For modern listeners, the sounds of Gregorian chant are compelling, with words and rhythms that seem at once familiar and remote. Even without a musical background or knowledge of the religious significance of Gregorian chant, listeners respond to the unique qualities of this music. Richard L. Crocker, a world-renowned authority on chant, offers in this book and its accompanying compact disc an eloquent introduction to the history and meaning of the Gregorian chant. He explains how Gregorian chant began, what functions and meanings it had over time, who heard it and where, and how it was composed, learned, written down, and handed on. His guided tour of the Gregorian chant provides for any interested listener a richer understanding of this enduringly powerful music.