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THE HYMNS IN THE BODY OF THE WORK BEING TAKEN FROM THE BOOK OF PSALMS
SUPPLEMENT, FROM VARIOUS SOURCES.
Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1859, by
J. B. LIPPINCOTT & CO. in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the United States for the Eastern District of
This book is not so much an experiment as it is the result of an experiment. About three years since, the compiler, hoping to aid the people of his pastoral charge in their singing, selected from the Assembly's collection some three hundred and fifty of the Psalms and Hymns, to which he proposed to confine himself in the services of the Church, both public and social. At the same time, after an extensive collation of Church-tunes, he selected about one hundred and thirty, and designated them to these hymns, taking the Presbyterian Psalmodist as a general guide. The arrangement was submitted to a revision at the hands of some of the best critics, and was adopted by the Church session. The tunes were made accessible to the choir, and the plan was inaugurated-which has been since pursued—of always singing the hymn announced to the tune chosen for it. So satisfactory has the plan proved, so much has it contributed toward the general singing of the congregation, that the compiler has been encouraged to revise the arrangement, amending and enlarging it as experience has taught was desirable, and now to publish it. He hopes for still more encouraging results when the families of his congregation shall have the music of the Church in their homes and can teach their children to use it, when the lecture-room shall be supplied and the pews of the church permanently furnished with the book containing it, and when the same hymns shall have been so long and so often sung to the same tunes that both have become familiar, and that in each case the hymn and its tune have become so firmly associated that the one shall suggest the other.
If any other congregations should be disposed to use this selection, and should receive a like benefit, it will be a matter of rejoicing to have thus contributed to the advancement of the cause of Sacred Praise.
ADVANTAGES. Some of the advantages of this arrangement have been intimated. Many persons can read simple Church-music; and to such it will often be of use to have the music before their eyes in connection with the hymn sung. But, further than this, it is obviously a great advantage for congregational singing to be limited to a fixed number of suitable tunes, to have these carefully adapted to the hymns used, and then always to sing the same words to the same music. The majority of tunes used in our churches are unsuited to congregational singing. The change of one set of tunes for another, so often made by the introduction of new tune-books or by a change of musical leaders, prevents the congregation from becoming familiar with any. Professional leaders often violate sacred associations in their selection of tunes for hymns; their selections, being often hastily made, are seldom judiciously made; and the singing of the same hymn to various