Historical Dictionary Of Sacred Music by Joseph P. SwainHistorical Dictionary Of Sacred Music by Joseph P. Swain

Historical Dictionary Of Sacred Music

byJoseph P. Swain

Hardcover | October 11, 2016

Pricing and Purchase Info

$116.14 online 
$123.50 list price save 5%
Earn 581 plum® points

Prices and offers may vary in store


In stock online

Ships free on orders over $25

Not available in stores


Sacred music is a universal phenomenon of humanity. Where there is faith, there is music to express it. Every major religious tradition and most minor ones have music and have it in abundance and variety. There is music to accompany ritual and music purely for devotion, music for large congregations and music for trained soloists, music that sets holy words and music without words at all. In some traditions-Islamic and many Native American, to name just two--the relation between music and religious ritual is so intimate that it is inaccurate to speak of the music accompanying the ritual. Rather, to perform the ritual is to sing, and to sing the ritual is to perform it.This second edition of Historical Dictionary of Sacred Music contains a chronology, an introduction, appendixes, and an extensive bibliography. The dictionary section has over 800 cross-referenced entries on major types of music, composers, key religious figures, specialized positions, genres of composition, technical terms, instruments, fundamental documents and sources, significant places, and important musical compositions. This book is an excellent access point for students, researchers, and anyone wanting to know more about sacred music.
Joseph P. Swain has taught music history and theory at Phillips Academy and Colgate University for more than 25 years. He writes music criticism and critical theory and performs regularly as church organist, violist, and choir director. He has written eight other books about music.
Title:Historical Dictionary Of Sacred MusicFormat:HardcoverDimensions:402 pages, 9.35 × 6.3 × 1.38 inPublished:October 11, 2016Publisher:Rowman & Littlefield PublishersLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1442264624

ISBN - 13:9781442264625

Look for similar items by category:


Table of Contents

Foreword (Jon Woronoff)Preface to the First EditionPreface to the Second EditionChronologyIntroductionThe Dictionary Appendix I: Texts of the Roman Catholic and Anglican Rites Appendix II: Shema and KaddishBibliographyAbout the Author

Editorial Reviews

Expanding on the first edition published a decade ago, this second edition adds definitions for over 100 new terms, a portion of which address expressly non-Christian sacred music topics. The content transferred from the first edition, however, remains largely unchanged in the new release. Both works feature a classified bibliography with a table of contents. The bibliography in the second edition is significantly longer and includes more recent works. Swain, an organist and church music director, has prepared a solid ready-reference dictionary of both sacred music concepts and musical terms that are pertinent but not confined to sacred music. There are also entries on particular musical works and composers. The content addresses most broad traditions within Christianity, with entries on other religious traditions, including Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, and others. . . .Summing Up: Recommended. All readership levels.