The next time you hear 'Jerusalem' blasted from the pulpits, or more likely these days from the Proms, spare a thought for its composer, Hubert Parry. Many would not associate Parry's introduction to the world taking place at the seaside resort of Bournemouth in Dorset on 27th February 1848.
Parry's birth was announced in the Salisbury and Winchester Journal printed on Saturday March 4th, 1848 in the Births section:
'Births: February 27 at Bournemouth, Mrs Gambier Parry, of a son'.
Sadly a further announcement was made in the same journal on Saturday March 18, 1848: 'Died, March 11, at Bournemouth, Isabella, wife of Thomas Gambier Parry, Esq, of Highnam Court, Gloucester'
The infant Parry was baptised at St. Peter's Church, Bournemouth on March 20th, his address was given as 'Highnam Court, Gloucester'.
Commentators seem to have noted the effect of being born by the sea on Parry's future artistic career. He owned a house at Rustington, Sussex, for many years and spent many hours by and in the sea. A letter to the Musical Times from a contributor in December 1924 mentions that they witnessed Parry swimming half a mile from the shoreline and that he was indeed a proficient swimmer.
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