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Hail! Smiling Morn

[ Roud 1346 ; Ballad Index WT306H ; Bodleian Roud 1346 ; Wiltshire 329 ; Reginald Spofforth (1769-1827)]

The Sheffield Book of Village Carols The Derbyshire Book of Village Carols

Bill Leader recorded carollers at The Fountain, Ingbirchworth, on 16 December 1973 singing Hail! Smiling Morn. This recording was included in 1974 on the Leader album of a Christmas singing tradition recorded in South Yorkshire pubs, A People's Carol. The Fountain Carollers from Inglebirchworth also sang Hail! Smiling Morn at Grenoside Cummunity Centre on 30 November 1996, which was released in 1998 on the Village Carols CD A Festival of Village Carols 1996. A third recording from The Fountain in 2004 was included in 2017 on the Village Carols CD of songs from the Festival of Village Carols 2002-2014, The Theme, the Song, the Joy.

The Little John Singers from Hathersage sang Hail! Smiling Morn in 1992, which was first released on a Village Carols cassette, and was included in 1999 on the Smithsonian Folkways anthology of traditional Christmas carolling from the Southern Pennines, English Village Carols.

Ian Russell recorded carollers at the Royal Hotel, Dungworth, on 3 December 1995 singing Hail! Smiling Morn. This recording was released in 1996 on the Village Carols CD Hark, Hark! What News.

Nowell Sing We Clear sang Hail Smiling Morn! in 1995 as the title track of their CD Hail Smiling Morn!. They noted:

Hail, Smiling Morn!, Old Foster, and Jacob's Well are from the Yorkshire pub Christmas singing traditions found in several parts of the city of Sheffield. Our versions are taken from The Joy of Christmas: Words & Music of Traditional & Local Carols, compiled and presented by Worrall Male Voice Choir, privately published, ca. 1980.

BACCApella, the singers of the BACCApipes Folk Club, Keighley, sang Hail! Smiling Morn in 1999 on their carols CD The Haworth Set.

The Millen Family sang Hail! Smiling Morn on their 2001 CD Down Yonder Green Lane.

Coope Boyes & Simpson, Fi Fraser, Jo Freya, and Georgina Boyes sang Hail! Smiling Morn in 2003 on their No Masters CD of regional and historical carols, Fire and Sleet and Candlelight.

Lady Maisery and Jimmy Aldridge & Sid Goldsmith sang Hail! Smiling Morn, “a Yorkshire pub carol to banish the darkness”, on their 2019 winter album Awake, Arise. This video shows them at Downend Folk Club in Christ Church, Downend, on 21 December 2018:

Melrose Quartet sang Hail! Smiling Morn, “as sung (approximately) at The Royal, Dungworth”, on their 2019 CD The Rudolph Variations. This video was filmed and edited by Elly Lucas:

Lyrics

Lady Maisery and Jimmy Aldridge & Sid Goldsmith sing Hail! Smiling Morn

Hail! smiling morn, smiling morn,
That tips the hills with gold, that tips the hills with gold,
At whose rosy fingers open wide the gates of heaven, the gates of heaven,
At whose rosy fingers open wide the gates of heaven.

All the green fields that natures doth unfold,
All the green fields that natures doth unfold.
At whose bright presence darkness flies away, flies away, flies away,
Darkness flies away, darkness flies away,
At whose bright presence darkness flies away, flies away, flies away,
Darkness flies away, darkness flies away,
Hail! Hail! Hail! Hail!
Hail! Hail! Hail! Hail!