Good King Wenceslas

Good-King-Wenceslas-intro

Carol, England (UK).

“Good King Wenceslas” is a popular Christmas carol that tells a story of Good King Wenceslas braving harsh winter weather to give alms to a poor peasant on the Feast of Stephen (the second day of Christmas, December 26). During the journey, his page is about to give up the struggle against the cold weather, but is enabled to continue by following the king’s footprints, step for step, through the deep snow. The legend is based on the life of the historical Saint Wenceslaus I, Duke of Bohemia or Svatý Václav in Czech (907–935). Click here to scroll down to a more detailed song history

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“Good King Wenceslas” (instrumental, 2:46 – 4/4 – 89.5 bpm)


 

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To download your free midi file of “Good King Wenceslas, right click on the following link, then choose “Save link as..”

“Good King Wenceslas” – free midi file download


“Good King Wenceslas” lyrics

1. Good King Wenceslas looked out
on the feast of Stephen,
when the snow lay round about,
deep and crisp and even.
Brightly shone the moon that night,
though the frost was cruel,
when a poor man came in sight,
gathering winter fuel.

2. Hither, page, and stand by me.
If thou know it telling:
yonder peasant, who is he?
Where and what his dwelling?
Sire, he lives a good league hence,
underneath the mountain,
right against the forest fence
by Saint Agnes fountain.

3. Bring me meat, and bring me wine.
Bring me pine logs hither.
Thou and I will see him dine
when we bear the thither.
Page and monarch, forth they went,
forth they went together
through the rude wind’s wild lament
and the bitter weather.

4. Sire, the night is darker now,
and the wind blows stronger.
Fails my heart, I know not how.
I can go no longer.
Ark my footsteps my good page,
tread thou in them boldly:
Thou shalt find the winter’s rage
freeze thy blood less coldly.

5. In his master’s step he trod,
where the snow lay dented.
Heat was in the very sod
which the saint had printed.
Therefore, Christian men, be sure,
wealth or rank possessing,
ye who now will bless the poor
shall yourselves find blessing

 

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“Good King Wenceslas” Music Score with chords in G

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Good King Wenceslas_Singing Bell

“Good King Wenceslas” Music Score with chords in F

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Good King Wenceslas_F_Singing Bell


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To download a ready-to-print PDF of “Good King Wenceslas” for music activities with a music sheet, lyrics and a colouring sheet for kids, right click (or tap and hold, on mobile devices) on the following link, then choose “Save link as…”.

“Good King Wenceslas” free PDF download – Singing Bell


“Good King Wenceslas” Karaoke Video


 

“Good King Wenceslas” Teaching ideas:

Let’ s sing the drone. “Drone” is a note (sometimes two), that remains unchanged, accompanying the melody.

The song “Good King Wenceslas” can be sung accompanied by a drone that we can sing or play on an instrument.

Try listening to the instrumental version that singing-bell proposes, and keep the first note (G) throughout the whole song.

You can sing with children at low voice, preferably with the technique bouche fermée. It will be easier if you play this note on an instrument while singing.

You can listen to other pieces of music with bagpipes or hurdy-gurdy and recognize the sound of drone, even try to spot and sing it with bouche fermée.


 

“Good King Wenceslas” Song History:

In 1853, English hymnwriter John Mason Neale wrote the “Wenceslas” lyrics, in collaboration with his music editor Thomas Helmore, and the carol first appeared in Carols for Christmas-Tide, 1853. Neale’s lyrics were set to a tune based on a 13th-century spring carol “Tempus adest floridum” (“The time is near for flowering”) first published in the 1582 Finnish song collection Piae Cantiones.

Good-King-Wenceslas-Singing

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Singing Bell is a comprehensive collection of Christmas Carols and Children's songs.

It was created to provide teaching material to anyone giving music lessons to children or adults, that is music teachers and parents. It was also conceived for anyone who would like to live the Christmas spirit or the spirit of childhood.

Singing Bell offers free nursery rhymes and other free songs for children from all over the globe, as well as nursery rhyme lyrics. Popular songs like "London Bridge is falling down", "Old MacDonald had a farm", "Rain, rain, go away", "Itsy-Bitsy spider" and, of course, "The Wheels on the bus". Great hits also include "La Cucaracha" (with original English lyrics for children), "Auld Lang Syne" and "Mexican Hat Dance" (also with original English lyrics for kids).

Then again, especially for our babies, you can find and download our free lullabies like "Twinkle, twinkle little star", "Rock-a-bye baby", "Brahms Lullaby", and the lovely French "Fais dodo".

Its Christmas music section includes popular carols from Europe, like Britain's "We wish you a Merry Christmas" and "Deck the halls", "Petit Papa Noel" from France, Italy's "Tu scendi dalle stelle" and Spanish carols like "Fum Fum Fum" and "Los peces en el rio".

It also makes a collection of carols from North America ("Jingle Bells", "Santa Claus is coming to town"), but also popular South American carols like "Huachi Torito". Even more, it includes famous Christmas songs like "Rudolph, the red-nosed reindeer", "White Christmas", and many others.

The musical piece presented above is titled "Good King Wenceslas" and is one of Singing Bell's Christmas Carols and Songs.

All songs are offered for free mp3 download in their instrumental version. You can also download a free midi file for use in music programming or scoring, their music score in jpg, their lyrics and teaching ideas for singing in class or in a choir. The very same material might also be used simply as a karaoke version where anyone can sing along these Christmas Carols and children songs.

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