Psalms, Hymns, & Spiritual Songs Online Video

The videos below bring subject-matter experts from Emory and elsewhere to describe the significance of some of the items in the exhibit. These videos can also be viewed in the gallery. We invite visitors to use smartphones or tablets to snap the QR codes in the cases or on the printed guides to access and download the exhibit catalog or to explore topics in greater detail via the in-depth resources provided. An interactive console is located at the rear of the gallery.

Links to Video:




 

Professor M. Jennifer Bloxam of Williams College offers an introduction to the Pitts Theology Library’s 1497 Pontificale Romanum. Professor Bloxam describes how the book would have functioned for official ceremonies in the church. She also notes the beautiful hand-created illuminations of this book. Professor Bloxam places this important work in the context of developing Catholic liturgy and its relationship to the role of sacred music in early Protestant worship.

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Professor Stephen A. Crist, of Emory University’s Department of Music, introduces Pitts Theology Library’s copy of the Achtliederbuch, the first Lutheran hymnal, published in 1524. Dr. Crist introduces (and sings!) the contents of the book, exploring the influence of this early work on congregational singing in Protestant traditions.

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Professor R. Allen Lott of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary introduces the Ainsworth Psalter, an important collection of prose and metrical Psalms, used by the Pilgrims. Professor Lott describes the Separatist movement as the context for Ainsworth’s translations, and he identifies the challenges that Ainsworth faced in creating this work. Lott also describes the use of these translations and their accompany hymn tunes, and he places this impotant book within the developing history of Protestant psalmody and hymnody.

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Richard Manly Adams, Jr., Systems and Reference Librarian at the Pitts Theology Library, introduces a debate between English satirist George Wither and the Stationers’ Company, the publisher of the Sternhold and Hopkins metrical Psalms. Dr. Adams discusses the context of Psalms and hymn singing in 16th and 17th century English protestantism, and explores Wither’s hymn collection published under royal privilege and the Stationers’ Company’s refusal to append it to the Sternhold and Hopkins Psalms.

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Professor Joel M. LeMon of the Candler School of Theology speaks about the metrical Psalms of John and Charles Wesley and their introduction of Jesus into the Psalms. Dr. LeMon shares a poem from Samuel Wesley, the brother of John and Charles, which speaks out against this practice.

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Professor Joel M. LeMon of the Candler School of Theology discusses John Wesley’s love for the Psalms, and yet his concern about the violent imagery in some Psalms. Professor LeMon demonstrates the creative ways in which Wesley translated the Psalms to redirect focus from human to spiritual enemies.

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Professor Robin A. Leaver of the Yale Institute of Sacred Music provides an introduction to the development of hymn collections in the English evangelical church, focusing on the Pitts Theology Library’s copy of Martin Madan’s collection of hymns used at Lock Hospital in London. Leaver explains the role of such collections and their importance in the development of Methodist worship and hymnody. He explains the provenance of this unique copy, once owned and annotated by Charles Wesley, Jr., the son of the prominent Methodist hymn writer.

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Jesse Pearlman Karlsberg, Woodruff Fellow and Doctoral Candidate in the Graduate Institute of Liberal Arts at Emory University, introduces shapenote hymnody. He focuses on the origins of this method of writing music and talks about its development in the 19th and 20th centuries, highlighting the Southern Harmony and the Sacred Harp.

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Professor Robin A. Leaver of the Yale Institute of Sacred Music introduces the Pitts Theology Library’s collection of scrapbooks from British Methodist hymn writer Fred Pratt Green. Professor Leaver, who was a friend of Fred Pratt Green, explains the importance of Green’s hymn writing and his influence on hymnody in Protestant worship. Professor Leaver also describes the types of material collected in the scrapbooks and connects this gift with Green’s relationship to Emory University, from which Green received an honorary degree in 1982.

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