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SA B B A T H
HYMN AND TUNE BOOK,
THE SERVICE OF SONG IN THE HOUSE
OF THE LORD.
NEW YORK :
BOSTON: CROSBY, NICHOLS, LEE & CO. ;
CHICAGO: ROOT & CADY.
It is the purpose of this work to furnish suitable tunes for the hymns in “TIE SABBATH HYMN Book," and to bring the hymns and tunes together, so that both may be easily seen at the same opening of the volume. The tunes are designed to meet the capacity and wants of congregations, though it is hoped they will be found to possess interest and appropriateness for choirs. Every hymn contained in the SABBATH HYMN BOOK will be found here, and in connection with each hymn, or at the same opening of the book, one or more appropriate tunes. All the tunes are also published in a separate volume, entitled the SABBATH TUNE BOOK. The series therefore consists of three volumes :
Tue SABBATH HYMN BOOK, containing Hymns alone. Tue SABBATH HYMN AND Tune Book, containing Hymns and Tunes. THE SABBATH TUNE Book, containing Tunes alone. Two principal methods have prevailed, to a greater or less degree, in the Service of Song in Christian worship; that of the whole Congregation, and that of a select Choir. The Congregational was the primitive method, and the only one known in the earlier history of the Church. The method of singing by a choir came into the Church at a later period, with wealth, power, and worldly greatness, and it has been her attendant rather in temporal prosperity, than in poverty and adversity.
At the time of the Reformation, Congregational Singing had become extinct, and the more artistic manner of Choirs, consisting mostly of an inferior order of the clergy, singing in a language unknown to the people, had taken its place. Luther, Calvin, Knox, and others, took early measures to rescue the singing service in public worship from the hands of the clergy, and to reinstate it as an exercise for the people. As the abuses of the Romish church had led to the rejection of chanting (the primitive form of Church Song) the Psalms were translated, or hymns were written in a stanzaic form, and adapted to a simple but dignified form of melody, with special reference to the capabilities of the people. The union of the whole assembly in the exercise was regarded as essential. Other liturgical forms were rejected ; but this new one of a metrical Psalmody, for the people's simultaneous utterance of praise and prayer, was received with great favor, and almost universally practiced. It was no attempt on the part of the Reformers to introduce an artistic manner of song, but, on the contrary, a very plain one, a highway" of Psalmody, in which “the wayfaring man, though a fool, should not err.
The Congregational niethod, thus restored to the churches, was brought to this country by the Protestant Fathers. It continued to be their only method for about a century and a half. It is not surprising that during this period, amidst the deprivations which the new settlements experienced, att ntion to song should have been neglected, nor that, neglected by generation after generation, t! , ability for it should have been well nigh lost. In the early part of the last century the very lor condition of the singing in public worship began to attract the attention of some of the friends vi religion, and measures were taken by a few of the leading clergymen and others for reform. Hitherto all the singing in the American churches had been unisonous, the melody only having been sung; but in 1720 a book of tunes, in three parts, “Cantus," “ Medius" and " Basus," was published by Rev. Thomas Walter. The harmonizing of the tunes in parts undoubtedly grew out of the fact that the more elaborate service of choirs had always taken that form both in the Lutheran and the English church. In the Protestant churches of Europe generally, metrical Psalmody continues to this day to be sung, as it was originally, in unison, and it is at least doubtful whether parts in harmony for the choir and unison for the congregation, would not still be the best arrangement for Church Song. This new arrangement of tunes in parts led to the formation of choirs. At first, they were introduced only as helps to Congregational Singing, but this gradually yielded, as it had done before, and the new method advanced with sure and steady progress, until toward the close of the last century it had become the almost exclusive method of Church Song.
And now, within ten or fifteen years, Congregational singing is again attracting attention, and many persons, especially those who look for a higher religious power in Psalmody, are turning to it, as a remedy for the evils which have grown out of the exclusive method of choirs, and as promising to restore to the Church the almost lost religious aid of song.
It is to be regretted that some, in their zeal for Congregational singing, have supposed it necessary to set their faces against choirs, and have even gone so far as to reject the services of such associations. The fact that choirs have, in a great degree, failed to present a method of song truly religious in its influence, is not to be attributed wholly to them; but probably quite as much to those clergymen and people who have mistaken a mere musical excitement for the "quickening and raising up of the affections to God."