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"Silent Night" most recorded UK Christmas song

By Alice Baghdjian

LONDON (Reuters) - Christmas carol "Silent Night" has topped the list of Britain's "most recorded Christmas song of all time," according to music licensing company PPL.

The 190-year-old Austrian carol beat more recent festive compositions such as "White Christmas" and "Winter Wonderland" to the top spot in a list of more than 170 recordings, PPL said in a statement Monday.

"Silent Night is a beautiful carol which encapsulates the feeling of Christmas entirely, said Mike Dalby, Lead Reporting Analyst at PPL. "Everyone from punk band The Dickies right through to Sinead O'Connor has recorded it, which exemplifies just how much it resonates with all different types of artists."

PPL compiled the list using a database of about 1,800 Christmas themed recordings to rate the Christmas songs.

Sinead O'Connor's 1991 recording was the most popular version of the carol in Britain, according to PPL. More recent covers have been released from artists such as Christina Aguilera, Susan Boyle, and Annie Lennox, who recorded the song as part of her Christmas compilation album released in the UK last month.

A staple part of carol services across the globe, Silent Night has been translated into 44 different languages from the original German.

The list has also revealed the song to be a versatile track, boasting recordings from range of music genres. The classic Christmas song has spawned a wide variety of covers, including pop, punk and even heavy metal versions.

The original version of the carol "Stille Nacht" was written in 1816 in Austria by the priest Father Joseph Mohr. It was first performed on Christmas Eve in 1818.

(Reporting , editing by Paul Casciato)

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