Jul, jul, strålande jul

My favorite Swedish Christmas carol is Jul, jul, strålande jul. The choir I sing in, Nota Bene, performed this song at the end of its Christmas concert on Wednesday.

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Jul, jul, strålande jul, glans över vita skogar,
himmelens kronor med gnistrande ljus,
glimmande bågar i alla Guds hus,
psalm som är sjungen från tid till tid,
eviga längtan till ljus och frid!
Jul, jul, strålande jul, glans över vita skogar!

Kom, kom, signade jul! Sänk dina vita vingar,
över stridernas blod och larm,
över all suckan ur människobarm,
över de släkten som gå till ro,
över de ungas dagande bo!
Kom, kom, signade jul, sänk dina vita vingar!

The lyrics in Swedish are quite beautiful, and I would like to share this beauty with my friends who do not speak Swedish. Because I have been unable to find a satisfying English translation to the lyrics, I decided to translate them myself. Here is my rough English translation:

Christmas, Christmas, glorious Christmas: shine over white forests,
heavenly crowns with sparkling lights,
glimmering arcs in the houses of God,
hymns that are sung throughout the ages,
eternal longing for light and peace!
Christmas, Christmas, glorious Christmas, shine over white forests!

Come, come, blessed Christmas: lower your white wings,
over the battlefield’s blood and cry,
over the breaths from the bosoms of men,
over the loved ones who’ve gone to their rest,
over the daybreak of newborn life!
Come, come, blessed Christmas: lower your white wings!


Unknown said...

This helpful! While attempting (without professional skills and using online Swedish-English dictionaries) a word-for-word translation for the singers in an upcoming performance,
I too stumbled on "dagande bo."
I am more interested in the precise meanings of words than in creating a poetic rendition. Will bring yours to the Dolce Canto members for their consideraton.

Unknown said...

Michael - Thank you so much for taking time to create this thoughtful and sensitive translation. I'll be singing the song as a solo this Christmas and the translation will be so helpful. Beste ønsker for en gledelig julefeiring med familie og venner, og for et velsignet og fredfyllt Nytt År :-)