Fum, Fum, Fum

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Fum, Fum, Fum (Catalan: [ˈfum ˈfum ˈfum]) is a traditional Catalan Christmas carol.

It is thought to have originated in the 16th or 17th century. The word "fum" means smoke in Catalan, and it may simply refer to the smoke rising from a chimney as seen from afar, or, as indicated in the New Oxford Book of Carols, "may imitate the sound of a drum (or perhaps the strumming of a guitar)".[1] It is not typical of Spanish tradition but rather of Catalan tradition. Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) defines "fum" as "to play upon a fiddle," quoting Ben Jonson, "Follow me, and fum as you go."[2]

One source, the Musical Heritage Society insert 3428 (Christmas Songs From Around the World), indicates that "fum, fum, fum" is an onomatopoeia imitating the noise of a rocking cradle, and that the rhythms come from the Sardana, a courtly dance which originated in Catalonia and the Provence.

Lyrics[edit]

The English version is not really a translation but a version based on the traditional Catalan carol, created by Alice Parker and Robert Shaw in 1953. It was this version that popularized the carol in the United States and other English-speaking areas. There are several other versions in English as well.

English version[3] Catalan Version[4] Alternate Catalan version

On December five and twenty
fum, fum, fum.
On December five and twenty,
fum, fum fum.
Oh, a child was born this night
So rosy white, so rosy white
Son of Mary, virgin holy
In a stable, mean and lowly,
fum, fum, fum.
On December five and twenty
fum, fum, fum.
On December five and twenty
fum, fum, fum.
Comes a most important day
Let us be gay, let us be gay.
We go first to church and then we
Have the sweetest buns and candy,
fum, fum, fum, fum, fum.
God will send us days of feasting
fum, fum, fum.
God will send us days of feasting
fum, fum, fum.
Both in hot months and in cold
for young and old, for young and old.
We will tell the holy story
Ever singing of his glory,
fum, fum, fum.

A vint-i-cinc de desembre
fum, fum, fum (bis)
Ha nascut un minyonet
ros i blanquet, ros i blanquet;
Fill de la Verge Maria,
n'és nat en una establia.
Fum, fum, fum.
Allí dalt de la muntanya
fum, fum, fum (bis)
Si n'hi ha dos pastorets
abrigadets, abrigadets;
amb la pell i la samarra,
menjant ous i botifarra.
Fum, fum, fum.
Qui dirà més gran mentida?
Fum, fum, fum (bis)
Ja en respon el majoral
el gran tabal, el gran tabal;
jo en faré deu mil camades
amb un salt totes plegades.
Fum, fum, fum.
A vint-i-cinc de desembre
fum, fum, fum (bis)
n'és el dia de Nadal,
molt principal, molt principal,
quan n'eixirem de matines,
farem bones escudines.
Fum, fum, fum.
Déu vos do unes santes festes
fum, fum, fum (bis)
amb temps de fred i calor,
i molt millor, i molt millor
fent-ne de Jesús memòria
perquè ens vulgui dalt la glòria.
Fum, fum, fum.

El vint-i-cinc de desembre
fum, fum, fum (bis)
Ha nascut un minyonet
ros i blanquet, ros i blanquet;
Fill de la Verge Maria,
si n'és nat en una establia.
Fum, fum, fum.
Aquí dalt de la muntanya
fum, fum, fum (bis)
N'hi ha dos pastorets
abrigadets, abrigadets;
amb la pell i la samarra,
mengen ous i botifarra.
Fum, fum, fum.
Qui dirà més gran mentida?
Fum, fum, fum (bis)
Ja respon el majoral
amb gran cabal, amb gran cabal;
jo faré deu mil camades
amb un salt totes plegades.
Fum, fum, fum.

References[edit]

  1. ^ New Oxford Book of Carols
  2. ^ Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)
  3. ^ Version by Alice Parker and Robert Shaw, with their arrangements for SATB choir, a capella, Robert Shaw Choral Series: Music Especially Suitable for Christmas, NY, NY: G. Schirmer, Inc., 1953.
  4. ^ Traditional version compiled by the famous Catalan folklorist, Joan Amades. It can be consulted, for example, in Joan Amades: Les cent millors cançons de nadal, Barcelona: labutxaca, Grup 62, 2009

External links[edit]

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