Catholic Church; and there is every reason to suppose that in its substance it proceeds from inspired authorities. In our own Service it has been separated by our Reformers into three distinct portions.
Hymns, however, being of the nature of praises, cannot be altogether brought down to that grave and severe character which, as being direct addresses to God, they seem to require; and this is their peculiar difficulty. To praise God specially for Redemption, to contemplate the mysteries of the Divine Nature, to enlarge upon the details of the Economy of Grace and yet not to offend, to invoke with awe, to express affection with a pure heart, to be subdued and sober while we rejoice, and to make professions without display, and all this not under the veil of figurative language, as in the Psalms, but plainly, and (as it were) abruptly, surely requires to have had one's lips touched with a "coal from the Altar," to have caught from heaven that "new song" "which no man could learn, but the hundred and forty and four thousand which were redeemed from the earth"— the virgin followers of the Lamb.
Our Church, with the remarkable caution which she displays so often, has not attempted it. She has received the Psalms and Songs from Scripture; and, rejecting the Roman Hymns, has substituted in their stead, not others, but a metrical version of the Psalms. This abstinence has led on the one