Looking for Irish Christmas songs? Want to know about all the different types of Christmas songs available? Read our guide for more information on choosing the right song for you…
Various Irish Christmas Songs
St Patrick introduced Christianity to the Irish Isles and Irish people embraced Catholicism with fervor. Christmas is celebrated with the greatest of religious and social reverence. Irish Christmas songs hark back to the middle ages when the Wexford Irish melody was first performed in the 13th century. It was the most famous of the Christmas carols sung by ancient Irish people and was borne from the cultural heritage of the Irish.
This Irish song originated from a region in Ireland called Country Wexford, hence the name given to the Christmas melody. Irish Christmas songs of old include ‘Curoo, Curoo’ which is a holiday song of birds. This particular song was first sung in the 19th century. The Clancy Brothers popularized this song in recent times.
Certain Irish Christmas songs that have survived to contemporary times have royal elements in them, such as ‘Once in Royal David’s City’. Cecil Alexander was a famous Irish singer and songwriter who composed and sung this song in the early 1850s. Henry Gantlet did the musical arrangement for this Christmas song.
One of the Irish Christmas songs that has been translated into various languages and sung by non-Catholic sects is ‘The 12 Days of Christmas’. This song is a hit among children who enjoy singing them as Christmas carols. It commemorates the larger festival of Christmastide, which lasts for 12 days.
Ancient Irish Christmas Celebrations
The worship of the natural world was the basis of ancient, pre-Christian faiths practiced by Irish Druids and important festivals revolved around the seasons. When Christian missionaries attempted the conversion of Northern Europeans into the Christian faith, the date of 25 December was chosen to mark the birth of Christ, or Christmas, as it corresponded with the winter solstice, a powerful pagan celebration of nature. The date also coincided with Sol Invictus, a Roman solar holiday on which solar deities were worshipped as the Sun advanced northward.
Christmas is the focal celebration of the Irish. Irish Christmas songs have survived through the ages to present times and are delightful melodies energetically sung during the Christmas season. Christmas carols of Irish songs are a favorite among all denominations of Christians and certain songs have been translated to a variety of versions.