Schubert - Ave Maria

Schubert's Ave Maria isn't the most popular Ave Maria out there, but it's certainly close.

It's a beautiful irony that the nation's favourite settings of the Ave Maria are composed by Bach and Schubert, yet neither of them actually wrote an Ave Maria. Schubert's music was actually written to the words of The Lady of the Lake, by Sir Walter Scott but translated into German and called Ellens Third song.

It was written as part of a set of Scott songs when the composer was twenty-eight and contains the words 'Ave Maria', but only in reference to the prayer itself. And while this particular Ave Maria can't claim to be quite as popular as Bach's, it certainly rivals it for beauty.