HAMBURG

Composer: Lowell Mason

Dr. Lowell Mason (the degree was conferred by the University of New York) is justly called the father of American church music; and by his labors were founded the germinating principles of national musical intelligence and knowledge, which afforded a soil upon which all higher musical culture has been founded. To him we owe some of our best ideas in religious church music, elementary musical education, music in the schools, the popularization of classical chorus singing, and the art of teaching music upon the Inductive or Pestalozzian plan. More than that, we owe him no small share of the respect which the profession of music enjoys at the present time as contrasted with the contempt in which it was held a century or more ago. In fact, the… Go to person page >

Tune Information

Composer: Lowell Mason (1824)
Meter: 8.8.8.8
Incipit: 11232 34323 33343
Key: F Major
Source: Adapted from a Gregorian Chant
Article: When I Survey the Wondrous Cross by Sue Mitchell-Wallace (from "The Hymn")

Texts

Crucifixion to the World by the Death of Christ

When I survey the wondrous cross
on which the Prince of glory died,
my richest gain I count but loss,
and pour contempt on all my pride.

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Notes

Lowell Mason (PHH 96) composed HAMBURG (named after the German city) in 1824. The tune was published in the 1825 edition of Mason's Handel and Haydn Society Collection of Church Music. Mason indicated that the tune was based on a chant in the first Gregorian tone. HAMBURG is a very simple tune with only five tones; its simplicity allows us to focus entirely on the text. Sing stanzas 1-3 in harmony and stanza 4 in unison. Try singing one of the middle stanzas unaccompanied. Although some prefer larger organ accompaniment on stanza 4, Watts' profound text can also suggest a quieter and humble treatment. The suggested alternate tune ROCKINGHAM (178) is also closely associated with this text, especially in British and Canadian hymnals. --Psalter Hymnal Handbook

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