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The Introduction of Hymns into the Church of England has been, and is still, considered by a large proportion of its ministers and members as an unnecessary and unwarrantable departure from its principles. But, upon inquiry, the fact appears to be otherwise. Let us glance at the custom of the Christian Church, beginning -with the example of its illustrious Founder, "God manifest in the flesh," on whom as on a sure foundation the Church is built After instituting the Holy Supper, and partaking of it with his disciples, he taught them to sing a hymn; for we have no ground to suppose that any thing was done on that occasion except by his immediate direction: "And when they had sung an hymn, they went out into the Mount of Olives." Matt. 26, 30. St. Paul, who wished all the Churches to follow him as he followed Christ, in his Epistle to the Colossians, said, "Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another, in Psalms, and Hymns, and Spiritual Songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord." Col. iii. 16.
Pliny, the younger, writing to his sovereign the Emperor Trajan, A. D. 107, concerning the first Christians, says, that " They were accustomed to sing among