Niue Christmas stamps features iconic Christmas carols by Candlelight, a well known Christmas tradition of singing carols.
The ‘Carols by Candlelight’ event in Niue is organised by church groups, and encourages the community to get together to enjoy the Christmas spirit.
The carols featured in this issue are Silent Night, Joy to the World, Away in a Manger and Deck the Halls.
Iconic Christmas carols by Candlelight on Stamps
30c – Silent Night
Originally composed in 1818 by Austrian Franz Xaver Gruber with lyrics by Joseph Mohr, Silent Night is such an iconic carol that it was declared intangible cultural heritage by UNESCO in 2011.
$1.40 – Joy to the World
Joy to the World was originally written by Isaac Watts and was based on Psalm 98 of the Bible.
Although not originally written as a carol for Christmas time, it has since become one of the most popular and well known Christmas songs.
$2.00 – Away in a Manger
Originally titled Luther’s Cradle Hymn, Away in a Manger was first published in the late 19th century.
The tune that most commonly accompanies the carol was written by William J. Kirkpatrick in 1895.
$4.00 – Deck the Halls
The melody of Deck the Halls comes from an old Welsh winter carol, Nos Galan.
The English lyrics (which are not based on the original Welsh lyrics) were written by Thomas Oliphant in 1862.
Christmas carols trend
A Christmas carol is a song or hymn whose lyrics are on the theme of Christmas, and which is traditionally sung on during Christmas time.
In New Zealand and Australia, where it is the middle of summer at Christmas, there is a tradition of Carols by Candlelight concerts held outdoors at night in cities and towns across the country, during the weeks leading up to Christmas.
People in the audience hold lit candles and join in singing some of the carols in accompaniment with the celebrities.
A recent trend in New Zealand is, smaller towns host their own Carols by Candlelight concerts.
Title: Iconic Christmas carols by Candlelight
Date of Issue: 25 November 2015
Denominations: 30c, $1.40, $3.00 and $4.00
Source: New Zealand Stamps