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Praise to the holiest in the height – Chorus angelorum

First line:
Praise to the holiest in the height
also called 'Somervell'; NEH439ii, first contributed to Arundel Hymns 1902
author of text

Cardinal John Henry Newman (1801–1890) was educated at Trinity College, Oxford, and later became a Fellow at Oriel, where he met John Keble. Newman was ordained as an Anglican priest and was presented in 1828 to the vicarage of St Mary’s, Oxford, where his sermons attracted much attention. However, in 1845 he resigned from St Mary’s and converted to the Roman Catholic faith, causing a rift with Keble and isolating him from his Oxford life. In 1865 Newman pub­lished his poem ‘The Dream of Gerontius’, from which comes the hymn Praise to the Holiest in the height; the entire poem was set to music by Sir Edward Elgar in 1900. Newman published many volumes of sermons and two novels, both anonymously; he became a cardinal in 1879.

The tune ‘Chorus Angelorum’ appears as ‘Somervell’ in some hymn books after its composer Sir Arthur Somervell (1863–1937), who was a pupil of Stanford at Cambridge University and Parry at the Royal College of Music. Later, he became a teacher at the Royal College of Music and from 1901 he was the Inspector in Music to the National Board of Education; from 1920 until his knighthood in 1929 he was Chief Inspector. Somervell first contributed to Arundel Hymns in 1902 and his complete list of works includes numerous chamber, choral and vocal pieces and a symphony.

from notes by Sarah Langdon © 1999


Praise to the Lord
CDH55036Last few CD copies remaining

Track-specific metadata for CDH55036 track 8

Recording date
3 February 1989
Recording venue
St Paul's Cathedral, London, United Kingdom
Recording producer
Mark Brown
Recording engineer
Antony Howell
Hyperion usage
  1. Praise to the Lord (CDH55036)
    Disc 1 Track 8
    Release date: September 1999
    Last few CD copies remaining
  2. Praise to the Lord (CDH88036)
    Disc 1 Track 8
    Release date: October 1989
    Deletion date: September 1999
    Superseded by CDH55036
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