I was glad

I was glad (Latin incipit "Laetatus Sum") is an introit commonly used in the Anglican church, and also used as an anthem traditionally sung at the coronation of British monarchs. Its most famous setting was written in 1902 by Sir Hubert Parry.

The text of the anthem consists of verses from Psalm 122:

I was glad when they said unto me:
We will go into the house of the Lord. Verse 1
Our feet shall stand in thy gates, o Jerusalem. Verse 2

Jerusalem is built as a city that is at unity in itself. Verse 3
For there the tribes go up, even the tribes of the Lord:
To testify unto Israel, and to give thanks unto the name of the Lord.Verse 4

For there is the seat of judgement,
even the seat of the house of David. Verse 5

O pray for the peace of Jerusalem.
They shall prosper that love thee. Verse 6

Peace be within thy walls
and plenteousness within thy palaces. Verse 7

For my brethren and companions' sakes
I will wish thee prosperity. Verse 8

Peace be within thy walls
and plenteousness within thy palaces!

Most of the content of the psalm is a prayer for the peace and prosperity of Jerusalem, and its use in the coronation service clearly draws a parallel between Jerusalem and the United Kingdom, as William Blake had in his poem Jerusalem (which Parry set to music later, in 1916).

Use at coronations

Settings for earlier coronations were composed by Henry Purcell and William Boyce, among others. Parry's version was written for the coronation of King Edward VII and revised in 1911 for that of King George V, when the familiar introduction was added. This setting employs antiphonal choir effects and brass fanfares. Apart from the imperial splendour of the music, the chief innovation is the incorporation in the central section of the acclamations "Vivat Rex ... " or "Vivat Regina ... " ("Long live King/Queen ...") with which the Queen's Scholars of Westminster School traditionally greet the entrance of the monarch. This section, which has to be slightly rewritten every time a new monarch is crowned, is sometimes omitted when the anthem is performed on non-royal occasions. At the coronation of a king and queen, the vivat for the queen precedes that for the king.

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