John Heaton (jheaton) wrote,
John Heaton

  • Music:

Advent 2008: In the Bleak Midwinter

One of my favorite traditional Christmas carols is "In the Bleak Midwinter." The text was written by Christina Rossetti in the latter half of the 19th century, though it was not published (under the name "A Christmas Carol") until 1904. It appeared in the seminal 1906 edition of The English Hymnal, set to a tune by Gustav Holst. It was there it became known as "In the Bleak Midwinter," as all the hymns therein were referred to by their first lines. My favorite part? The last verse, of course:

     What can I give Him, poor as I am?
     If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb;
     If I were a Wise Man, I would do my part;
     Yet what I can I give Him: give my heart.

In the Bleak Midwinter is also the name of the first book in Julia Spencer-Fleming's Rev. Claire Fergusson/Russ Van Alstyne series of mysteries, which I recommend highly.

St. Paul's Cathedral Choir - In the Bleak Midwinter (MP3, 5.3MB)

Previous Advent posts:

2003: A Christmas Carol
2004: Christmas Morning
2005: Greetings to one and all
2006: Rock of Ages
2007: Angel
Tags: advent: 2008, music

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