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Maria Lindsay was born in 1827 in Wimbledon, London, the daughter of the Rev. Henry Lindsay. In 1858 she married the Rev. Canon John Worthington Bliss (1832-1917), the son of a Canadian High Court Judge, who had been educated in England at Harrow and Trinity College, Cambridge, where he graduated BA in 1855. He was for 51 years the Rector of Betteshanger in the Kent coalfield, and was a Canon of Canterbury Cathedral. His wife predeceased him in 1898. Their only child died in infancy, an experience which may have had something to do with this recitative and air about the death of David and Bathsheba's first son. This would make a suitable composition for Proper 18 in Year B, when the death of David and Bathsheba's son is set as the reading from the Old Testament in the Revised Common Lectionary.

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Parish Church of St. Mary-the-Virgin, Betteshanger, near Deal, in Kent
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