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to each other that many of their vibrations than small congregations; and the massive occur simultaneously, harmonize, or sound pleas- harmonies which roll grandly through the dim antly; while sounds so related that their vibra- aisles and reverberating arches of the cathedral, tions rarely coincide in time, produce unpleasant may not always be adapted to the use of the or discordant sounds.
thousands of chapels, cottages, and kitchens, Thus besides melody and rhythm, the addition from whence arise the voice of prayer and of harmony affords exquisite delight to the cul- the song of praise. Hence individual tastes tivated ear. All these elements pertain to music and critical canons must yield to the logic of in itself considered.
experience and the control of circumstances; But in addition to these, thought, intelli- and by such standards must all hymns and gence, and emotion are embodied in the words music be judged. of the hymns which are sung. And these No person can judge of the quality of a hymn elements, melody, rhythm, harmony, thought until he has read it, comprehended its meaning, and sensibility, when appropriately combined in and felt its power. So no person can judge of sincerity and truth in the worship of Almighty the quality of a tune until he has sung it, or God, are acceptable to him as a sacrifice of has heard it sung as it should be sung. True praise. And all these elements unite to affect hymns reach the intellect, and enter into the both the intellect and the emotions of others, depths of human thought.' True music charms influencing men both in mind and in body, the ear, and awakens the emotions of the soul. sometimes awakening intense feeling, and thrill- It would be difficult to construct an automaton ing the whole being with rapture or with pain. which would utter the wail of distressed infancy,
Musical sounds can, in a general way, be re- or breathe the soft whispers of sympathy and corded in musical characters; but the record is affection; still less could such a machine sound but partial and imperfect. The notes are mere forth the songs of penitence which rise from skeletons of the melodies and harmonies which broken hearts, or the hymns of hope which voice they represent. There are not only differences the emotions of the expectant church. There in pitch and tone, but there are differences in is a subtile quality in true music which utterly the quality and shade of sounds, which written eludes the skill of mere mechanical performers; notes do not convey. Hence the same tune may and tunes which spring from the heart's deepest be sung with mechanical correctness according recesses may be condemned and rejected by perto the written notes, by two different persons, sons who have never heard them, or who, while the impression produced by it in the two though they may have tried to sing and perform cases may vary widely.
them mechanically, have no just comprehension No ear is so dull that it fails to detect the emo- of the ideas and emotions which they embody. tions and characteristics expressed by the differ- Says the eminent musician Czerny, in his Letent tones of the human voice. Joy, grief, love, ters to a Pupil: hate, anger, scorn,-every emotion, has its ap- “Many pupils run into the error of attemptpropriate expression, even if no articulate sounding to decide the nerits of a composition before can be distinguished. There are voices which they are able to play it; from this it happens have tears in their tones, and which thrill and that many excellent pieces are contemptible to melt the hearts of those that hear them. There them, while the fault lies in their playing them are voices which utter strains of celestial glad- in a shambling, incorrect, and unconnected ness, and there are voices which are cold and manner. In this manner you must consequently dull and empty as the wind that blows. Hence often have lost that exquisite enjoyment which before a hymn or tune can be sung as it should the ingenious and elaborate works of the great be, and throw its spell over the hearts and souls masters offer to you." of the listeners, the Spirit of God must breathe through soul and body, so that the singing shall
INSTRUMENTS AND VOICES. not be merely finished acting, but the natural expression of honest conviction and heartfelt Any discussion of the general question of emotion and sympathy.
instrumental music would be foreign to our No one style of music can be accepted for present purpose; but a few facts are worthy of religious worship to the exclusion of all oth- our notice.
Differing circumstances require differing Any person of musical taste who will listen songs and tunes. Nature full of melody, to the pure, sweet voices of natural singers, but all music is not the same. There is music singing à hymn with which they are thoroughly in the boom of swelling surges and in the and sympathetically familiar, to a tune which at murmur of rippling brooks; in the rolling thun- the same time is being played on a keyed instruder and in the gentle zephyr; in the roar of ment, can perceive that the clear and thrilling tre tornado and in the warliling of the birds vocal tones do not blend with the coarser sounds that sing among the branches. And so, true of the musical instrument. An instrument and acceptable worship may arise from great might be so tuned as to play with absolute corcongregations and from little flocks; from lordly rectness times in a single key, but it is utterly palaces and lowly cots; and the music must be impossible with the twelve keys in an instrument suited to the circumstances and the occasion. to imitate the seventy-two distinct tones produced Large assemblies ordinarily sing more slowly in the same octave by the human voice, sing
ing in the various keys employed in modernnent musical critic, “We know not how it is, music.* Hence most instrumental music but ap- but there is no such thing as a frivolous tune proximates the true standard. An ordinary in a minor key." If this be so, perhaps the inkeyed instrument may be far more correct in tone troduction and use of some of those tunes may than ill-trained and discordant voices, but the serve to displace others which savor more of frivstandard of musical excellence is the pure human olity than of devotion. voice, unspoiled and unperverted, in its natural There is a wondrous power in divine truth ness and strength, and susceptible of the won- when embodied in sacred song and poured with derfully varied modulations needful to express the burning pathos of appropriate music into every emotion of the human heart.
human ears and human hearts. Such an instruHence, while a tune may be full of power mentality should be carefully guarded against and sweetness when sung by one whose heart is lightness and triviality, and should be kept for in tender sympathy with the strain, and who is the Master's use, and for the service of Him in thoroughly familiar with the melody, the same whose presence the morning stars sang together, tune, if sung carelessly, or played upon a keyed and before whom seraphim with veiled faces instrument, may lose all its delicacy and pathos, chant their songs of ceaseless praise. and its notes may fall in leaden dullness upon the unsympathizing ear. Besides, while some
THE MUSIC IN THIS HYMNAL tunes depend upon their melodies for their comes from many nations and from distant lands, beauty, others are far more effective in their and different ages, but a large proportion of it harmonies, and until all the parts are sung, and is distinctly American. sung correctly, and sympathetically, and heard The latter half of the eighteenth century, in the same manner, no one can pronounce defi- with its revolutions and convulsions,—the birth nitely concerning the merits or demerits of such pangs of a new era, --was marked in America by music.
an outburst of sacred song; and numerous volMINOR TUNES.
umes of music, original and selected, were isThose who find their highest ideal of music sued from the press, and had wide circulation. in the interblending of the imperfect and some
Following the custom of English composers what inharmonious notes of keyed instruments, many tunes were in those days written in the which sometimes drown concord, discord, and fuging style; and as no one person could sing sense, in the jarring thunder of their accompa- and permanent use.
them alone, they were thus unfitted for popular niment, may not appreciate tunes which require
But though defective in for their proper expression a melody and pathos arrangement and harmony, through the lack of foreign to such instruments, and also to voices dies of singular power and beauty. A multitude
musical science, some of those tunes had melowhich are habitually trained to sing in unison of these compositions have been consigned to with them. But there are singers whose hearts have been broken and made contrite before the have been crowded out of use by other tunes,
the lumber rooms of a past generation, and Lorl; who have known afflictions, and sorrows, which though technically more correct, often and tears; whose paths lie amid conflicts and
Some temptations; who can sing and appreciate such embody less of the spirit of true music.
Their hearts, attuned to the harmonies of the ancient tunes, however, notwithstanding of the universe, drink in those minor strains their defects, have held their ground, entwining which float in the songs of birds, the sighs of about the hearts of the people, refusing to be breezes, the sobs of brooks, and the moaning of forgotten, and living enshrined in devout and
earnest souls. the billows; and which everywhere in nature
Such tunes, sung from the heart, seem like snatches of that wondrous undertone reach the heart; they do not die; they live; they in which “the whole creation groaneth and do not wear out; they wear in. They linger in travaileth together until now. Such persons, his shop, the ploughman in the field, and the
the memory, and are sung by the workman in having the first-fruits of the Spirit, and groan- housewite in the kitchen and by the cradle. ing within themselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit the redemption of the body; while sing- The young disciple learns them in the glow of ing of joys and sorrows, of mercy and judgment, them when trembling on the verge of life.
The aged pilgrim rejoices in of pardon offered and sins forgiven, will find use for many a strain which, though 'despised and They comfort the living, encourage the dying, rejected by the worldly and careless, will most and console the mourners as they weep above
the dead. appropriately express the feelings of the followers of Him who was a man of sorrows and ac
But time works changes, and the voices that quainted with grief. Such music also seems
quavered and rung through the fuges and minors
of a century ago are silent. We shall hear especially adapted to the solemn yet joyful worship of Almighty God. There is an abundance them no more until they sing beside the river of of light and airy music for the light-hearted, the water of life. Many of their tunes have light-headed, and light-footed; but said an emi- died with them, but it has been thought well to
preserve and revive a few of those strains which * For information on this subject consult Atheism were the comfort of the saints of God in and Arithmetic, by H. L. Hastings, pp. 37-55. years gone by, so rearranging them that their
objectionable features may be eliminated, while | comely for the upright,” and it is only when the unchanged melodies may still do service in the God opens our lips, that our mouths can truly house of prayer and praise. Some of these old show forth his praise. minor tunes may not be acceptable to those who Said the Psalmist, “I will sing of mercy and sing mechanically and artistically, who “ren- judgment, unto thee, O Lord, will I sing.” der”” words which nobody can understand, and However much the singing of the present day who “execute” tunes which touch no hearts. may make mention of mercy, most of it has Persons who have never been heart-broken with little reference to that “eternal judgment,” contrition for sin, and have never sung the new which is one of the“ principles of the doctrine song which is put in the mouths of those whose of Christ.” The Holy Spirit convinces the feet are on the Rock, will not be attracted by world “of sin, of righteousness, and of judgsuch music. But those who have heard these ment.” And if we would have that Spirit tunes in their sweetness and power in the years attend our songs, those songs must conform to gone by, will sympathize with the aged matron the Scriptural pattern. When the time now who, listening to some of the strains she had occupied with music that is too often light and heard and sung for almost fourscore years, ex- frivolous, or formal and artistic, shall be declaimed, “Do not let those old tunes die!" voted to devout worship, penitent supplication,
and solemn song, we may hear less of the deadNOTES OF EXPRESSION.
ness and decay that too often prevails in our In this hymnal no notes of expression are time, and may hope to see more genuine, solid, appended either to hymns or tunes. There can and permanent revivals of the work of the be no proper expression till there is something Lord, and find more use for hymns that are to express, and any expression not founded in Scriptural and solemn, and less occasion for reality seems inappropriate to the sincere wor- the lighter and more evanescent strains which ship of God. Wherever there is song there so often usurp the place of other more desirable will be expression, whether it be the expression hymns. of devotion or of indifference, of ignorance or Said an eminent instructor to a noted singer, Inspiration. Hence all such matters are left to “If I could make you suffer for two years, you jhe study and intelligence of those who conduct would be the best contralto in the world.” Said and engage in the service of sacred song. If the great reformer, “Sorrow hath pressed many the heart be filled with sincere devotion, it will sweet songs out of me." The Son of God, the be easy to learn the lesson of praise; without Christian's great exampler, was made perfect this there may be trills and carols, harmony through suffering; and so long as his people and rhythm, melody and motion; but all will be continue with him in his temptations, so long empty, void and vain, unless we are touched by will strains of joy and sorrow, prayer and the kindlings of an inner fire, and can “sing praise, express the mingled emotions of their with the spirit and with the understanding also.” hearts. And so long as true believers confess Without this even the words which have been themselves to be pilgrims and strangers on the inspired by the Holy Ghost will be tame and earth; so long as the whole creation groaneth powerless when uttered by profane and careless and travaileth in pain together until now; so lips. No form of words can insure genuine long as we who have the first fruits of the devotion. No marks of expression can show Spirit, groan within ourselves, waiting for the how to make an empty formality seem a living adoption; to wit, the redemption of the body; so reality. Worldly songs may be the fittest ex- long will songs which voice the emotions of pression of the emotions of worldly singers, for those who are “sorrowful yet always rejoicing,” where there are no worshipers, why should there have a place in the worship of the Lord and in be even the semblance of worship?
the hearts of his saints. In singing hymns which express the feelings Some of the hymns contained within these and condition of the singer, we are to guard pages have been written in the midst of afflicagainst all insincerity and untruth. Though a tion, imprisonment and exile; in sickness, inhymn may sometimes be properly sung, as ex- firmity and pain; in hunger, cold and nakedpressing the emotions and voicing the thoughts ness; and surrounded by tumults, persecutions of another, yet the thoughts and emotions and distresses. Some of them have been sung should be those with which we have sympathy, by saints whose lips have kissed the martyr's and concerning which we have experience. stake and chain, and whose hands have shriveled Songs which declare the praise and glory of in the fagot fires. Some have been sung in God are always true, if our hearts are loyal to hours of awful peril, when every earthly hope Him. Everything that has breath, above, be- had failed, and nothing but God remained. neath, and around, is called upon to praise the Such hymns, that have been born out of the Lord. To Him every knee shall bow and every throbbing heart of the Church of God, and have tongue confess, and we need not hesitate to been wafted upward by the dying breath of join in such praise; but to sing hymns express- martyred saints, may not attract those worldive of experiences of which we know nothing, lings who utter solemn words with thoughtless and of thoughts and feelings which are foreign tongues, but they will be prized by that church to our lives and our hearts, is not consistent whose leader was a man of sorrows," and with simplicity and godly sincerity. “Praise is whose highest glorying is in their Saviour's cross.
WORLDLY AND SECULAR MUSIC | by constant repetition. They become too famil
iar, are sung mechanically, and are then cast cannot adequately express the depths of Chris- aside to make room for something new. A tian thought, and the emotions of the renewed larger variety of hymns, sung to different tunes heart. Yet it does not seem needful to utterly at different times, may relieve monotony and reject from Christian service all music of secu- minister to devotion and spiritual profit. And lar origin. There are doubtless many melodies the employment of a wider range of sacred which should be excluded from the house of hymns may open to many minds fresh views of prayer. Some of them have profane and evil truth, and lead the well-instructed scribe to associations, from which they have not been bring forth out of the sacred treasure-house purged. Others are light and frivolous, ex
“ things new and old.” pressing and exciting feelings and sentiments It is by no means intended or desired to not in harmony with the spirit of the gospel, confine choirs or singers to the use of the tunes and moving the feet rather than the heart. printed in connection with the hymns in this Others, whatever their origin may have been, Hymnal, nor_even to the tunes contained in have long ago made their way into use and use- this book.* Tastes will differ, and adaptations, fulness in the Church of Christ. So the secular however carefully made, may be susceptible of music of one generation sometimes becomes the improvement under differing circumstances. sacred music of the next, and while the lips of The suggestions of alternate tunes upon the the worshipers have been purged, the strains pages will often be found useful; for it is too they once sung have also been purified and enno- much to expect a leader of the singing always bled by the power of divine grace. Nor need to select, on the spur of the moment, a fitting we hesitate to claim the choicest productions of tune for any hymn that may be announced. human genius, and bring them as an offering to The aim has been to furnish an ample supply of Him of whom, and for whom, and by whom, are hymns, with the tunes so adapted that under all things. The earth is the Lord's and the ordinary circumstances any of the hymns can fullness thereof, and they who are fed by his be sung, leaving singers entirely free to select hand and protected by his providence may well more fitting music from this or other books at pay some homage to their Maker. In whoseso- their pleasure. ever hands the gifts of Providence or of genius The prevailing custom of using two books; may remain, they are still the Lord's, and may one official, stately, classic, and somewhat cumbe fitly devoted to his service. So the taberna- brous, from which a few persons sing artisticle in the wilderness was adorned by Egyptian cally on Sundays; another less pretentious, gold; the spoils of the conquered heathen beau- brighter, and more animated, out of which the tified the temple in Jerusalem; and before the people more generally sing in the social services, feet of Him who subdues all things to him- is not without disadvantages. Many worshiping self, the kings of Sheba and Seba may lay their assemblies can have but one book, and this is offerings, and the daughter of Tyre may also be likely to be of the cheaper and lighter character. there with a gift. And so even the strain A man noted for his connection with such which once lingered on the lips of the chief of books is reported to have said that he did not sinners may yet be so consecrated and hallowed need more than three good tunes to sell a and ennobled, that it may become “a Psalm book. Books prepared on this principle are for the chief musician,” in the temple of the necessarily ephemeral, notwithstanding thei: Holy One of Israel.
acknowledged excellencies. The tendency ofter The dignity and sincerity of true worship is to pass over hymus marked by sense, solidity excludes all lightness and frivolity. Yet dig- and solemnity, and take something new which nity must not degenerate into mere formality may lack these qualities, making use of tune: and frigidity. The ideal Christian is not which are as appropriate for the dance hal an embodiment of unimpassioned propriety. as for the house of prayer, and as welcome His life is rich in varied emotions, and is in the theater as in the gospel meeting. These marked by trials severe and joys sublime. are supposed to attract the people; but do they Grief and gladness alternate in his experience, save them when they are attracted? especially like lights and shades upon a landscape. Though if they be joined with hymns which express no sorrowful he is always rejoicing.
penitence for sin, no prayer for pardon, no joy ABUNDANCE AND VARIETY
in God, and no experience of his grace; and
which are evidently the work of persons who are afforded to both readers and singers by are “unskillful in the word of righteousness.” the numerous hymns contained in this volume. No one person may relish everything pro * It is not our purpose that these precise notes be
Let each church keep its vided, but the table is so spread that there need sung in all the churches. be neither scantiness nor monotony. And thus own notes according to its book and use. a few excellent and much-used hymns may be the notes of a hymn have been changed, and it is
myself do not listen with pleasure in cases where rescued from the contempt that is likely to sung to us in a different way from what I have been result from too great familiarity.
used to from youth.-LUTHER'S Preface to the Good hymns and tunes often fall into disuse Funeral Hymns.
It is no light thing for a large assembly to they could modulate their voices, and blend learn a hymn or tune. It is the work of months. them in strains of purest harmony. Many of the tunes in common use were never
SINGING IN AN UNKNOWN TONGUE. half learned. They do not bury themselves in the heart, and linger in the memory. Some of Among all the gifts with which the primitive them are not learned because they are not church was endowed, the gift of singing in an worth learning. Young people readily catch up unknown tongue is never once mentioned. the new songs contained in a new book. The Christians were to covet to prophesy, and forbid older people do not learn them as easily, and not to speak with tongues; yet it was expressly the book is cast aside before they are mas- ordered that if no interpreter were present, he tered. The hymns and music most familiar to who had the power to speak with tongues was older people are left out of the book, and of to“ keep silence in the church.”
This injunccourse cannot be used. The singing of the tion seems to be entirely neglected by those choir is frequently too wonderful for common who sing in unknown tongues at the present people. It is high, they cannot attain to it. day, and consequently, whether they sing with Consequently the singing is broken in two in the spirit or not, their “understanding is unthe middle, the old people clinging to a few of fruitful;' and it is to be feared that some of the vanishing hymns and tunes which have them are as ignorant as to what they are singcome down from other days, and the young ing about, as their hearers are of what they are pursuing the endless chase after novelties in the singing. last new book. New hymns must be con- If in the church an apostle would rather speak stantly provided, because those last introduced five words with his understanding, that he are out of date, worn out, or so destitute of might teach others, “than ten thousand words poetry and power that no one wishes to hear in an unknown tongue,” which “no man underthem longer. And when new books are used standeth, we can easily estimate how valuable the old hymns are discarded, though the young singing with the spirit” and “ with the undermen and maidens may keep pace with the standing also ” must be, as compared with that new issues, the old men and children are often which conveys no sense whatever to those that deprived of the privilege of song. Many of hear. The prophet Amos predicted a day when the new tunes consist of rattling choruses, and the songs of the temple shall be howlings; fuges more or less intricate, which can only be but this does not imply that such inarticulate sung properly by trained artists, and as no one noises should now interrupt and distract the can sing them alone, they are useless for private worshipers of the Lord, nor are such exercises an worship and personal devotion, and so can only appropriate substitute for the service of Chrisbe used under the most favorable circumstances tian praise in the assembly of the saints of God. and conditions.
The sensitiveness of singers to criticism is One object in the preparation of Songs of well known, but it is not an indication of suPilgrimage has been to bridge over this chasm perior wisdom to hate instruction and despise between the young and old, and if possible re- reproof. And the ability to suggest improveunite them in the worship of God, by furnish- ments in singing is by no means limited to ing them a book which may provide a sufficiency the professional singers or musical instructors. of hymns and tunes both old and new, to meet | The man with defective hearing, who listens to the wants of the two classes mentioned, giving a humdrum of confusing voices, among which us something of the life and brightness of new he strives in vain to distinguish one articulate hymns so acceptable to the young, combined or intelligent sound, might easily instruct many with the solidity and stability of those undying a choir as to the importance of singing with strains which are more pleasing to maturer minds; distinctness of utterance; and many a refined -the whole being intended to minister to true woman or intelligent man who is not specially devotion and spiritual and intelligent worship skilled in musical matters, or whose voice with
The best effects in singing are not attained by advancing years has lost something of the mela constant succession of new tunes. If the ody of youth, could, by the exercise of common time spent in half learning new tunes which sense, or a knowledge of the principles of readprove practically worthless, were employed in ing and pronunciation, offer suggestions which learning old tunes which have been neglected, would greatly improve the singing of many a crowded out, or carelessly and heartlessly sung, choir and congregation. And if such suggesour music would be better, and our worship tions were sought rather than repelled, they none the less acceptable. For purposes of wor; would doubtless be given in a spirit of hearty ship, hymns and tunes are of little value until and sympathetic friendliness, and would be atthey are thoroughly familiar. So long as sing-tended with the best results. ing is a performance requiring careful attention
UNITY IN CHRISTIAN PRAISE. and conscious effort, we miss the best results. The leader of a noted band of vocalists never This Hymnal is prepared for the use of the would allow them to use either books or instru- Churches of Christ,—for "all that in every ments in their rehearsals or public exhibitions, place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our They must master both words and music, and Lord, both their's and ours."
." For, however then, with nothing else to take their attention, Christians may differ concerning doctrines and