A lyrical poem found in the King James Version of the Holy Bible is an example of a psalm.
Origin of psalm
- Middle English from Old English from Latin psalmus from Greek psalmos from psallein to play the harp pāl- in Indo-European roots
From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition
- From Middle English salm or psalme, from Old English psealm, later reinforced from Old French psalme (modern French psaume), both from Latin psalmus, from Ancient Greek ÏˆÎ±Î»Î¼ÏŒÏ‚ (psalmos, “the sound emenating from twitching or twanging perhaps with the hands or fingers, mostly of musical strings") (from ÏˆÎ¬Î»Î»Ï‰ (psallo, “to make a sound by striking, touching, plucking, rubbing, twanging, or vibrating")), but later in New Testament times the meaning of ÏˆÎ±Î»Î¼ÏŒÏ‚ (psalmos) evolved from its Classical meaning of "a tune played to the harp" to a more general tune that could be played with any instrument; even a song sung with or without their accompaniment. By the Byzantine Period, it lost all of its instrumental characteristics.