Blake’s final and longest epic in illuminated printing constitutes a recapitulation and summation of his multiple interests, ranging from his own mythology to biblical history, from sexuality to epistemology, and from the Druids to Newton. The cast of characters is vast, but Los (the artist’s imagination at work in the material world), Jerusalem and Albion (the female and male portions of divided humanity who must be reunited), the nature goddess Vala, and Jesus play major roles. The poem is divided into four chapters, each addressed to a different audience: the Public, the Jews, the Deists, and the Christians. Jerusalem concludes with a vision of human consciousness in a post-apocalyptic universe. Portions of The Four Zoas, Blake’s long manuscript poem, are repeated (often with little revision) in Jerusalem.(Text from the William Blake Archive, with thanks.)
We have here two great and very different recordings. The first is by Tim Bruce, the second by the Sydney group. The Sydney group’s recording is almost complete – it lacks the last three plates – while this does not detract from the great work to be enjoyed, it still begs for completion – would you be able to create a fitting last section?
If you wish to download the mp3, please press the link, and then press either ‘Ctrl S’, or right mouse click and ‘save as’; on a Mac use ‘Cmd S’