Hymns for Divine Worship, in the Oriya language

Hymns for Divine Worship,
in the Oriya Language.

Cuttack: Printed at the Orissa Mission Press, 1844.

(BRA1031)

Oriya is the principal language of the eastern Indian state of Odisha, on the subcontinent’s east coast near the Bay of Bengal. One of many official languages in India, it is also spoken in parts of West Bengal, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, and Andra Pradesh. The New Testament was first printed in Oriya in Serampore in 1809, under the supervision of Protestant missionaries there. In addition to this 1844 hymnal, early Oriya printing in Cuttack included the Gospels and the Acts in 1839, the New Testament in 1840, and the Old Testament in 1842–1844 revised by Amos Sutton (1798–1854).

Sutton also compiled this volume of hymns, most “simply transferred from the Bengali, with such alterations as the Oriya required.  Others are translations of English hymns, or suggested by English hymns, and a few are original.”  Divided into two sections, the hymnal also includes an appendix with Oriya versions of “Divine Songs for Children,” primarily based on works by Isaac Watts (1674–1748). The volume concludes with an index in Oriya and a separate subject index with headings in English.

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Hymns for Divine Worship, in the Oriya language