Search just our sites by using our customised search engine
Unique Cottages | Electric Scotland's Classified Directory

Click here to get a Printer Friendly PageSmiley

The Anecdotage of Glasgow
Rev. Dr. Wm. Ritchie of St. Andrew's Church and his Violin

THE Rev. Dr. William Ritchie of St. Andrew’s Church, Glasgow, was exceedingly fond of music, and had taught his church to admire both vocal and instrumental music combined. They determined, if possible, to secure an organ, to assist in aiding the praise in public worship, but were not allowed to do so by the Presbytery, which was of the "opinion that the use of organs in the public worship of God is contrary to the law of the land and constitution of our Established Church."

This did not, however, prevent Dr. Ritchie cultivating his favourite art. He loved the violin especially, and had both a big and a small one, which he frequently used. Though popular with his own congregation, who were devoted to him, and admired his ministrations, he was not so well liked by his brethren, who thought he acted an unministerial part by playing on the violin. In the year 1807 he was waited upon by a deputation of ministers, to advise him to give up his performances on these instruments on a Saturday night, that he might be the better prepared in spirit for the sacred duties of the Sabbath day. When they arrived, Dr. Ritchie asked them to come in, and he would let them hear one of his favourite tunes, and then they could judge for themselves whether such music was calculated to produce evil or good results.

They consented to remain, and he begged them not to interrupt him in the performance till he was done, which would be, at most, in a few minutes. Taking the largest instrument into his hands, he played with care and feeling his own most favourite tune, the Old Hundred. The effect was marked. One of the chief divines was entranced, and could not refrain from saying,— "Oh, ‘tis a heavenly sound! please let us hear it again."

Dr. Ritchie, marking the favourable impression made, played several sacred pieces to the admiration of the deputation, some of whom declared themselves converts to the beneficial effect upon the mind of sweet sounds.

Return to Book Index


This comment system requires you to be logged in through either a Disqus account or an account you already have with Google, Twitter, Facebook or Yahoo. In the event you don't have an account with any of these companies then you can create an account with Disqus. All comments are moderated so they won't display until the moderator has approved your comment.

comments powered by Disqus