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Concord Hymn by Ralph Waldo Emerson


19 April 1836


The "Concord Hymn" by Ralph Waldo Emerson is a song or a poem about the first shot that was fired by the minutemen in Concord, Massachusetts, in 1775. The song eloquently explains the volatile time in American history when the patriots fought the first battles against the British in the American Revolutionary War. "Concord Hymn" was first published as a leaflet at the 1837 dedication of the Minuteman Monument commemorating the Battles of Lexington and Concord. Emerson's poem is written in four stanzas to be sung as a hymn. [The Seattle PI]

HYMN
SUNG AT THE COMPLETION OF
CONCORD MONUMENT, APRIL 19, 1836

By the rude bridge that arched the flood,
Their flag to April's breeze unfurled,
Here once the embattled farmers stood,
And fired the shot heard round the world,

The foe long since in silence slept,
Alike the Conqueror silent sleeps,
And Time the ruined bridge has swept
Down the dark stream which seaward creeps.

On this green bank, by this soft stream,
We set to-day a votive stone,
That memory may their deed redeem,
When like our sires our sons are gone.

Spirit! who made those freemen dare
To die, or leave their children free,
Bid time and nature gently spare
The shaft we raise to them and Thee.