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[him-nl] /ˈhɪm nl/
Also called hymnbook
[him-boo k] /ˈhɪmˌbʊk/ (Show IPA)
. a book of hymns for use in a religious service.
of or relating to hymns.
Origin of hymnal
1535-45; (in def 1) < Medieval Latin hymnāle, noun use of neuter of hymnālis (adj.); (in def 2) < Medieval Latin hymnālis; see hymn, -al1, -al2 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for hymn book
Historical Examples
  • Our first hymn book was a little one known as Temple Melodies.

    Sixty years with Plymouth Church Stephen M. Griswold
  • Let's see, now, how does that there line in the hymn book run?

    Sundry Accounts

    Irvin S. Cobb
  • A hymn book was in her hand, opened at the page where she intended it to stay open.

    Riviera Towns

    Herbert Adams Gibbons
  • The psalter has not inaptly been called the hymn book of the second temple.

  • There were present some of the Aitkenites, one of whom purchased a hymn book.

    Wilford Woodruff Matthias F. Cowley
  • He was just as devout with the scythe or the sickle as he was with the hymn book or in the pulpit.

    Wilford Woodruff Matthias F. Cowley
  • The good lady, seeing me, came back and offered me a hymn book.

    Broke Edwin A. Brown
  • She has no hymn book in her hand; she sits there with her ugly sorcery.

    Hans Andersen's Fairy Tales Hans Christian Andersen
  • I would get hold of every hymn book I could find and learn the music.

    Vocal Mastery Harriette Brower
  • She had both a piano and a harmonium, and took great pleasure in playing some of the hymns in our Canadian hymn book.

    The Great War As I Saw It Frederick George Scott
British Dictionary definitions for hymn book

hymn book

a book containing the words and music of hymns


a book of hymns
of, relating to, or characteristic of hymns
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for hymn book



c.1500, imnale, himnale, from Medieval Latin hymnale, from ymnus, from Latin hymnus (see hymn). As an adjective, attested from 1640s. Hymnal measure, a quatrain, usually iambic, alternately rhymed, is so called for being the preferred verse form for English hymns (e.g. "Amazing Grace"), but it has been popular in English secular poetry as well, "though it almost always suggests the hymn, directly or ironically" [Miller Williams, "Patterns of Poetry," Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University, 1986].

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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