The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #63182   Message #1024709
Posted By: mouldy
25-Sep-03 - 02:36 AM
Thread Name: origin: Nkosi Sikeleli Afrika
Subject: RE: Nkose Sikelele Africa
I have a newspaper clipping from the Independent (8th may 1984) which has the trble line of the dots and the lyrics in English. It's in B flat, or maybe the relative minor.

I quote from the article: '"Nkosi Sikelel' i Afrika" is a Christian hymn composed in 1897 by Enoch Sontoga, a teacher at a Methodist missionary school in Klipspruit, Johannesburg...is said to have had an excellent voice and wrote songs for his pupils to perform...none of his songs were published, but he collected them in an exercise book, and musicians and teachers borrowed the texts from his widow...wrote the words for only the first stanza, which are in his native Xhosa...the version sung today emerged from additions made by two other black South African writers...In 1912 the hymn was plucked from obscurity by John Dube, a zulu headmaster from Durban, who founded the African National Congress...One of the co-founders of the ANC, Sol Plaatje, recorded the song to a piano accompaniment on 16th October 1923 through a company called Zenophone...it is also the national anthem of Zimbabwe,Zambia, Tanzania and Namibia, each of which sing translated versions...the reasons why Sontoga's hymn has passed beyond South Africa's borders is that the words make no mention of South Africa - rather they call on God to bless all of Africa and hear the voices of her people...'

Nkosi Sikelel'i Africa

Lord bless Africa
May her horn rise highup;
Hear thou our prayers
And bless us

Descend O Spirit
Descend O Holy Spirit

Bless our chiefs;
May they remember their Creator,
Fear Him and revere Him,
That He may bless them.


I knew that clipping would come in useful one day!

Andrea