English Traditional

Lyrics

Verse 1

We wish you a Merry Christmas (x3)
and a Happy New Year.

REFRAIN
Good tidings we bring to you and your kin
We wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Verse 2
Now bring us some figgy pudding (x3)
and bring some out here.

Repeat REFRAIN

Verse 3
For we all like figgy pudding (x3)
so bring some out here.

Repeat REFRAIN

Verse 4
And we won’t go until we’ve got some (x3)
so bring some out here.

Repeat REFRAIN

Background

“We Wish You A Merry Christmas” is a popular secular sixteenth-century English carol from the West Country of England. The origin of this Christmas carol lies in the English tradition where wealthy people of the community gave Christmas treats to the carolers on Christmas Eve, such as ‘figgy puddings’ that were very much like modern day Christmas puddings. It is one of the few English traditional carols that makes mention of the New Year celebration.

Performances

This song was the title track of Bing Crosby’s 1962 Christmas album, although he changed the lyric to “I Wish You A Merry Christmas”:

Here is a recording by vocal group The Weavers, who added some nice extra sections to the song: