Wednesday, August 13, 2008

By request: Vreneli, the lyrics

An anonymous commenter caught up with my Friday Five on Summer Camp from a few weeks ago and wants the words to Vreneli. I, too, was surprised at the non-presence of this song, which I've been singing for 53 years now, on the Internet, as far as lyrics went. Here's the lyric that we sing at Family Camp, to the best of my memory, and it's pretty much the same as I remember from Brownies:

VRENELI

O Vreneli, my pretty one, pray tell me where's your home?
"My home it is in Switzerland, 'tis made of wood and stone,
My home it is in Switzerland, 'tis made of wood and stone."
Chorus: Yo ho ho, tra la la la,
Yo ho ho, tra la la la,
Yo ho ho, tra la la la,
Yo ho ho, tra la la la,
Yo ho ho, tra la la la,
Yo ho ho, tra la la la,
Yo ho ho, tra la la la,
Yo ho ho!
O Vreneli, my pretty one, pray tell me where's your heart?
"O that, kind sir, I gave away, but still I feel it smart,
O that, kind sir, I gave away, but still I feel it smart."
(Chorus)
O Vreneli, my pretty one, pray tell me where's your head?
"My head I also gave away, it's with my heart," she said;
"My head I also gave away, it's with my heart," she said.
(Chorus)

Those are all the verses I know. If anyone has more or very different ones, let me know!

10 comments:

Sisterfilms said...

I love that song! The only difference is that at family camp we say "Oh that," she said, "I gave away..." instead of kind sir. But that is probably what you sang in brownies. good job on writing out all the Yo Ho Ho's, I would have gotten bored!

Anonymous said...

I learned a different verse two at church camp. I dug through the attic and found the lyrics in "Songs of Many Nations" -the UCC camp songbooks.

O Vreneli, my pretty one, pray tell me where's your heart?
"My heart," she said, "I gave away, its pain would not depart."

Becky

Mama Squirrel said...

Oh my--we sang that in the fifth or sixth grade (try thirty years ago?) and I haven't thought of it since. Thanks for the memory!

(Returning the visit! Thanks for stopping by and for reminding me of more Christmas chapters.)

Judith said...

I agree with sisterfilms. We also said "Oh that", she said, "I gave away".

God bless you for preserving this song on the Internet! I learned it in, like, grade 4 over 40 years ago!

! V r e n said...

Hi I just stumbled upon your blog through google! My grandmother used to sing this song to me.
Question, do you know what the name Vreneli means?

My parents decided to spell my name
Vrennily and not Vreneli the original way.

Thank you!

Vreneli said...

My name too is Vreneli because my mother learnt the song though guides. I have always been told it means little fairy.

Anonymous said...

Here's what we used to sing -- seems like someone has been expanding on the original song!

Oh Vreneli, my pretty one, pray tell me where's your home?
My home it is in Switzerland, it's made of wood and stone.

Oh Vreneli, my pretty one, pray tell me what's your name?
My name, you'll find, is Vreneli; it's always been the same.

Oh Vreneli, my pretty one, pray tell me who's your man?
My man must be as quick as me, so catch me if you can!

Oh Vreneli, my pretty one, pray tell me when's the dance?
The band begins at six o'clock, and don't forget your pants.

Oh Vreneli, my pretty one, pray tell me which is which?
Well, this goes here and that goes there; learn this and you'll be rich.

Oh Vreneli, my pretty one, pray tell me why you smile?
I smile because I had not seen such wit in quite a while.

Oh Vreneli, my pretty one, pray tell me how d'you do?
I'm absolutely fabulously fine, and how are you?

the8rnut said...

Vreneli is a Swiss-German diminutive of Verena.

Anonymous said...

Used to sing this as part of the BBC 'Singing Together' radio broacasts in around 1980-ish. The only different lyrics I can remember are 'My home it is in Switzerland, its faith will not depart. May help jog a few memories out there.

J.Schif said...

This brings back memories. I coached my sister who is 2.5 years younger than me to sing this song for her 7th grade talent competition. She won. I think it was because she sang both the Alto boy's voice part as well as the Soprano girl's voice part. I hope to get the music somewhere so we can sing it to her at her retirement part of Feb. 29, 2012. She is retiring after 30 years of service in the State of Washington. She was 12 years old when she sang this song. She still sings, but not as well as then.