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Christian song is increasingly recognized as one of the most valuable agencies in the expression of Christian truth and the quickening of the Christian life. It affords utterance to the world-wide fellowship of the spirit. It gives embodiment to the great historic convictions of Christendom, and sounds the note of prophesy for the yet unrealized future. Its music serves to heighten the impression made by Christian verse, furnishes a medium for choral utterance, and gives beauty and impressiveness to Christian worship.
It is hardly possible, then, to overstate the importance of the use of the very best in Christian hymnology. The present collection is the result of a long-continued endeavor to bring together the greatest hymns of many lands and of many centuries, and to associate with these an unusual number of the most helpful of the recent hymns voicing the growing devotion to a Kingdom of God that is to come in home and school and nation, in social service for city and country, in missionary heroism giving itself to our own land and all lands, in international brotherhood and universal peace.
Great pains have been taken to link these hymns with the choicest tunes in use in America, England, Germany and other countries. While careful regard has been paid to preserving established associations of tunes with hymns, new adaptations have been made which it is believed will give fresh interest and dignity to the use of many valuable hymns, thus distinctly enriching the service of song.
As the name of this hymnal implies, it is prepared with the conviction that all worthy and enduring hymnology is fundamentally an expression of praise in thought and life, and that while a wide range of human experience is included, the hymnal should constantly encourage the substitution of "the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness.”
The Hymnal of Praise is specially designed for use in schools, colleges and universities; it is also fitted to meet the needs of churches desiring a hymnal which is distinctly educative in character while covering the entire field of church and Christian activities. It is the result of many years of study and observation on the part of the editor, supplemented by the experience of many others, some of them authorities in music and others leaders in educational and Christian work, who have contributed to the development of this collection. Among the large number of experts who have rendered invaluable help and encouragement, special indebtedness is expressed to Professor H. C. Macdougall, Mus. D., of Wellesley College, Professor Sumner Salter of Williams College, President E. A. Alderman of the University of Virginia, Secretary H. F. Cope of the Religious Education Association, Chaplain R. C. Knox of Columbia University, Rev. Dr. Henry Burton of England, President Rush Rhees of the University of Rochester, President J. A. Blaisdell of Pomona College, Professor J. L. Erb of the University of Wooster, Professor K. P. Harrington of Wesleyan University, President J. H. Gulliver of Rockford College, Professor A. R. Tyler of Beloit College and President E. C. Sabin of Milwaukee-Downer College.
For the best results in using this Hymnal it is essential that the one conducting the services should systematically select a wide range of hymns in addition to his personal favorites. Frequent conferences with the leader of the singing will be advantageous. Excellent effects are attained by the occasional antiphonal use of hymns, alternate verses being sung by choir alone and by choir and congregation together.
There are no tunes in this collection which cannot be sung with pleasure by any congregation that will give a little pains to becoming acquainted with those to which they are unaccustomed. Unison singing will often aid in gaining familiarity with chorales and other stately tunes. The melodies are almost all of them simple and written in practicable compass. If an unfamiliar hymn and tune are sung a few times by the choir, as an anthem or response, the congregation insensibly becomes acquainted with them and will then sing them with ease and added enjoyment.
The Responsive Readings, Prayers and Chants will be found helpful in contributing variety and interest to the daily and Sunday services of schools and churches.
May this Hymnal be found worthy to serve in some measure that Kingdom which will have come completely when
The whole world send back the song
EDWARD DWIGHT EATON.
Sincere thanks are due to the following persons who have given free permission for the use of copyright hymns: -to Professor K. L. Bates, Rev. Dr. L. F. Benson, Mr. N. R. Best, President J. A. Blaisdell, Rev. W. R. Bowie, Rev. Dr. H. Burton, Rev. H. L. Crain, Right Rev. W. C. Doane, Dr. M. E. Gates, Mrs. R. W. Gilder, Rev. Dr. W. Gladden, Mrs. John Hay, Dr. Caroline Hazard, Rev. Dr. F. L. Hosmer, Professor G. Huntington, Mr. Rudyard Kipling, Rev. Dr. W. P. Merrill, Rev. Dr. F. M. North, Rev. Dr. E. P. Parker, Professor G. H. Palmer, Dr. R. W. Raymond, Rev. E. W. Shurtleff, Rev. Dr. L. H. Thayer, Dr. Henry van Dyke, Rev. Dr. T. C. Williams; to Messrs. D. Appleton and Co. for the use of hymns by W. C. Bryant; E. P. Dutton & Co. for hymns by Bishop Phillips Brooks; The Houghton Mifflin Co. for hymns by J. G. Whittier, H. W. Longfellow, Samuel Longfellow, O. W. Holmes, J. R. Lowell and E. R. Sill; and to Messrs. Charles Scribners' Sons for a hymn by Rev. Dr. M. D. Babcock; also to The Congregationalist for hymn 363 and to The Continent for hymns 73, 343 and 392.
1 For the use of copyright tunes obligation is expressed to Professor G. W. Chadwick, J. H. Gower, Mus. D., Rev. Dr. W. G. Horder, Professor H. B. Jepson, Professor Frank Lynes, Professor H. C. Macdougall, Mus. D., Rev. Dr. W. P. Merrill, Professor C. H. Morse, Rev. Dr. E. P. Parker, Professor H. W. Parker, Mus. D., Mr. W. W. Rousseau, Professor Sumner Salter, Rev. W. W. Sleeper, Mr. G. C. Stebbins, Professor H. J. Storer, Mrs. L. S. Tourjée-Estabrook, Rev. Dr. H. B. Turner, Bishop J. H. Vincent, Mr. L. W. Watson; also to The Century Co., The Continent, The Presbyterian Board of Publication, The Unitarian S. S. Society, and Messrs. Thomas Nelson & Sons.