Coventry Carol for String Quartet

By vaughan • 25th November 2010 • Posted in: Manor House Music Recordings

The 13th track on the Manor House String Quartet‘s first disc of string quartet Christmas carols, entitled ‘I Saw Three Ships and other carols’ is the mournful ‘Coventry Carol’. You can here a sample of violinist Vaughan Jones‘s arrangement by following the above link. It’s named after the manuscript from the Pageant of the Shearmen and Tailors of Coventry where it was first recorded in 1591. The tragic words are a song being sung to a little child on the day Herod chose to slaughter the innocent children.

string quartet Christmas carols

The front cover of our popular first album of string quartet Christmas carols called ‘I Saw Three Ships and other carols’

The arrangement for string quartet starts off with an introduction which explores many keys before introducing the melody rather like a processional. The tune of the carol is a lament – with the harmonies hopefully reflecting the late 16th century origins. It logically follows the preceding track Personent Hodie which also has ancient roots. The stately feel of the melody grows in intensity before eventually resolving in a celebratory G major chord.



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About Manor House Music

Manor House Music is a wedding string quartet and duo consisting of some of the UK’s finest musicians. Founded in 2005, and based on the borders of Buckinghamshire, Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire, we’ve now performed for over 800 weddings, corporate events and private functions. We combine a high quality of musical performance with a large repertoire of dynamic arrangements and a desire to work closely with clients to ensure that every detail is just right for your event.



Tel: 07870 171194