Carol of the Bells

Carol of the Bells | Free Christmas Carols & Songs

Carol, Ukraine.

By Mykola Leontovich
Arranged by Peter Wilhousky
Copyright 1936, Carl Fischer, Llc

“Carol of the Bells” is a popular Christmas carol, composed by Mykola Leontovych with lyrics by Peter J. Wilhousky. The song is based on a folk chant known in Ukrainian as “Shchedryk”.

It was associated with the coming New Year which, in pre-Christian Ukraine, was originally celebrated with the coming of spring in April.


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To download your free mp3 of “Carol of the Bells”, click (or tap, on mobile devices) on the following link.

“Carol of the Bells” (instrumental, 1:40 – 3/4 – 161 bpm)

“Carol of the Bells (extended)” (instrumental, 1:50 – 3/4 – 161 bpm)

This composition is copyrighted | Licensing by Singing Bell is not available



Lyrics (English)

Hark how the bells,
sweet silver bells,
all seem to say,
throw cares away

Christmas is here,
bringing good cheer,
to young and old,
meek and the bold,

Ding dong ding dong
that is their song
with joyful ring
all caroling

One seems to hear
words of good cheer
from everywhere
filling the air

Oh how they pound,
raising the sound,
o”er hill and dale,
telling their tale,

Gaily they ring
while people sing
songs of good cheer,
Christmas is here,

Merry, merry, merry, merry Christmas,
Merry, merry, merry, merry Christmas,
On on they send,
on without end,
their joyful tone
to every home
Dong Ding dong ding… dong! Dong!

Click here for more free printable Christmas lyrics.


Music Score


Click here for more free Christmas sheet music.


Free Printable PDF with lyrics and music sheet


To download a ready-to-print PDF of “Carol of the Bells” 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…”.

“Carol of the Bells” free PDF download – Singing Bell


Teaching ideas

How many times is the motif “fa mi-fa re” heard in the first part of the song? Or, else, how many same meters are repeated?

Find four bell-like sounding instruments, share them to four children, and play in this order: (don’t forget to sing meanwhile!)

For the first 4 meters, play the first sound (e.x. a little bell) on the first beat of every meter (4 times).

At the next 4 meters, in the same way, add the second sound (e.x. a triangle), while the previous continues to play.

Go on for the next 4 meters with the third sound (e.x. a glockenspiel A or D note) added to the two previous  and add the fourth sound (e.x. a jingle-bell – well known as sleigh bells- or little cymbals) at the last 4 meters.
Keep this 4 bells playing for the next 4 meters (“Oh how they pound/raising the sound/o”er hill and dale/telling their tale”) and stop suddenly at the next melody (“Gaily they ring/while people sing/songs of good cheer/Christmas is here/Merry, merry, merry…”) giving the lyrics the first role.


Song History

With the introduction of Christianity to Ukraine, and the adoption of the Julian calendar, the celebration of the New Year was moved from April to January, and the holiday with which the chant was originally associated became the Feast of Epiphany

The original Ukrainian text tells the tale of a swallow flying into a household to proclaim the plentiful and bountiful year that the family will have. The title is derived from the Ukrainian word for “bountiful”. The period for the birth of animals and the return of swallows to Ukraine, however, does not correspond to the current calendar season of winter.It was introduced to Western audiences by the Ukrainian National Chorus during its concert tour of Europe and the Americas, where it premiered in the United States on October 5, 1921 at Carnegie Hall. A copyrighted English text was created by Peter Wilhousky in the 1930s, and since then it has been performed and sung during the Christmas season.


Carol of the Bells | Free Christmas Carols & Songs
Carol of the Bells


Carol of the Bells | Free Christmas Carols & Songs
Carol of the Bells


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This Post Has One Comment

  1. emblone

    Excellent Website. I had ever visit.God Bless. 

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