Excerpts from "Five Variants of Dives and Lazarus":
This is a small work for string orchestra by Ralph Vaughan Williams, based on the well-known folk tune Dives and Lazarus and first performed at the 1939 World's Fair in New York City. One of the variations uses a form of the tune traditionally associated with Maria Martin.
Dives and Lazarus or Lazarus and Dives is a parable attributed to Jesus that is reported only in the Gospel of Luke (Luke 16:19-16:31). It is also known as "The Rich Man and the Beggar Lazarus." The wealthy man is traditionally called "Dives", after the Latin word for "rich man" (though in the Biblical text he is only referred to as the rich man). The story has been a favorite for artists and theologians, as it is the most vivid account of the afterlife to be found in the New Testament.
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