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Land of Hope and Glory

Background Information

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Land of Hope and Glory is a British patriotic song, found to an extent throughout the Commonwealth Realms. It is particularly noted for being played on the occasion of the Last Night of the Proms amidst much flag-waving, and for having long been seen as the unofficial anthem of the Conservative Party. The tune for the song was taken from the first of Edward Elgar's Pomp and Circumstance marches, which is used as a graduation march in many universities and high schools.

The song is also used as the anthem of England at the Commonwealth Games; England, as part of the United Kingdom, has as its anthem God Save the Queen (or King).

The music to which the words below are set is the trio theme from Elgar's Pomp and Circumstance March No. 1. Words were designed for the melody on the suggestion of King Edward VII who told Elgar he thought the melody would make a great song. When Elgar was requested to write a work for the King's coronation, he worked the suggestion into his Coronation Ode, for which he asked the poet and essayist A. C. Benson to write the words. The seventh and last section of the Ode uses the march's melody.

Due to the King's illness, the coronation was postponed. Elgar created a separate song, which was first performed by Clara Butt in June, 1902. In fact, only the first of the seven stanzas of the Ode's final section was re-used, as the first four lines of the second stanza below. This stanza, (which accompanies the trio section of the March) is the part which is sung today, the first and third having faded into obsolescence.

The reference to the extension of the British Empire's boundaries seems to reflect the Boer War, recently won at the time of writing, in which Britain gained further territory, endowed with considerable mineral wealth.

The writing of the song is precisely contemporaneous with the publication of Cecil Rhodes' will — in which the great empire builder bequeathed his considerable wealth for the specific purpose of promoting "the extension of British rule throughout the world", and added a long detailed list of territories which Rhodes wanted brought under British rule and colonised by Britons.

The song has been adopted (with altered lyrics) by the supporters of West Bromwich Albion Football Club - quite ironic considering that it was composed by a supporter of their local rivals Wolverhampton Wanderers.


Dear Land of Hope, thy hope is crowned.
God make thee mightier yet!
On Sov'reign brows, beloved, renowned,
Once more thy crown is set.
Thine equal laws, by Freedom gained,
Have ruled thee well and long;
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
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.

Guitar chords

[ G ] Dear Land of [ Em ] Hope, thy [ Asus4 ] hope is [ Am ] crowned.
[ Am7 ] God make thee [ D7 ] mightier [ G ] yet!
On [ F# ] Sov'reign [ F#7 ]brows, be-[ Bm ]-loved, re-[ Bm7 ]-nowned,
[ D ] Once more thy [ Bm ]crown is [ Em ] set. [ A ]
Thine [ G ] equal laws, by [ Em ] Freedom gained,
Have [ D ] ruled thee [ Em7 ] well and [ D ] long; [ A7 ]
By [ D ] Free-[ Bm7 ]-dom [ Bm ] gained, by [ G ] Truth [ F#m ] main-[ Em ]-tained,
Thine [ D ] Empire [ A7 ] shall be [ D ] strong. [ D7 ]
[ G ] Land of [ D ] hope and [ Em ] glo-[ G ]-ry,
[ C ] Mother [ G ] of the [ A ] free. [ D ]
[ G ] How [ A ] shall we ex-[ D ]-tol [ Bm ] thee,
[ G ] Who are [ A ] born of [ D ] thee? [ D7 ]
[ G ] Wider [ D ] still and [ Em ] wi-[ G ]-der,
[ C ] Shall thy [ G ] bounds be [ A ] set. [ D ]
[ G ] God, [ A ] who made thee [ D ] migh-[ Bm ]-ty,
[ C ] Make thee [ D ] mightier [ G ] yet. [ G7 ]
[ C ] God, [ D ] who made thee [ G ] migh-[ Em ]-ty,
[ Am7 ] Make thee [ D ] mightier [ G ] yet.
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