E. Cobham Brewer 18101897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
The holiday song of Winchester school. Mr. Brandon says it was composed by a boy of St. Marys College, Winchester, who was confined for misconduct during the Whitsun holidays, as report says, tied to a pillar. On the evening preceding the Whitsun holidays, the master, scholars, and choristers of the above college walk in procession round the pillar, chanting the six stanzas of the song. In the March number of the Gentlemans Magazine, 1796, a translation, signed J. R., was given of the song; and Dr. Milner thinks the original is not more than a century old. It is rather remarkable that the author has made domum a neuter noun. (See ADESTE FIDELES.)