French Christmas carols: chants de Noël

Bring some festive fun into your home this Christmas with these traditional Christmas carols…en français!

French Christmas carols, or Chants de Noël, are popular across France where Christmas is an important holiday. The French typically celebrate en famille, generations of the same family gathering for big festive meals and attending religious services at Church. For children it is an exciting time – children’s Christmas songs are sung and played at home, at school and in shops across the country in the run up to 25th December.

Although the French have their own carols, they do translate carols from other countries of the world. Below are lyrics to Silent Night, O Christmas Tree and much-loved Jingle Bells…

If there’s one fun way to learn a language and pick up new vocabulary, this is it – and no dictionary in sight!

Douce nuit (Silent Night)

Douce nuit, sainte nuit!

Dans les cieux! L’astre luit.

Le mystère annoncé s’accomplit.

Cet enfant sur la paille endormit,

C’est l’amour infini,

C’est l’amour infini!

Sweet night, holy night!

In the heavens the star shines.

The foretold mystery comes true.

This child sleeping on the hay,

Is infinite love,

Is infinite love!

Christmas_Trees

Mon beau sapin (O Christmas tree)

Mon beau sapin,

Roi des forêts,

Que j’aime ta verdure.

Quand vient l’hiver

Bois et guérets

Sont dépouillés

De leurs attraits.

Mon beau sapin,

Roi des forêts,

Que j’aime ta parure.

My beautiful tree,

King of the forests,

How I love your greenness.

When winter come

Woods and tillages

Are stripped

Of their attractions.

My beautiful tree,

King of the forests,

How I love your finery.

Vive le vent (Jingle Bells)

Vive le vent

Vive le vent

Vive le vent d’hiver

Qui s’en va sifflant soufflant

Dans les grands sapins verts

Oh!

Vive le temps

Vive le temps

Vive le temps d’hiver

Boule de neige et jour de l’an

Et bonne année grand-mère

Joyeux joyeux Noël

Aux mille bougies

Qu’enchantent vers le ciel

Les cloches de la nuit.

Oh!

Vive le temps

Vive le temps

Vive le temps d’hiver

Qui rapporte aux vieux enfants

Leurs souvenirs d’hier.

Sur le long chemin

Tout blanc de neige blanche

Un vieux monsieur s’avance

Avec sa canne dans la main

Et tout là haut le vent

Qui siffle dans les branches

Lui souffle la romance

Qu’il chantait petit enfant

Oh!

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