This book, first published in 1780, was the definitve collection of hymns to appear during the lifetime of John Wesley. As the culmination of a lengthy process of preparing a "general hymn-book," he selected the 525 hymns presented here from more than fifty hymnbooks published during the preceding forty-three years. It was very distinctly Methodist in character. The vast majority of hymns were written by Charles Wesley, though their final form came came from John's editorial pen; the volume thus is properly included in this edition of the Works of John Wesley. The arrangement of the hymns was carefully designed to reflect the Wesleyan concept of the way of salvation and the pattern of Christian experience.