My Shepherd is the living Lord

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jamesdowden's picture

Does anyone know why the Sternhold version of Psalm 23 (not to be confused with Isaac Watts' LM version with the same first line) is showing the copyright box? He died in 1549.

On a more trivial point, both of these hymns also have duplicate authorities at the moment that ought to be folded in to the main authority for each hymn:

  • Sternhold – this has a trivial word-order variant in line 2 (not an improvement either: it creates a couple of ugly trochees!) – I don't think it merits a separate authority, even though we're using the second line to distinguish the two hymns
  • Watts – this is just a mistake – the second line given in the authority has been taken from the next hymn on the page!

In the other direction, if the information in this instance of the Sternhold version is correct – i.e, it actually is a composite with Isaac Watts' CM version, rather than just being a case of someone confusing the two hymns and misattributing it (sadly there's no page scan, and I don't have a copy of the New Century Hymnal to check) – then that really ought to be split off into a separate authority. Thinking about it, it may be this instance that's creating the copyright mess!


Realised immediately after posting that that the New Century Hymnal is borrowable at the Internet Archive. That instance is indeed a composite of Sternhold and Watts CM. It basically pastes Sternhold's first verse over Watts' first one (a creative solution to the "he said Jehovah" problem!). It also changes "go and come" to "come and go" in the last verse, ruining the rhyme. So not sure if this should be an authority of its own, or treated as an instance of My Shepherd will supply my need (despite its clever obliteration of the first verse); the least correct solution in my mind is the status quo of having it as an instance of Sternhold.

I merged the Watts mistake into the Watts LM version of Psalm 23. The composite text in "The New Century Hymnal" is actually not copyrighted. Usually, we go by the first line or first verse in deciding where to locate a composite text, however, this one is mostly Watts and Sternhold's text is modernized enough that it can be its own authority.

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