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"Ar Hyd y Nos" ("All through the Night") is a Welsh folksong sung to a tune which was first recorded in Edward Jones' Musical and Poetical Relics of the Welsh Bards (1784). The Welsh lyrics were written by John Ceiriog Hughes. It has been translated into several languages, including English. The song is included in Fantasia on British Sea Songs at the Last Night of the Proms, representing Wales.

The melody was used by John Gay in The Beggar's Opera.[1] It is also used in the hymn "Go My Children With My Blessing."

The song is highly popular with traditional Welsh male voice choirs, and is sung by them at festivals in Wales and around the world.[1]

The song is also sometimes considered a Christmas carol, and as such has been covered by numerous artists on Christmas albums, most recently including Olivia Newton-John and Michael McDonald who performed the song as a duet on Newton-John's 2007 album Christmas Wish.

Welsh version

Holl amrantau'r sêr ddywedant
Ar hyd y nos
Dyma'r ffordd i fro gogoniant
Ar hyd y nos.
Golau arall yw tywyllwch
I arddangos gwir prydferthwch
Teulu'r nefoedd mewn tawelwch
Ar hyd y nos.

O mor siriol, gwena seren
Ar hyd y nos
I oleuo'i chwaer ddaearen
Ar hyd y nos.
Nos yw henaint pan ddaw cystudd
Ond i harddu dyn a'i hwyrddydd
Rhown ein golau gwan da'n gilydd
Ar hyd y nos.

English version

Sleep my child and peace attend thee,
All through the night
Guardian angels God will send thee,
All through the night
Soft the drowsy hours are creeping
Hill and vale in slumber steeping,
I my loving vigil keeping
All through the night.

While the moon her watch is keeping
All through the night
While the weary world is sleeping
All through the night
O'er thy spirit gently stealing
Visions of delight revealing
Breathes a pure and holy feeling
All through the night.

In an alternate version, the second verse is substituted with:

Angels watching ever round thee
All through the night
In thy slumbers close surround thee
All through the night
They will of all fears disarm thee,
No forebodings should alarm thee,
They will let no peril harm thee
All through the night.
[2]

Cultural references

  • In the episode Denial, Anger, Acceptance of the popular television show The Sopranos, Meadow Soprano and her choir sing the English version of the song, intercut with the mock execution of Christopher Moltisanti, and the real execution of Brendan Filone.
  • In season 3 of the series "Angel" the character Daniel Holtz is frequently heard singing the English version of this song.
  • An a cappella version of the song occurs very briefly at the end of the Vulcan/Volcano scene in Terry Gilliam's film The Adventures of Baron Munchausen, (1988) as Vulcan kisses Venus. It is assumed that the cyclopses/miners are the singers.
  • In the episode "Thursday's Child" in season 5 of Road to Avonlea, Alec King (played by Cedric Smith) sings the English version of this song to his son Daniel. However, the lullaby applies to everyone else awake in the household, given the recent bout of TB in the youngest daughter, Cecily, which has thrown the family into crisis.
  • The TV movie of A Child's Christmas in Wales features the family singing the song towards the end of the movie, but in English.
  • The film Knowing, starring Nicolas Cage, features his character's wife singing the English version of the song to their child.
  • Carter Burwell's soundtrack to the film The General's Daughter features a version of the tune played on a glockenspiel.

References

  1. ^ a b Hywel, John (1987). Famous Songs of Wales/Caneuon Enwog Cymru. Penygroes, Caernarfon: Gwynn. ISBN 0-900426-60-8. 
  2. ^ All Through the Night Translation, http://www.mcglaun.com/thru_night.htm

External links

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Source material

Up to date as of January 22, 2010

From Wikisource

Ar Hyd y Nos
by Edward Jones
Wikipedia logo Wikipedia has more on:
Ar Hyd y Nos.

Ar Hyd y Nos is a Welsh folksong sung to a tune which was first recorded in Musical Relics of the Welsh Bards. The Welsh lyrics were written by John Ceiriog Hughes. It has been translated into several languages, including English.

The earliest recording of this work was in 1784 (Edward Jones, "Musical and Poetical Relicks of the Welsh Bards")

A translation by J. Mark Sugars

Stars gaze down and tell their story,
All through the night,
Here's the way to a land of glory,
All through the night;
Other light seems merely darkness
When true beauty shines upon us,
Heaven's family tranquil o'er us,
All through the night.
See how smiles a star serenely
All through the night,
Beaming at the moon so keenly,
All through the night;
Night is old age, with grief coming
But, adorning Man and evening
Pale light from us will be streaming
All through the night.

All Through the Night by Harold Boulton

Sleep my love, and peace attend thee
All through the night;
Guardian angels God will lend thee,
All through the night,
Soft the drowsy hours are creeping,
Hill and vale in slumber steeping,
I my loving vigil keeping,
All through the night.
Angels watching ever round thee,
All through the night,
In thy slumbers close surround thee,
All through the night,
They should of all fears disarm thee,
No forebodings should alarm thee,
They will let no peril harm thee,
All through the night.


Various additional verses exist.


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