- a book of the Bible, composed of 150 songs, hymns, and prayers. Abbreviation: Ps.
- a sacred song or hymn.
- (initial capital letter) any of the songs, hymns, or prayers contained in the Book of Psalms.
- a metric version or paraphrase of any of these.
- a poem of a similar nature.
Origin of psalm
Examples from the Web for psalms
As for the Psalms, the Bible never says that David wrote them.
Actually, it would be about a millennium after David lived that anyone proposed that he was the author of the Psalms.
The Psalms remain the language of joy and sorrow for people everywhere.
The girl pressed up against my elbow is fervently reading Tehilim (Psalms) by the light of her phone.Attending Rabbi Ovadia Yosef’s Funeral as a Secular Jewish Woman
October 9, 2013
The Hebrew word for “waterspout,” as used in the book of Psalms, could also be translated as “waterfall.”Benjamin Franklin, America’s First Storm Chaser
April 14, 2013
They had gone to the same church, sat in the same pew, sang the psalms from the same book.The Hunted Outlaw
Darnley requested a book of Psalms, that he might read himself to sleep.The Historical Nights' Entertainment
She had had advantages at least equal to those which David the Shepherd had—and he wrote the Psalms.David Elginbrod
For what did oor faithers dee if it wasna for the psalms o' Dauvit?
That is, no' like Dauvit's psalms—but it's upliftin' for a' that.
- (functioning as singular) the collection of 150 psalms in the Old TestamentFull title: The Book of Psalms
- (often capital) any of the 150 sacred songs, lyric poems, and prayers that together constitute a book (Psalms) of the Old Testament
- a musical setting of one of these poems
- any sacred song or hymn
Word Origin and History for psalms
Old English psealm, salm, partly from Old French psaume, saume, partly from Church Latin psalmus, from Greek psalmos "song sung to a harp," originally "performance on stringed instrument; a plucking of the harp" (cf. psaltes "harper"), from psallein "play on a stringed instrument, pull, twitch" (see feel (v.)).
Used in Septuagint for Hebrew mizmor "song," especially the sort sung by David to the harp. Related: Psalmodize; psalmody. After some hesitation, the pedantic ps- spelling prevailed in English, as it was in many neighboring languages (German, French, etc.), but English is almost alone in not pronouncing the p-.