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Last Updated: Friday, 23 December 2005, 14:23 GMT
O Holy Night tops carols survey
Andy Abraham
Andy Abraham was runner-up to Shayne Ward in The X Factor final
O Holy Night has topped a poll of favourite Christmas carols for the third year running.

The carol, which was written in France in 1847, beat Silent Night into second place in the survey of more than 88,000 Classic FM listeners.

It has been recorded many times and was performed by The X Factor runner-up Andy Abraham in the TV talent show's recent live final.

In the Bleak Midwinter came third, with Hark! the Herald Angels Sing in fourth.

In fifth place in the annual poll was O Come, All Ye Faithful.

Festive music

O Holy Night was penned by Placide Clappeau, a wine merchant and mayor of Roquemaure, France, with composer Adolphe-Charles Adam, who is best known for the ballet Giselle, writing the music.

It was translated into English in the late 19th century by John Sullivan Dwight.

Operatic group Il Divo are among the acts to record recent versions.

Classic FM station manager Darren Henley said: "O Holy Night has captured the public's imagination like no other Christmas carol."

Listeners voted for their favourite festive music on the station's website.

Their top 30 choices will be counted down on the station, beginning at 1200GMT on Christmas Day.

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