Treasure No 65: Hymnody and Belonging

Part 2: The Music of Hymnody   [This article is condensed from part of the dissertation presented by Mr Deans in November 1998 for his M.Th. degree at Westminster College, Oxford. The original title was ‘Hymnody and Belonging: an Examination of Effective Uses of Christian Hymns in Ministry to the Confused Elderly’. However, the present article is of more general …

Treasure No 64: The English Hymn (review)

The new book certainly deserves to achieve the classic status of Benson’s earlier work, but for different reasons. Despite an interval of eighty-two years the difference in historical scope is somewhat less than one might expect. Both writers naturally start with the metrical psalmody of the Reformation and Benson concluded with a detailed look at what was, for him, very …

Treasure No 63: The Hymnologist’s Bookshelf

Actually, our title is a touch inaccurate since, as before, we write not for the dedicated scholar but for the ordinary hymn-lover and hymn-user who probably has neither time nor inclination to delve into specialist libraries. We therefore confine attention to items that are fairly readily accessible. And, if only to keep the survey to a reasonable length, we can …

Treasure No 62: Ten Laws of Hymnal Committees

There is material here for massive research and a multi-volume series. Here is simply a taster of the delights lying ahead for the keen student. Compared with some veterans of this society, my experience is scanty. I was on one such committee for ten years which seemed like a hundred; that was a major hymnal. I have chaired or have …

Treasure No 59: The Charming Sound of 18th-Century Hymnody

To describe the Saviour of the world, the Good Shepherd, as having ‘engaging Charms’ may sound strange to twentieth-century ears. Charm, in this cynical and hard-faced age, has become a suspicious quality, something that we rate less highly than involvement, integrity and passion, which often go hand-in-hand with an absence of charm. To the student of eighteenth-century hymnody, however, the …

Treasure No 58: John Wilson 1905–92

John Whitridge Wilson was born on 21 January 1905 in Bournville, near Birmingham. His father, George Bailey Wilson, was a solicitor, who, while engaged by the chocolate manufacturers Cadbury’s, had met Margaret Whitridge Davies working in the firm’s staff refectory. They married, and John was their first-born. From his father he probably derived his passion for accuracy and meticulous attention …