The Bay Psalm Book, expected to sell today for up to thirty million dollars, could become the world’s most expensive book. Casey N. Cep looks at the story behind the first English-language book printed in America: http://nyr.kr/If1O3E
“Psalters are an unfamiliar genre for many, even those who worship regularly. Psalm-singing had for centuries been the demesne of a hand-picked choir, but the English Reformation invited the voices of the entire congregation. This printing of the Psalms in verse, set to meter, allowed them to be sung by all. Thus the Bay Psalm Book is a kind of hymnal.”
Photograph by Emmanuel Dunand/AFP/Getty.