Monday, August 9, 2010

"Nagasaki no Kane" Performed by Fujiyama Ichirō

I've never once studied Japanese, but can recognize "Heaven" (天国) from the occasional Kanji amongst the incomprehensible Hiragana squiggles in the subtitles, and "rosario" (Katakana: ロザリオ) from the Portuguese in the lyrics.

The song was composed as the title track for the movie The Bells of Nagasaki (1950), based on the novel of the same title by Dr. Takashi Nagai, "a physician specializing in radiology, a convert to Roman Catholicism, and a survivor of the atomic bombing of Nagasaki, Japan," whose "subsequent life of prayer and service earned him the affectionate title 'saint of Urakami.'" The Society of Saint Pius X-District of Asia offers this from 1951, after his death from leukemia — Dr. Takashi Nagai’s Funeral Address.

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Omnes Sancti et Sanctæ Coreæ, orate pro nobis.