of fascinating dialogues! As the sun gradually makes its presence felt after the winter solstice I hope and wish that 2016 brings you all that you hope for.