18557 Hamilton Fraser

The Twelve Days of Christmas

Our Artistic  take on the Twelve Days of Christmas

“On the first day of Christmas Willem Dolphyn gave to me a platter of ripe green pears.

On the second day of Christmas Pablo Picasso gave to me two flags of peace with a dove, and a platter of ripe green pears…

On the third day of Christmas Francois de Montholon gave to me three French hens.

On the fourth day of Christmas Karl Martens gave to me four perching birds.

On the fifth day of Christmas Auguste Bouvard gave to me five gold frames.

On the sixth day of Christmas Pierre Grisot gave to me six ladies dancing.

On the seventh day of Christmas Derek Gardner gave to me seven ships-a-sailing.

On the eighth day of Christmas Helen Bradley gave to me eight people picnicing.

On the ninth day of Christmas Kenneth Webb gave to me nine geese-a-running.

On the tenth day of Christmas Gladwell & Patterson gave to me ten toys-a-talking.

On the eleventh day of Christmas Jan Jacob Spohler gave to me eleven skaters skating.

On the twelfth day of Christmas Paul S. Brown gave to me twelve cheeses melting.”

View our Twelve Days collection here

“The Twelve Days of Christmas” is an English Christmas Carol first recorded around 1780. Originally intended as a chant or rhyme it was set to music by Frederick Austin and published in 1909 by Novello & Company, he added the prolongation of the verses with “five gold rings.”

The origins of the song maybe French, who have several New Year carols featuring partridge or perdrix, as the first gifts. The symbolism of the gift for the day, it is thought, are rooted in the food or sports from that month.

The twelve days in the song start with Christmas Day, or in some traditions, the day after Christmas, St. Stephen’s Day. They then count up to the day before Epiphany. Twelfth day is the 6th, the last day of the Christmas festivities and traditionally observed as a time of merrymaking.

We thought it would make a great theme for our Christmas windows this year especially with gold being the colour to mark our W.H.Patterson’s 50th anniversary celebrations. We have also somewhat abridged the original and used it to count up to Christmas!


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