Jolly Old Saint Nicholas
"Jolly Old Saint Nicholas" is a Christmas song that originated with a poem by Emily Huntington Miller (1833-1913), published as "Lilly's Secret" in The Little Corporal Magazine in December 1865. The song's lyrics have also been attributed to Benjamin Hanby, who wrote a similar song in the 1860s, "Up on the Housetop". However, the lyrics now in common use closely resemble Miller's 1865 poem.
The traditional lyrics are:
This is the original published song in 1881:
- Jolly Old Saint Nicholas,
- Lean your ear this way;
- Don't you tell a single soul
- What I'm going to say,
- Christmas Eve is coming soon;
- Now my dear old man,
- Whisper what you'll bring to me;
- Tell me if you can.
- When the clock is striking twelve,
- When I'm fast asleep,
- Down the chimney broad and black
- With your pack you'll creep;
- All the stockings you will find
- Hanging in a row;
- Mine will be the shortest one;
- You'll be sure to know.
- Johnny wants a pair of skates;
- Susy wants a dolly
- Nellie wants a story book,
- She thinks dolls are folly
- As for me, my little brain
- Isn't very bright;
- Choose for me, dear Santa Claus,
- What you think is right.
- Mrs. Alfred Gatty, ed. (March 1869). Aunt Judy's May-Day Volume For Young People 6. Bell and Daldy, London. p. 316.
- "Jolly Old St. Nicholas". The Hymns and Carols of Christmas. Retrieved January 27, 2016.
- "Jolly Old St. Nicholas". Band Music Library. Tuxedo Union Free School District. Retrieved January 27, 2016.