Cherry Tree Carol

Just as “D’où viens–tu, bergère?” found a new home and a new tune in Canada, so one of the most famous English carols took a new form on this continent. In England the story of “The Cherry Tree Carol,” which is based on a passage in the Gospel of Pseudo–Matthew, dates back to the Coventry Miracle Plays.

— E. F. Fowke & R. Johnston, Folk Songs of Canada. Waterloo: Waterloo Music Co., 1954.

Cherry Tree Carol

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“The birth day shall be on that old Christmas night

    When the angels in the glory rejoice at the sight.”

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Oh, Mary walked in the garden just like a little child

    Saying, “Give me some cherries for I am beguiled.”

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Then Joseph said to Mary, “I give thee no cherries.

    Let the man give you cherries who did you beguile.”

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Then the tree spoke unto her and it began to bow,

    Saying, “Mary, gather cherries from the uttermost bough.”

Cherry Tree Carol