This book is a new edition of Christopher Smart's massive verse translation of the Psalms. Alhough the Psalms are much less well-known than his Song to David or Hymns and Spiritual Songs, the translation was intended as the centerpiece of a project devoted to poetically reforming the liturgy. In this work he aimed to meet the demand, expressed by many in the mid-18th century, for a new Anglican metrical psalter for regular use in the divine service written in the spirit of Christianity'. The editor's introduction and commentary include discussion of the Christianizing tendencies of Smart's Psalm translations, comparison of Smart's methods with those of earlier Psalm versifiers, demonstration of the connections in idea and expression between Smart's Psalms and mid-eighteenth-century Anglican Evangelicalism, and the use in the Translation of New Testament themes and images.
'Marcus Walsh ... provides a concise and scholarly introduction which is invaluable in illuminating the nature of the controversy which surrounded translation of the Psalms in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.'
Journal of Ecclesiastical History