|The heavenly voice of soprano Aprile Millo|
captured in hymn. (Photo: Christian Steiner)
"'Nearer, My God, to Thee' is a 19th-century Christian hymn by Sarah Flower Adams, based loosely on Genesis 28:11–19, the story of Jacob's dream. Genesis 28:11–12 can be translated as follows: 'So he came to a certain place and stayed there all night, because the sun had set. And he took one of the stones of that place and put it at his head, and he lay down in that place to sleep. Then he dreamed, and behold, a ladder was set up on the earth, and its top reached to heaven; and there the angels of God were ascending and descending on it...' The hymn is well known, among other uses, as the alleged last song the band on RMS Titanic played before the ship sank. The verse was written by the English poet and Unitarian hymn writer Sarah Flower Adams (1805–1848) at her home in Sunnybank, Loughton, Essex, England, in 1841. It was first set to music by Adams's sister, the composer Eliza Flower, for William Johnson Fox's collection Hymns and Anthems. The hymn even made its way briefly onto the operatic stage. The singer Emma Abbott, prompted by 'her uncompromising and grotesque puritanism' rewrote La traviata so that Violetta expired singing not Verdi's 'Addio del passato,' but 'Nearer My God to Thee.'" [Source] Where else have you heard that tune? Check it out after the jump.
|The Dream of Jacob (c. 1665) by Salvator Rosa|