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Second Annual "Christmas Carols from Around the World"

Duolingo brings us together from diverse cultures and countries. As we approach the winter holidays, many people strive to be a little kinder, a little more tolerant of others. A year ago an idea was hatched by a Frenchwoman, a Romanian, a Scot, and an American to share Christmas carols from our respective countries and to open that up to everyone to share holiday music that they love from any language or culture. The end result was a post filled with goodwill, cheer, and a lot of beautiful music. I wish to continue this tradition. Many thanks to all who post their links and to those who listen.

Wishing you a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

(Special thanks to Gabrielle, Florica, and Trofaste)

Be sure to click "follow discussion" in order to see updates to the post as more people share their carols. Merely leaving a comment will no longer ensure that you will receive an email notification.

December 1, 2017



Wow, that Huron Carol is breathtaking! Thank you for that. I also enjoyed Verreau's Minuit and the Cree Jingle Bells. Wonderful!


It's lovely. Is it widely sung amongst speakers of the language, Hal?


Ah. I had wondered because those singing it on Youtube mostly looked very northern European. Made me wonder whether he got many converts.


Wow, I'm glad that divine song lives on despite the tragic history. Thanks for the education, Hal.


Here are Christmas carols by American songwriters:

Do You Hear What I Hear https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ad7KU9bCTAM

O Little Town of Bethlehem https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cpHY3jU27dc

Silver Bells https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6IZwko9nE04

I'll Be Home For Christmas https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dL71eMc1blw

We Three Kings https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qu5RY94ldDc=RDqu5RY94ldDc

Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9L5mPfpeXxk

And one of the most poignant of American carols:

I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oZtNlZmnEMU


Here is a Ukrainian Christmas Carol list. I do not speak Ukrainian but I am Ukrainian. Please do try to understand what´s going on. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NFOsMBNyPe0 (Not sure if it was only supposed to be the French, Scottish, Romanian and American carols, but here you go.


ALL carols/songs are welcome from anywhere in the world. The more the merrier! Thank you for sharing. :-)


Hi everyone, my best Christmas carols aren't French, here they are http://dai.ly/x1ammsv


But for me the French Christmas carol will always be https://youtu.be/rR5NyGhKQkc

Wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Happy Holidays!


Ah Petit Papa Noël ! Un grand merci et Joyeux Noël !


Christ Is Born - Hwelih Isho' Chaldean Hymn https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GAiG_iKMoek&list=RDGAiG_iKMoek&t=82

Sung in Chaldean Neo-Aramaic


Florica, mulţumesc și Crăciun fericit!!!


Craciun fericit Rachel si La multi ani de ziua ta! :-)


Gorgeous Luscinda! I'd never heard the first song before, In Praise of Christmas, and the second one I know... but not like that! What a unique and beautiful interpretation.

I'm listening and enjoying right now. :-)


Australia has beautiful bush christmas carols but I can't find them!

However, this did happen on Christmas morning in Darwin in the Northern Territory of Australia in 1974. I remember a girl coming to my school (2 very large states away) after this event - the whole city was flattened !
Of course they wrote a song about it - this is an accurate video of the disaster complete with what now sounds like a rather cheesy song - but that song was very apt to Australians in 1974 : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZD0DRmWQ65Y


Feliz Navidad - Jose Feliciano

A bi-lingual song, popular in English and Spanish and beloved everywhere people enjoy happiness. It is the happiest song I can think of right now.

Here's a version with lyrics; not the best recording. www.youtube.com/watch?v=RTtc2pM1boE


One of my favourite (christian) Christmas carols:

Hoor de engelen zingen d'eer (the Dutch version of "Hark! the herald angels sing"): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jCv3oz-HbzY


In Dutch! What a fantastic find, thank you for sharing that.


This one is for my Finnish friends, I am sure there are more uplifting ones out there but this one is fun. Tonttu https://youtu.be/TwBSserNRx8


Thank you Luscinda for cluing me in on this thread. I love to listen to Berlioz's Shepherds Farewell https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e_pyk3wmHGw. Here's a link to the lyrics http://www.fbcradio.org/lyrics/5899/. The Kings Choir version is my favorite.


Divine, Jolynne. Thank you so much for linking this very lovely chorale piece. The Kings Choir is magnificent!


Where would this season be without a bit of Handel? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zk-RQz6jZqw ...and peace on Earth goodwill toward man! Glorious!


Hal, since you are such a wealth of interesting facts, you are more than welcome to be a bit of a pendant. ;-) For instance, I didn't realize that it was first performed in Dublin! I mistakenly thought it was London... time for me to do my homework.

Yes, you are right, the Messiah is Easter music, but since it commences with prophecies and then the birth, it just is very fitting for Christmas as well. I love the soprano part singing "And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavn'ly host, praising God, and saying..." which of course leads into the Glory to God chorus.

I have had the privilege of playing the string parts on many occasions. It never gets old.


My favorite French Christmas carol as introduced to me by a Finnish woman:

Entre le bœuf et l'âne gris https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KxIOBtL76HU

And a lovely French/American a cappella collaboration of It Came Upon a Midnight Clear https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a_ej7kRMeeU


I'm struggling to find recordings of the French ones I know - they're either not there or only available sung slowed right with odd timing or as instrumentals at the right speed. :-/ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k3gx1xxFDEs


Un flambeau, Jeanette, Isabelle --

Un flambeau! Courons au berceau!

C'est Jésus, bonnes gens du hameau.

Le Christ est né; Marie appelle!

Ah! Ah! Que la Mère est belle,

Ah! Ah! Que l'Enfant est beau!

Qui vient là, frappant de la porte?

Qui vient là, en frappant comme ça?

Ouvrez-donc, j'ai posé sur un plat

Des bons gateaux, qu'ici j'apporte

Toc! Toc! Ouvrons-nous la porte!

Toc! Toc! Faisons grand gala!


Well, exactly. At a carol's pace, not as a dirge.


This is one of my personal favourites, my Mother used to sing it when I was a child, it is a French carol sung here by a children's choir in the Hague. Il Est Né Le Divin Enfant https://youtu.be/CZ6qPMfnis8

This is another favourite beautifully and movingly performed by the NTNU in Norway, even the scenery is breathtaking. The Little Drummer Boy https://youtu.be/-VGQZwIlWiU


Lovely Gena, thank you for that!


Thanks Tex, I loved yours too .... I have just added another by editing my original post ,... it's well worth watching, it gives me goose pimples!


Hi dear Queen bee, I really like the song of NTNU. Thanks for that ;o)


Thanks Gabrielle, your selection is beautiful too. :-)



I wish I could participate but I don't have good carols.


Please feel welcome and participate by listening!


Who could forget this simple, yet powerful carol, lullaby if you will: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MbhxZOOXLvU, the music composed by Franz Xaver Gruber to Joseph Mohr's lyrics in a small town in Austria and first performed Christmas Eve 1818.

And I love the stories from the Christmas truce in 1914: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6KHoVBK2EVE

Dear Mother, I am writing from the trenches. It is 11 o'clock in the morning. Beside me is a coke fire, opposite me a 'dug-out' (wet) with straw in it. The ground is sloppy in the actual trench, but frozen elsewhere. In my mouth is a pipe presented by the Princess Mary. In the pipe is tobacco. Of course, you say. But wait. In the pipe is German tobacco. Haha, you say, from a prisoner or found in a captured trench. Oh dear, no! From a German soldier. Yes a live German soldier from his own trench. Yesterday the British Germans met shook hands in the Ground between the trenches, exchanged souvenirs, shook hands. Yes, all day Xmas day, as I write. Marvellous, isn't it? —Henry Williamson

Leutnant Kurt Zehmisch notierte in seinem Tagebuch, er habe seinen Leuten befohlen, während der Weihnachtsfeiertage nicht auf den Gegner zu schießen. Sie hätten Kerzen und Tannenbäume auf die Gräben zu stellen. Weiter schrieb er, dass die Briten durch Pfeifen und Klatschen ihre Zustimmung mitteilten und dass er – wie die meisten seiner Kameraden – die ganze Nacht wach geblieben sei. Am folgenden Tag hielt Zehmisch fest, dass einige Briten mit einem Fußball aus ihrem Graben gekommen seien. Sie hätten hin und her gekickt. Der kommandierende englische Offizier und Zehmisch selbst seien der übereinstimmenden Meinung gewesen, dass all dies unvorstellbar und unglaublich wunderbar sei.


You know, that story always gives me the towering rage. They shook hands, ate each other's bread and salt and then turned around and shot at each other the next day. The failure to learn, the sheer iniquity.

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