Cloisters of Saint John Lateran, Rome. Source:

Friday, 4 July 2014

Something Quintessentially English: London Pride And Noël Coward.

File:Saxifraga x urbium.JPG

English: "London Pride".
LatinSaxifraga x urbium ‘Variegatum’.
Latvian: Lietuvių: dekoratyvinė apvalialapė uolaskėlė.
Photo: 2007.06.02.
Source: Own work.
Author: Hugo.arg.
(Wikimedia Commons)

Fr Timothy Finigan ("His Hermeneuticalness") has previously Posted a very witty, funny, and extremely "British", Post on his Blog, THE HERMENEUTIC OF CONTINUITY, entitled "Weather almost reaches "Rather Tiring" level". Here it is: The Hermeneutic of Continuity: Weather almost reaches "Rather Tiring" level.

Fr's Post put Zephyrinus in mind of this Noël Coward 1941 composition, "London Pride" (see, below).

"London Pride",
sung by Noël Coward.
Available on YouTube at

See if you agree whether the two things match up.

File:Noel Coward Allan warren edit 1.jpg

Portrait for Noël Coward's last Christmas Card.
Photograph by Allan Warren.
Date: 1972.
Source: Own work /
Author: Allan Warren.
(Wikimedia Commons)

Coward wrote "London Pride" in the Spring of 1941, during the Blitz. According to his own account, he was sitting on a seat on a platform of a damaged railway station in London, and was "overwhelmed by a wave of sentimental pride". The song started in his head, there and then, and was finished in a few days.

The song compares the pride of wartime Londoners to the flower, "London Pride", which can grow anywhere and was often found growing on bomb sites.

Coward gave many morale boosting broadcasts to people in wartime London, via the BBC.

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