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HEREAS the Rev. Dr. Dwight, was requested by the General Association of the state of Connecticut, that met on the third Tuesday of June, in the year of our Lord, 1797, to revise Dr. WATTS'S imitation of the Psalms of David, so as to accommodate them to the state of the American churches: and to supply the deficiency of those psalms which Dr. WATTS had omitted. And having undertaken this service, and made such alterations and additions, gave notice thereof to the Association, at their meeting in the year 1799; and the Association wishing the advice and concurrence of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in the United States in this important business; the subscribers were appointed by the above bodies, to meet and examine such alterations and additions; and accordingly met at Stamford, on the 10th of June, 1800, and having carefully examined them, approve and recommend said version, as thus altered and amended, to the use of the churches.


John Rogers, John Smally, Cyprian Strong, Isaac Lewis, Joseph Strong, Asa Hillyer, jun. Jonathan Freeman: Committee.

WE also recommend to Dr. Dwight, to select such hymns from Dr. Watts, Dr. Doddridge, and others, and annex them to his edition of the psalms, as shall furnish the churches with a more extensive system of psalmody.





The above is a true copy of the doings of the




Extract from the Minutes of the General Assem bly, A. D. 1802.

WHEREAS, the Rev. Dr. TIMOTHY DWIGHT, by order of the General Association Connecticut, has revised the version of the psalms made by Dr. WATTS, and versified a number omitted by him, and has also made a selection of hymns from various authors, which, together. with the psalms, are intended to furnish a system of psalmody for the use of the churches and families; which system has been revised and recommended by a joint committee of the General Assembly and the General Association of Connecticut heretofore appointed, as well as examined and approved by a committee of this Assembly: the said system is hereby cheerfully allowed, in such congregations as may think it for edification to adopt and use the same.

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AFTER the American revolution, it became early the general wish of the churches and congregations in this country, that such passages in Doctor Watts's version of the Psalms, as were local, and inapplicable to our own circumstances, might be altered and made to accord with those circumstances. In several succeeding instances, such an alteration has been made. The General Association of this state, however, thought proper, at their session in June 1797, to request the subscriber to attempt the work anew. To this request they subjoined another; viz. that he would versify the psalms omitted by Doctor Watts. At the same time, a number of the clergy and laity, of the first respectability, recommended, that an addition should be made to the mumber of Psalms, versified by Doctor Watts in proper metres, for the purpose of preventing a too frequent repetition of them in our worship. They also recommended, that a number of Hymns should be annexed to the PsalmBook, sufficient to complete a system of public Psalmody.

In May, 1798, a motion was made in the General Assembly of the Presbyterian church, for accomplishing the same general purpose; but the General Assembly, being informed, that the business had been taken up by the General Association, concluded to postpone any further measures, relative to it, until they should see the issue of the measures adopted in Connecticut. After this work was completed, a joint committee was appointed to examine, on behalf of both these ecclesiastical bodies, the state and character of the work, and finally to approve, or dis

approve of it, as they should judge proper. Their decision the reader has already seen on a preceding page.

With the request and recommendations above mentioned I have endeavoured to comply. Some account of what I have done is due to the publick.

In making such alterations in Doctor Watts's version, as respected objects merely local, I have, in some instances applied the psalm, or the passage, to the church at large, or to Christian nations generally ; and in others, particularly to our own country. The latter I have done, because every nation, like every individual, feeling its own concern more than any other, will find various occasions of adapting its praise peculiarly to them.

In altering such passages, as were defective, either in the language or the sentiment, I found two objects claiming my attention—the errors of the press, and those of the writer.

The reverence for Doctor Watts is in this country so great, that I shall not be surprised to find myself charged with want of modesty, for suggesting, that he was the subject of such errors. Doctor Watts was a man of great eminence for learning, wisdom, and piety; and in usefulness to mankind has had few equals. As a poet, in writing a flowing happy stanza, familiar without vulgarism, and elevated without affectation or obscurity, he has, perhaps, never been excelled. The design of evangelizing the psalms (if I may be allowed the expression) was one of the happy thoughts, which rarely occur, and will give this version a decided superiority over every other, as a vehicle for the praise of Christians. Still he was not distinguished as a correct writer, and inust undoubtedly be charged with some of the errors, found in his psalm-book. A part of those only

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