Friday, February 11, 2011

The UPAEP Symbols Series 2010- The National Anthem of Ecuador

"¡Salve, Oh Patria!" ("We Salute You, Our Homeland") is the national anthem of Ecuador. The lyrics were written in 1865 by the poet Juan León Mera, under request of the Ecuadorian Senate; the music was composed by Antonio Neumane. However, the anthem was not officially adopted by the Congress until September 29, 1948.

In 1865, the Argentine musician Juan José Allende, in collaboration with the Ecuadorian Army, preseented to the National Congress a musical project for the lyrics by José Joaquín de Olmedo, but it was not well received. In November of this year, at the express request of the president of the Senate, Nicolás Espinosa, the Ambateño poet Juan León Mera Martínez, who was then the secretary of the Senate, wrote and submitted the lyrics of the National Anthem. These lyrics were then sent, with Congressional approval, to Guayaquil, so that Antonio Neumane would set them to music. This is the hymn that would later be officialized as the definitive national anthem.

On January 16, 1866, the complete version of the lyrics by Juan León Mera were published in the Quiteño weekly El Sud Americano. In 1870, the national anthem premiered in the Plaza Grande (Plaza de la Independencia facing the Palacio de Gobierno), performed by the 2nd Battalion and the Compañía Lírica de Pablo Ferreti, directed by Antonio Neumane. The music was in the key of C flat major. The current introduction of 16 measures was composed by Domingo Brescia and Enrique Marconi in 1901. Today, the hymn is performed in the key of E major.

The stamp above features the national anthem of Ecuador with notation and lyrics issued in 2010 (UPAEP series on national symbols).