The Book Of Praise From The Best English Hymn Writers

450 Christian Songs & Hymns Selected & Arranged By Roundell Palmer

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xii                               Preface.
Scotch "Paraphrases," which are included in the " Book of Praise," are compositions, into which, although founded (as many of the best Hymns in all languages are) upon particular passages of Scripture, other elements, for the most part, largely enter. But the Authorized Versions of the Psalms profess to be, in the strict sense of the words, metrical renderings of Holy Scripture. As such, whatever degree of merit they may possess, they differ in kind from ordinary Hymns: and, being universally known, and accessible in every Prayer-Book, it did not seem to the Editor either necessary or appropriate to associate any of them, in this place, with compositions of a different class.
With respect to the translations from Latin and German hymns, which are included in this collec­tion, it also seems proper to explain, that the choice has not been made with any reference to^ the merits of the Latin or German originals ; but solely because the labours of the translator had, in each of these cases, resulted in the production (according to the Editor's judgment) of a good English hymn. From the unavoidable difficulties of translation, this does not very often happen ; and the excellence or popularity of the original, in in its own language, seems to be no reason for in­cluding, in a collection of this kind, an unsuccessful attempt to reproduce it, or even an attempt which, if partially successful, may, nevertheless be wanting in the simplicity, freedom, and ease, of a genuine English composition.

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