Christmas Classics – The Twelve Days of Christmas (Lyrics Review and Song Meaning)

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From the ultimate Christmas song of “Jingle Bells” we move on to another timeless classic, “The Twelve Days of Christmas”. Surviving more than three centuries, this Christmas carol has probably seen the most variation of all the songs. Let’s explore the meaning of the song “Twelve Days of Christmas”.

“The Twelve Days of Christmas” was first published in England in 1780, although its roots seem to go back further. However, the first tangible proof of its existence is available from the year above. Initially, these verses were meant to be a song without music. Over the years, the song has evolved into a Christmas carol and one of the most widely reproduced songs. The most famous lyric variation of all is that of the English composer Frederic Austin from 1909.

“The Twelve Days of Christmas” is a cumulative song. What is said in the previous verse is integrated in the following verse. As a result, the last verses get longer and longer, absorbing the content of the previous verses. The theme of the song is based on the gifts a girl received from her “lover” during the “12 Days of Christmas” period. Listen to the track below.

Critique of the lyrics and meaning of the song “The Twelve Days of Christmas”

In Christian belief, “the twelve days of Christmas” is a festive season that runs from December 25 to January 5 of each year.

There are 12 verses to this song, each one describing a different gift that her lover gave her each day of the 12 day period. The gift increases in quantity as the number of days elapsed. The gifts received each day during this period are listed below.

  1. the first day of Christmas – A partridge in a pear tree
  2. the second day of Christmas – A partridge in a pear tree and Two turtledoves
  3. the third day of Christmas – A partridge in a pear tree, Two turtledoves and Three French hens
  4. the fourth day of Christmas – A partridge in a pear tree, Two turtledoves, Three French hens and Four calling birds
  5. on the fifth day of Christmas – all of the above and Five gold rings
  6. the sixth day of Christmas – all of the above and Six laying geese
  7. on the seventh day of Christmas – all of the above and Seven swans swimming
  8. on the eighth day of Christmas – all of the above and Eight maids milking
  9. on the ninth day of Christmas – all of the above and Nine dancing ladies
  10. the tenth day of Christmas – all of the above and Ten leaping lords
  11. the eleventh day of Christmas – all of the above and Eleven pipers
  12. on the twelfth day of Christmas – all of the above and Twelve drummers drumming

The different variations of the song included different types of birds on different types of trees, “the boys singing”, “the roaring bulls”, “the ships sailing”, “the bells ringing”, “the ladies turning” and so on. right now.

Biblical meanings of the twelve gifts

Some alleged / suggested meanings behind the meaning of each number in Christianity are listed below;

  1. A partridge in a pear tree – the partridge symbolizes Jesus Christ, the son of God
  2. Two turtledoves – represents the Old and New Testaments
  3. Three French hens – represents the three theological values; Peace, Hope and Charity
  4. Four calling birds – symbolizes the four evangelists; Matthew, Marc, Luc and John
  5. Five gold rings – sense shrouded in mystery; could be a reference to 5 great mysteries; Father, Son, Spirit, Creation and Redemption
  6. Six laying geese – 6 days of creation by God
  7. Seven swans swimming – represents the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit; Wisdom, Understanding, Advice, Strength, Knowledge, Piety and Fear of the Lord
  8. Eight maids milking – refers to the 8 beatitudes
  9. Nine dancing ladies – represents the 9 fruits of the Holy Spirit; Love, Joy, Peace, Longanimity, Kindness, Kindness, Fidelity, Sweetness and Self-control
  10. Ten leaping lords – refers to the ten commandments
  11. Eleven pipers – represents the eleven faithful apostles of Jesus
  12. Twelve drummers drumming – Refers to the twelve points of the Apostle’s creed

Not such a simple song after all?

Let us know what you think of “The Twelve Days of Christmas” and what it means in the comments below.

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