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Psalter, English.

When other hymns were frowned on by some Ref., esp. in Gt. Brit., metrical versions of Psalms began to come into their own. Robert Crowley (ca. 1518–88; b. Gloucestershire, Eng.; educ. Oxford; printer; exiled under Mary* I; returned to Eng. under Elizabeth* I; held several positions as vicar and prebendary) is gen. regarded as the 1st to render the whole Psalter into Eng. verse (1549). Ca. the same time, perhaps as early as 1548, appeared the 1st ed. of 19 Psalms versified by Thomas Sternhold (ca. 1500–49; b. Southampton or near Blakeney, Eng.; educ. Oxford; groom of the chambers to Henry* VIII and Edward* VI); 2d ed. ca. 1549/51, with 18 more Psalms versified by Sternhold and 7 by John Hopkins (d. 1570); enlargement continued at Geneva during the reign of Mary I; this Genevan Psalter was put into use in Eng. on accession of Elizabeth I. Partial and complete versions of Psalms versified multiplied in Eng. and Scot. The 1st book pub. by Puritans in New Eng. was the “Bay Psalm Book” (1640), characterized by rigorous literalism. A New Version of the Psalms of David Fitted to the Tunes Used in Churches, by Nahum Tate (1652–1715; b. and educ. Ireland; hymns include “While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks by Night”) and Nicholas Brady (1659–1726; b. Bandon, Eng.; educ. Oxford and Dublin; held various positions) appeared 1696. Others who have versified Psalms include J. Addison,* T. Dwight* (1752–1817), J. Keble,* H. F. Lyte,* J. Montgomery,* I. Watts.*

Edited by: Erwin L. Lueker, Luther Poellot, Paul Jackson
©Concordia Publishing House, 2000, All rights Reserved. Reproduced with Permission

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Content Reproduced with Permission

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