[ sahm ]
See synonyms for psalm on
  1. a sacred song or hymn.

  2. (initial capital letter) any of the songs, hymns, or prayers contained in the Book of Psalms.

  1. a metric version or paraphrase of any of these.

  2. a poem of a similar nature.

Origin of psalm

before 900; Middle English psalm(e), s(e)alm(e), psame,Old English ps(e)alm, sealm<Late Latin psalmus<Greek psalmós song sung to the harp, originally, a plucking, as of strings, akin to psállein to pluck, pull, play (the harp)

Other words from psalm

  • psalmic, adjective

Words Nearby psalm Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use psalm in a sentence

  • At times he thought to aggravate his victim's sufferings by singing snatches of favorite psalms from the Huguenot psalm-book.

  • But his fervor was all stage fire, and he would turn in an instant from a denunciatory psalm to a humorous story.

    In Madeira Place | Heman White Chaplin
  • His cries ceased; her thoughts went off into a dreamy psalm of thanksgiving as his soft mouth pulled at her breast.

    The Pioneers | Katharine Susannah Prichard
  • According to this gentleman the Boers were a psalm-singing but hypocritical nation addicted to slave-driving.

    Hyacinth | George A. Birmingham

British Dictionary definitions for psalm


/ (sɑːm) /

  1. (often capital) any of the 150 sacred songs, lyric poems, and prayers that together constitute a book (Psalms) of the Old Testament

  2. a musical setting of one of these poems

  1. any sacred song or hymn

Origin of psalm

Old English, from Late Latin psalmus, from Greek psalmos song accompanied on the harp, from psallein to play (the harp)

Derived forms of psalm

  • psalmic, adjective

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