HERE SEEMS TO BE A LACK of a definitive list available to describe the Hymn Geek. I find mentions of Chant Geeks and Liturgical Geeks, but search for Hymn Geek and you get a hundred and one Geek Hymns.
Maybe this is fair enough. Hymns have a subordinate role to play in Sacred Music, and yet, as Sir R R Terry, inaugural Master of Music at Westminster Cathedral, observes:
“Of all forms of church music, the one which seems to have wielded an influence out of all proportion to its intrinsic worth is the vernacular hymn.” – Richard R Terry, 1927.
Hymns are influential, popular and full of history and trivial details, making a fertile ground for susceptible personalities to develop their geekish tendencies.
So, on to the list, signs that you might be a Hymn Geek:
1. You know the tune for Fr Faber’s O Purest Of Creatures and it’s not the Lourdes Hymn. (Speaking of the Lourdes Hymn, you are aware that the accent in the word Ave should be on the first syllable.)
2. There are hymns you have read in hymnbooks, but haven’t heard sung in a liturgical setting.
3. You can sort hymns by meter, age and country of origin.
4. You know Hyfrydol is not a cooking oil.
5. You care about verses being omitted.
I’m sure you can find many more manifestations of Hymn Geek-ness and I would love to hear them. The comment box is open.