Apear As My Shield [full score]

Composer
Year of composition
2002
Lyricist
Gerhardt
Difficulty
Difficult (Grades 7+)
Duration
10 minutes
Genre
Modern classical music
Instrumentation
Large mixed ensemble
Instrumental parts
Not available

The text of O Sacred Head, Now Wounded was originally based on a Latin devotional (Salve mundi salutari) addressing the body parts of the crucified Christ. Paul Gerhardt adapted this text from the Latin into ten verses of which James W. Alexander translated into English. Unfortunately, the English verse strays from the German text and loses much of the poetry. Ron Jeffer�s book Translations and Annotations of Choral Repertoire: German Texts is an excellent resource of a direct German/English translation. It is from this source that I have set to music three of Gerhardt�s verses hoping to retain the meaning of the original language.

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