Henry Croswell et al. in St Thomas's Church, Southwark, London - 23 May, 1880, 11:00 AM

from Transcript of the diaries of Henry Croswell, page 208:

There was Communion afterwards for which a bell was rung.


O[rgan]. – None.  The Church has been abandoned by the Hospital.

H[ymns]. – Two only from Hymns A. & M. - [pitch-pipe lately used Tate and Brady.]

C[hoir]. – Twenty Charity boys led by the Parish Clerk.  They were untrained and out of tune.

[The congregation numbered] 7 – Two men, two women, one lad and two girls.

…   more >>
cite as

Henry Croswell, Transcript of the diaries of Henry Croswell. In British Library, number 000826807, C.194.c.113 , p. 208. https://led.kmi.open.ac.uk/entity/lexp/1551090193803 accessed: 23 June, 2024 (By permission of the British Library.)

location of experience: St Thomas's Church, Southwark, London


Henry Croswell
assurance clerk, Sunday School teacher

Listening to

hide composers
Anglican church music performed by the choir of St Thomas's Church Southwark
hymns selected from 'Hymns A&M' performed by the choir of St Thomas's Church Southwark
communion bell

Experience Information

Date/Time 23 May, 1880, 11:00 AM
Duration 1 hours 40 minutes
Medium live
Listening Environment in the company of others, indoors, in public


Henry Croswell (1840–93) kept a record of his visits to churches in London over a period of more than twelve years (1872–85). He made methodical notes about the number of clergy, the churchmanship, the congregation, the sermon and the church architecture, as well as commenting on the music that he heard (the organ, the hymns and the choir). The above listening experience has been extracted from one of these records. ‘Hymns Ancient and Modern for use in the Services of the Church’ (1861; Appendix, 1868; Second edition, 1875; Supplement, 1889) was envisaged as an anthology of the best hymns available and became the most widely-used hymnbook in the Church of England during the late nineteenth century. William Henry Monk (1823–89) was musical editor. Croswell’s observation about the pitch-pipe and Tate and Brady is cryptic (the editorial square brackets around the phrase were added by the transcriber, who was apparently puzzled by it]. ‘A New Version of the Psalms of David, Fitted to the Tunes Used in Churches’ by Nahum Tate and Nicholas Brady (1696) had become the standard psalter in use throughout the Church of England by the early nineteenth century. Some editions also included hymns. Did Croswell mean that ‘Hymns A&M’ had recently replaced Tate and Brady as the hymnal in use at St Thomas’ Church? An alternative reading might be that the pitch-pipe, commonly used to give the note to singers in the absence of other musical instruments, was disguised as a psalter. Such a practice is known to have been observed in the US by some Puritan churches that disapproved of the use of instruments in church.

Originally submitted by lcc5 on Mon, 25 Feb 2019 10:23:14 +0000
Approved on Tue, 07 Jul 2020 13:49:56 +0100