National Mêlée

    The Brazilian national anthem has a story that involves Don Pedro I,
    the Portuguese prince who declared Brazil independent from Portugal and then became the
    first emperor of the new country.
    By Alessandra Dalevi

    Together with the French La Marseillaise, Brazil’s national anthem gets top
    votes from musical experts for the excellence of its melody. While to the French it is a
    "call-to-arms" battle hymn, the Brazilian anthem is a pastoral song talking
    about "smiley pretty fields". What some experts are not able to explain is why
    the author of such a musical jewel, Francisco Manuel da Silva (1795-1865), did not produce
    other praiseworthy pieces. The answer might be that da Silva did not compose the Hino
    Nacional Brasileiro, that is, he borrowed from his master, Father José Maurício
    Nunes Garcia (1767-1830), a priest who excelled as a classic composer.

    This controversy is not new, and accusations that the Brazilian national anthem was
    plagiarized have become more frequent since 1995 when "Matinas de Nossa Senhora da
    Conceição," a religious composition was sung during Juiz de Fora’s (state of Minas
    Gerais) Colonial Music Festival. The audience, made up mostly of music experts, was amazed
    to discover in the homage to the Virgin Mary, a good portion very similar to the national
    anthem. Chronologically is quite possible that this borrowing really happened and several
    experts have been trying to establish the truth. Although not dated, the
    "Matinas" was written in 1821 or 1822.

    In an interview with weekly newsmagazine Veja, maestro Marcelo Antunes Martins,
    who will soon release the first commercial recording of "Matinas", accuses Silva
    of crass plagiarism: "Soon after composing "Matinas", Nunes Garcia became
    sclerotic. He was incapable of recognizing his own compositions. Francisco Manuel da Silva
    took advantage of his master’s disease to copy the theme."

    For maestro Sergio Dias, however, there is no case of plagiarism, but a mere homage
    from a student to his master. Others say that there was only a coincidence since both
    composers, Nunes Garcia and his disciple, were influenced by the Italian opera through the
    companies that started going to Brazil in 1821.

    The Brazilian national anthem has a colorful story that involves even Don Pedro I, the
    Portuguese prince who on September, 7, 1822 declared Brazil independent from Portugal and
    then became the first emperor of the new country. It was Dom Pedro, a composer himself,
    who wrote the first Brazilian national anthem, a song still sung in schools now known as "Hino
    da Independência" (Independence Hymn). As for the official anthem it only got
    its definitive lyrics in 1922, thanks to the sometimes convoluted poetic style of Joaquim
    Osório Duque Estrada (1870-1927). In one of the older versions, Ovídio Saraiva de
    Carvalho e Silva made references in his text to the monarchy and to a wise reign.

    Hino Nacional Brasileiro

    Music by Francisco Manuel da Silva
    Lyrics by Joaquim Osório Duque Estrada

    Ouviram do Ipiranga as margens plácidas
    De um povo heróico o brado retumbante,
    E o sol da liberdade, em raios fúlgidos,
    Brilhou no céu da pátria nesse instante.

    Se o penhor dessa igualdade
    Conseguimos conquistar com braço forte,
    Em teu seio, ó liberdade,
    Desafia o nosso peito a própria morte!

    Ó Pátria amada,
    Salve! Salve!

    Brasil, um sonho intenso, um raio vívido,
    De amor e de esperança à terra desce
    Se em teu formoso céu risonho e límpido
    A imagem do Cruzeiro resplandece
    Gigante pela própria natureza
    És belo, és forte, impávido colosso,
    E o teu futuro espelha essa grandeza,

    Terra adorada,
    Entre outras mil,
    És tu, Brasil,
    Ó pátria amada!
    Dos filhos deste solo
    És mãe gentil,
    Pátria amada,

    Deitado eternamente em
    berço esplêndido,
    Ao som do mar e à luz do céu profundo,
    Fulguras, ó Brasil, florão da América,
    Iluminado ao sol do Novo Mundo!

    Do que a terra mais
    Teus risonhos, lindos campos
    têm mais flores,
    "Nossos bosques têm mais vida,"
    "Nossa vida" no teu seio "mais amores"

    Ó pátria amada,
    Salve! Salve!

    Brasil, de amor eterno seja símbolo
    O lábaro que ostentas estrelado,
    E diga o verde-louro dessa flâmula
    – paz no futuro e glória no passado –

    Mas se ergues da justiça a clava forte,
    Verás que um filho teu não foge à luta
    Nem teme, quem te adora a própria morte,

    Terra adorada!
    Entre outras mil,
    És tu, Brasil,
    Ó pátria amada

    Dos filhos deste solo
    És mãe gentil,
    Pátria amada,

    Brazilian National Anthem

    The peaceful banks of the Ipiranga
    Heard the resounding cry of a heroic people,
    And the dazzling rays of the sun of liberty
    Bathed our country in their brilliant light.

    If with strong arm we have succeeded
    In winning a pledge of equality,
    In your bosom, oh liberty,
    Our hearts will defy death itself!

    Oh adored Fatherland,
    Cherished and revered,
    All Hail! All Hail

    Brazil, a sublime dream, a vivid ray
    Of love and hope to earth descends, and
    Where in your clear, pure, beauteous skies
    The image of the Southern Cross shines forth.
    Oh country vast by nature,
    Fair and strong, a brave colossus,
    Your future mirrors this greatness.

    Oh land adored
    Above all others,
    It’s you, Brazil,
    Beloved fatherland!
    You are the gentle mother
    of the children of this soil,
    Beloved land,

    Laid out eternally in the
    splendor of nature,
    In the sound of the sea and the light of heaven,
    May you shine, oh Brazil, flower of America,
    Illumined by the sun of the New World!

    More flowers put forth in your fair,
    smiling fields
    Than in the most gorgeously
    reputed lands;
    "More life is to be found in our groves,"
    "More love in our lives" in your embrace.

    Oh adored Fatherland,
    Cherished and revered,
    All Hail! All Hail!

    May the star-scattered banner flown by you,
    Brazil, become a symbol of eternal love,
    And may the green-gold flag proclaim always
    – Peace in the future and glory in the past –

    But if the mighty sword of justice is drawn forth,
    You will perceive your children, who adore you,
    Neither fear to fight, nor flee from death itself.

    Oh land adored
    Above all others,
    It’s you, Brazil,
    Beloved fatherland!

    You are the gentle mother
    Of the children of this soil,
    Beloved land,


    Hino da Independência

    Music by Dom Pedro I (1798-1834)
    Lyrics by Evaristo da
    Veiga (1799-1837)

    Já podeis da pátria
    Ver contente a mãe gentil,
    Já raiou a liberdade,
    No horizonte do Brasil

    Brava gente brasileira,
    Longe vá temor servil,
    Ou ficar a Pátria livre,
    Ou morrer pelo Brasil

    Os grilhões que nos forjava,
    Da perfídia astuto ardil,
    Houve mão mais poderosa
    Zombou deles o Brasil

    Brava gente …

    Não temais ímpias falanges
    Que apresentam face hostil
    Vossos peitos, vossos braços,
    São muralhas do Brasil

    Brava gente, …

    Parabéns, ó Brasileiros!
    Já com garbo juvenil,
    Do universo entre as nações
    Resplandece a do Brasil

    Brava gente, …

    Independence Hymn

    You already can, children
    of the motherland,
    See how happy is the gentle mother
    Freedom has already risen
    In the horizon of Brazil

    Brave Brazilian people
    Get rid of your servile fear
    May the fatherland be free
    Or we will die for Brazil

    The shrewd ploy of treachery
    Forged shackles for us
    There was a more powerful had
    Brazil mocked them

    Brave people

    Do not fear impious phalanxes
    That present hostile demeanor
    Your chests, your arms,
    Are Brazil’s walls

    Brave people…

    Congratulations, oh Brazilians!
    With juvenile gallantry
    Among the universe nations
    That of Brazil sparkles

    Brave people…


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