“Jolly Wat”


Jolly Wat, a shepherd, sits on a hill and plays his pipes. He is awakened by an angel announcing the birth of Jesus. He finds the baby and offers him all he has. Mary and Joseph send him back to his flocks with their blessing

Supplemental text

Jolly Wat
  Partial text(s)

          *** A ***

From Arthur Quiller-Couch, The Oxford Book of Ballads, #103,
pp. 439-441. Source not listed, and the song does not seem to
occur in tradition.

  Can I not sing but 'Hoy',
  When the joly shepard made so much joy?


The shepard upon a hill he sat;
He had on him his tabard and his hat,
His tarbox, his pipe, and his flagat;
His name was called Joly Joly Wat,
  For he was a gud herdes boy.
            Ut hoy!
  For in his pipe he made so much joy.

(9 additional stanzas)


The tale of the shepherds is found in the Bible in Luke 2:8-20. - RBW


  1. OBB 103, "Jolly Wat" (1 text)
  2. ST OBB103 (Partial)
  3. BI, OBB103


Author: unknown
Keywords: Jesus religious