Definition of psalter in English:



the psalter
  • 1The Book of Psalms.

    1. 1.1 A copy of the biblical Psalms, especially for liturgical use.
      ‘psalters and hymn books’
      • ‘Early American settlers, especially New England Protestants, adorned their Calvinist-styled worship with psalms taken from metrical psalters brought along from the old country.’
      • ‘This volume fits my twin criteria: solid scholarship, combined with a sense of why the psalter is the prayer book of the synagogue and of the church.’
      • ‘Psalm 137, one of the most evocative in the psalter, speaks from the perspective of the Israelites driven into exile and slavery after the Babylonian destruction of Jerusalem in 587 B.C.E.’
      • ‘The imposition of the Book of Common Prayer in 1549 was accompanied by the publication of various metrical psalters, whose simple four-part harmonizations of psalm tunes allowed the vernacular texts to be heard easily.’
      • ‘Variable psalmody is added to the ‘Little Hours’ during Lent, allowing the psalter to be recited twice each week.’


Old English (p)saltere, via Latin psalterium from Greek psaltērion ‘stringed instrument’.