"I Vow to Thee, My Country is a British patriotic song created in 1921 when a poem by Sir Cecil Spring-Rice was set to music by Gustav Holst."--Wikipedia
"I Vow to Thee" is one of those stirring traditional pieces that seems to summon up the natural rolling hills and fields of the English landscape by just listening to it.
Here it is combined with footage of the funeral of Great Britain's most famous statesman of the 20th Century.
When I was about six, my father bought me what was called a book "for young adults" on Churchill's life shortly after the old fellow had died. It emphasized Churchill's larger than life persona and the enourmous span of his career as a politician, writer, soldier, historian and wartime leader. I was of course taken by the theatricality of his coming to office at a dark moment in British and democratic history. I went back to this book from time to time and one might say it was the starting point of my interest and affection for the British nations.
There have so many versions of his life played out in books and film and television mini-series that one might be forgiven for not stepping back a bit and marvelling how one man, however flawed, made such a difference to the world at a crucial time and could later write so well about the times of his life and his nation.
Although I likely would never have voted for the guy, I have always felt a certain fondness for the resolution and durabiity of this man. So call this a chance to share one of my favorite hymms and recall London and the United Kingdom at a very different time of official pagentry.