The “Coventry Carol” is a Christmas carol dating from the 16th century. The carol was performed in Coventry in England as part of a mystery play called The Pageant of the Shearmen and Tailors. The play depicts the Christmas story from chapter two in the Gospel of Matthew. The carol refers to the Massacre of the Innocents, in which Herod ordered all male infants under the age of two in Bethlehem to be killed. The lyrics of this haunting carol represent a mother’s lament for her doomed child. It is the only carol that has survived from this play.
There are many versions out there, including one by Tori Amos, but this is my preferred version. Because it is creepy like it should be–especially near the end. Singing about the slaughter of innocents should be creepy.
2 thoughts on “28 Days of Holiday Music: Day 7: Lullay Lullay (Coventry Carol)”
I think Annie Lennox is great – always have. Very interesting Carol based around a lot of sadness. A young life spent under the care of insane Jesuit priests removed my interest in religion totally.
Annie Lennox is indeed one awesome woman. I agree wholeheartedly. I can only imagine how insane Jesuit priests might take the religion right out of a man. 🙂 I’m sure I’d be much the same!