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George Sainton Kaye Butterworth
1885 - 1916
Great Britain, England
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G.S.K. Butterworth
George Butterworth (12/07/1885 - 05/08/1916), an English composer. He was born in London to a well-to-do family. His father, Sir Alexander Butterworth was a solicitor and later General Manager of the North Eastern Railway, headquartered in York, where George grew up before going to school at Eton. His musical talent as a composer was already apparent while at Eton. In 1904 he went up to Trinity College, Oxford to read Greats but found that music became more and more important to him, especially after meeting up with Cecil Sharp and Ralph Vaughan Williams. After Oxford, he taught for a year at Radley, then studied for a short time at the Royal College of Music, then concentrated more or less full time on collecting folk songs, sometimes with Vaughan Williams.
On the outbreak of World War I in August, 1914, he quickly joined the Durham Light Infantry as a Lieutenant in the 13th Battalion. During his year in the trenches, he was "mentioned in dispatches" for outstanding courage, won the Military Cross for his defence of a trench that was subsequently named for him, and led a raid during the Battle of the Somme. The raid was successful but Butterworth was killed by a sniper's bullet. It was August 5th, 1916. His memorial is at Thiepval.
Requiescat
Period:Expressionism
Composed in:1911
Musical form:song
Text/libretto:Oscar Wilde (1854 - 1900)
Label(s):Hyperion CDA 66261\2
The text of this song is written by Oscar Wilde (1854 - 1900). Explanation of the titel: "Requiescat in pace" (sometimes: R.I.P.) stands for "may he/she (his/her soul) rest in peace" referring to a dead person.

Requiescat

Tread lightly, she is near
Under the snow,
Speak gently, she can hear
The daisies grow.

All her bright golden hair
Tarnished with rust,
She that was young and fair
Fallen to dust.

Lily-like, white as snow,
She hardly knew
She was a woman so
Sweetly she grew.

Coffin-board, heavy stone,
Lie on her breast.
I vex my heart alone,
She is at rest.

Peace, Peace, she cannot hear
Lyre or sonnet,
All my life's buried here,
Heap earth upon it.

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Oscar Wilde
(text)