Frère Jacques (/ˌfrɛrə ˈʒɑːkə/, French: [fʁɛʁ ʒɑk], in the nursery rhyme and in song more generally [fʁɛʁə ʒɑkə]; English: “Brother John”; Dutch: “Broeder Jacob”, German: “Bruder Jakob”, Italian: “Fra’ Martino”, Polish: “Panie Janie”), is a nursery rhyme of French origin. The rhyme is traditionally sung in a round.

The song is about a friar who has overslept and is urged to wake up and sound the bell for the matins, the midnight or very early morning prayers for which a monk would be expected to wake.

Frère Jacques, frère Jacques,
Dormez-vous? Dormez-vous?
Sonnez les matines! Sonnez les matines!
Ding, dang, dong. Ding, dang, dong.

The song is traditionally translated into English as:

Are you sleeping? Are you sleeping?
Brother John, Brother John,
Morning bells are ringing! Morning bells are ringing!
Ding, dang, dong. Ding, dang, dong.


brother_john sheet music

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