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Sir Edward Elgar

Elgar

Elgar - Land of Hope and Glory

Elgar will be forever linked with the song "Land of Hope and Glory", though in fact the words were added to Elgar's Pomp and Circumstance March No. 1.

Land of Hope and Glory was not written by Sir Edward Elgar.

He wrote the tune that is sung so lustily at every Last Night of the Proms, and almost every occasion celebrating English, as opposed to British, patriotism.

But his Pomp and Circumstance March No. 1 of 1902 originally had no words.

These were added later by A. C. Benson (1862-1925), who had originally written a longer poem to sung over the finale of Elgar's Coronation Ode.

The chorus of this poem makes up the familiar words to Land of Hope and Glory - though an extra note had to be added to Elgar's original Pomp and Circumstance theme to make the words fit.

It is said he wasn't a big fan of having words added to his instrumental piece!

Land Of Hope And Glory

Land of Hope and Glory,
Mother of the Free,
How shall we extol thee, 
Who are born of thee? 
Wider still and wider 
Shall thy bounds be set; 
God, who made thee mighty, 
Make thee mightier yet.

Full Poem

Dear Land of Hope, thy hope is crowned. 
God make thee mightier yet! 
On Sov'ran brows, beloved, renowned, 
Once more thy crown is set. 
Thine equal laws, by Freedom gained,
Thine equal laws, by Freedom gained,
By Freedom gained, by Truth maintained, 
Thine Empire shall be strong. 

Land of Hope and Glory,
Mother of the Free,
How shall we extol thee, 
Who are born of thee? 
Wider still and wider 
Shall thy bounds be set; 
God, who made thee mighty, 
Make thee mightier yet.

Thy fame is ancient as the days, 
As Ocean large and wide: 
A pride that dares, and heeds not praise, 
A stern and silent pride: 
Not that false joy that dreams content
With what our sires have won; 
The blood a hero sire hath spent 
Still nerves a hero son. 

Arthur Christopher Benson (1862-1925)

last updated: 13/03/2008 at 10:30
created: 09/05/2007

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