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Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...

TheBigPinkLad 06 Apr 04 - 06:05 PM
Willa 07 Apr 04 - 10:01 AM
TheBigPinkLad 07 Apr 04 - 11:30 AM
masato sakurai 07 Apr 04 - 01:13 PM
TheBigPinkLad 07 Apr 04 - 01:22 PM
ard mhacha 07 Apr 04 - 02:00 PM
mg 07 Apr 04 - 02:32 PM
TheBigPinkLad 07 Apr 04 - 02:51 PM
McGrath of Harlow 07 Apr 04 - 04:29 PM
TheBigPinkLad 07 Apr 04 - 04:43 PM
McGrath of Harlow 07 Apr 04 - 05:20 PM
ard mhacha 08 Apr 04 - 03:17 AM
McGrath of Harlow 08 Apr 04 - 07:06 AM
ex-pat 08 Apr 04 - 09:19 AM
GUEST,cornelia503@msn.com 17 Apr 04 - 06:16 PM
Hrothgar 17 Apr 04 - 10:24 PM
Hesk 06 May 11 - 12:18 PM
MartinRyan 06 May 11 - 12:21 PM
Hesk 06 May 11 - 12:32 PM
MartinRyan 06 May 11 - 12:49 PM
PoppaGator 06 May 11 - 01:49 PM
Hesk 07 May 11 - 04:29 AM
banjoman 07 May 11 - 06:09 AM
GUEST,leeneia 07 May 11 - 09:58 AM
GUEST,leeneia 07 May 11 - 10:05 AM
Noreen 07 May 11 - 10:47 AM
Noreen 07 May 11 - 11:00 AM
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Subject: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: TheBigPinkLad
Date: 06 Apr 04 - 06:05 PM

Anyone got all the words to this? I can't find it in the dt ... it's a crossover pagan-christian hymn to the Virgin/May Queen we used to sing when I was a kid. Irish Catholic tradition:

Bring flowers of the fairest
Bring blossom the rarest
From garden and hillside
And woodland and dale
Our voices are ringing
Our glad hearts are singing
The praise of the lovliest flower of the May

Oh Mary we crown thee with blossom today
Queen of the angels and Queen of the May (x2)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: Willa
Date: 07 Apr 04 - 10:01 AM

Try this link http://www.monksofadoration.org/mom/mom67.html


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: TheBigPinkLad
Date: 07 Apr 04 - 11:30 AM

Thanks!


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Subject: Lyr Add: Bring Flowers of the Rarest
From: masato sakurai
Date: 07 Apr 04 - 01:13 PM

From here (with midi):

Bring Flowers of the Rarest

Text:   unknown   
Music:   from St. Basil's Hymnal
Bring flow'rs of the fairest, bring flow'rs of the rarest,
From garden and woodland and hillside and vale;
Our full hearts are swelling our glad voices telling
The praise of the loveliest Rose of the vale.

O Mary! we crown thee with blossoms today,
Queen of the Angels, Queen of the May,
O Mary we crown thee with blossoms today,
Queen of the Angels, Queen of the May.

Our voices ascending, in harmony blending,
Oh! thus may our hearts turn dear Mother, to thee;
Oh! thus shall we prove thee how truly we love thee,
How dark without Mary life's journey would be.

O Mary! we crown thee with blossoms today,
Queen of the Angels, Queen of the May,
O Mary we crown thee with blossoms today,
Queen of the Angels, Queen of the May.

O Virgin most tender, our homage we render,
Thy love and protection, sweet Mother, to win;
In danger defend us, in sorrow befriend us,
And shield our hearts from contagion and sin.

O Mary! we crown thee with blossoms today,
Queen of the Angels, Queen of the May,
O Mary we crown thee with blossoms today,
Queen of the Angels, Queen of the May.

Of Mothers the dearest, oh, wilt thou be nearest,
When life with temptation is darkly replete?
Forsake us, O never! Our hearts be they ever
As pure as the lilies we lay at thy feet.

O Mary! we crown thee with blossoms today,
Queen of the Angels, Queen of the May,
O Mary we crown thee with blossoms today,
Queen of the Angels, Queen of the May.
For some info on the song & lyrics, see this page.

Sheet music (very probably from St. Basil's Hymnal) is here.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: TheBigPinkLad
Date: 07 Apr 04 - 01:22 PM

Domo arigato!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: ard mhacha
Date: 07 Apr 04 - 02:00 PM

The definitive recording is by Father Sydney MacEwan, Tenor.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: mg
Date: 07 Apr 04 - 02:32 PM

A lovely song..can you tell us more about the pagan/Christian stuff...it is just the most wonderful Catholic song...we used to parade around the block..girls in pink and blue dresses, with the first communion girls (2nd grade) in their white dresses..flowers from all the gardens...we were discussing it in Newfoundland with people from all over and someone there ended up doing a thesis on it. mg


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: TheBigPinkLad
Date: 07 Apr 04 - 02:51 PM

I used it as part of an examination of the success of Roman over Celtic Christianity after the Great Synod of Whitby when St. Bede carried the day against St. Hild. There was deliberate effort to bring the pagans and Celtic Christians into the See of Rome and one of the methods used was to simply superimpose the feast days of the church over the existing pagan celebrations.

This song was written long after the assimilation but I used it to illustrate how thin the veneer can be. It's a bit like nature taking over when a town is abandoned. It's also a lovely tune.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 07 Apr 04 - 04:29 PM

Now I imagine we'll be having this in Mass in a few weeks; our version here is a little bit different ("Rose of the Vale" in May? In some parts of the world perhaps.) And the tune is slightly different from the midi too.

Bring flowers of the rarest,
bring blossoms the fairest
from garden and woodland
and hillside and dale;
our full hearts are swelling,
our glad voices telling
the praise of the loveliest flower of the vale.
O Mary we praise crown thee with blossom today
Queen of the Angels and Queen of the May
O Mary we praise crown thee with blossom today
Queen of the Angels and Queen of the May.

Their lady they name thee,
their mistress proclaim thee.
Oh grant that thy children
on earth be as true.
as long as the bowers
are radiant with flowers,
as long as the azure shall keep its bright hue.

Sing gaily in chorus
the bright heavens o'er us,
re-echo the strains we
begin upon earth;
their harps are repeating
the notes of our greeting,
for Mary herself is the cause of our mirth*.


(*Causa nostrae laetitiae)

I like that idea, in the last verse, of a session of angels in heaven joining in.
............................

"superimpose the feast days of the church over the existing pagan celebrations." Or rather, encourage people to hold on to the celebrations and the customs they already have, even if what they are celebrating is not quite the same?

It's a pity that all Christians couldn't have been more consistent in holding to that principle of doing it that way over the ages.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: TheBigPinkLad
Date: 07 Apr 04 - 04:43 PM

I've never found much any evidence of the church encouraging non-adherants to hold onto anything pre-Christian, McGrath, except in this manner. This is what was inferred by "thin veneer." The song is only nominally a hymn to Mary, Mother of God. In fact, it's just a celebration of the spring. I agree with your sentiment on tolerance ... it would be nice if one belief system didn't require the absolute abandonment of the another.

One of the things I miss most about abandoning Catholicism is the beautiful smell of the church on Easter Sunday.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 07 Apr 04 - 05:20 PM

The idea that everything good belongs inside the Christian way of life is a very important strand in Christianity over the ages. Not always the dominant strand, and that's the pity of it, but the places and times where it has are the places and times which are closest to being Christian, or somit seems to me.

"The song is only nominally a hymn to Mary, Mother of God" - of course it is precisely that. Composed with that in mind, sung with that in mind, in celebrations centring on that. And responding to the same human instinct as some pre-Christian traditions responded to.

"...it would be nice if one belief system didn't require the absolute abandonment of the another." Well, it is nice, now and then. More often than you'd think, in fact. We know the world is round, but we still use draw maps drawn on flat bits of paper to find our way about the place.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: ard mhacha
Date: 08 Apr 04 - 03:17 AM

McGrath, The words in your version of the Hymn is the same as that in the MacEwan recording.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 08 Apr 04 - 07:06 AM

I should point out that I gave the chorus slightly wrong - it should go O Mary we crown thee, not "praise thee".

With a little bit of juggling you can use the tune for Molly Malone, and vice versa...

Apparently the song was written by a Mary E. Walsh, was called the Crowning Hymn, and was first printed in a collection (the Wreath of Mary), in 1883. (I got that from here, which has some interesting stuff about this whole topic, though I don't agree with too much of it.)


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: ex-pat
Date: 08 Apr 04 - 09:19 AM

I have always loved this tune. It reminds me of the Whit Walks in Manchester when I was growing up. My mother, Mary, had it sang at my Dad's funeral in Westmeath and , of course, we sang it at her funeral.
I find myself singing it when the blossoms are out in Ontario in May.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: GUEST,cornelia503@msn.com
Date: 17 Apr 04 - 06:16 PM

Now can someone come up with the sheet music for this hymn? Thanks


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: Hrothgar
Date: 17 Apr 04 - 10:24 PM

This has tickled a memory cell. Now I have to dig out the one that goes:

"... or flower e'en the fairest
Is half so fair as thee."


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: Hesk
Date: 06 May 11 - 12:18 PM

I have read somewhere that Mary Walsh altered a 13th century Catholic Hymn, in some way, to come up with the hymn that is known today.
Did she rewrite the words, add words or change the tune?
Does anyone have information about it prior to 1883?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: MartinRyan
Date: 06 May 11 - 12:21 PM

I always associate this hymn with dead crows hanging from a post in the garden of the convent school which first tried to educate me....


Regards


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: Hesk
Date: 06 May 11 - 12:32 PM

Nasty. But dare I ask why?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: MartinRyan
Date: 06 May 11 - 12:49 PM

Hi Hesk

Actually - it's not as bad as it sounds! We used to have "May processions" around the school grounds - including an extensive market garden maintained by the nuns' gardeners. They would trap and hang up dead crows at the end of each row of produce to warn off the survivors and protect the crop. Curiously enough, I became a serious birdwatcher in later life - but lost my faith... ;>)
That hymn was a standard at the time, of course

Regards


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: PoppaGator
Date: 06 May 11 - 01:49 PM

A very lovely tune indeed; brings back memories of 1950s Irish-Catholic-American childhood.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: Hesk
Date: 07 May 11 - 04:29 AM

Still hoping that someone has some information about this hymn before Mary Walsh altered it in 1883.
It has the feel of a country song in some of the lyrics, especially the first verse, but is more obviously religious elsewhere.
I am curious about the verses, did Mary add the May Day type flavour, or did she make it more appropriate for Victorian congregations by increasing the religious content?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: banjoman
Date: 07 May 11 - 06:09 AM

Brings back memories of the May Processions at St. Teresa's Church in Liverpool in the late 40's and the 50's when roads were closed and a statue of Mary was paraded along utting avenue with rose petals strewed in front. As pupils of the school, it was mandatory to attend but in those days we never gave a thought to not being there.
However, we do still use this hymn occasionally in our local church and it sounds pretty good on guitar & banjo


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 07 May 11 - 09:58 AM

hear St Basil's Hymn on this page:

http://www.cpmusic.com/tradmus.html

It's a long page, so do a search for 'basil'.

Actually, I can't imagine anybody fitting the words above to this tune. I believe there's some confusion here.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 07 May 11 - 10:05 AM

I think it's silly to suppose that anytime an old-timer noticed anything in nature that he was being a pagan. In prior centuries, understanding plants and animals was essential to survival, and so they were on people's minds a lot.

Besides, Mary was female and of course she likes flowers.

I help take care of a garden with a shrine to Mary. At the side of her shrine are two planters in which the plants alternately drown and suffer drought. One day, someone put a big ceramic snail in one of the planters. So far that fragile snail has survived two years of storms, hoboes and falling branches.

Of course it has. It's HER snail.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Bring flowers of the rarest ...
From: Noreen
Date: 07 May 11 - 10:47 AM

This was my favourite hymn in the May Processions we took part in also in Liverpool, banjoman- Holy Rosary, Aintree, in the 60s.

We all wore our white dresses and followed the statue of Mary, but strewing petals was reserved for the June processions for the Sacred Heart- I don't suppose we could get rose petals in May. I was never chosen to be a 'strewer'- that was the ultimate ambition. (I don't suppose I have used that word for at least forty years.)

Always remember lovely weather- I think only one time we processed round the school hall when it was raining :)


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Subject: Lyr Add: I'll Sing A Hymn To Mary
From: Noreen
Date: 07 May 11 - 11:00 AM

Hrothgar, if you're still around: the snippet you quoted is from the following hymn which we also used for May processions:


I'll Sing A Hymn To Mary

I'll sing a hymn to Mary,
The Mother of my God,
The Virgin of all virgins,
Of David's Royal blood.
O teach me, holy Mary,
A loving song to frame,
When wicked men blaspheme thee,
To love and bless thy name.

O Lily of the Valley,
O mystic Rose what tree
Or flower, e'en the fairest,
Is half so fair as thee?
O let me, though so lowly,
Recite my Mother's fame:
When wicked men blaspheme thee,
I'll love and bless thy name.

O noble Tower of David,
Of gold and ivory,
The Ark of God's Own promise,
The Gate of Heaven to me;
To live, and not to love thee,
Would fill my soul with shame:
When wicked men blaspheme thee,
I'll love and bless thy name.

But in the crown of Mary,
There lies a wondrous gem,
As Queen of all the Angels,
Which Mary shares with them;
"No sin hath e'er defiled thee,"
So doth our faith proclaim:
When wicked men blaspheme thee,
I'll love and bless thy name.

Fr. J. Wyze 1825-1898

We only used the first three verses of those above.
I copied these words from http://www.catholictradition.org/Mary/may-queen.htm which also has sheet music for the hymn, though it's not the tune we used.


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