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|Born: August 23, 1744, Hawkstone, near Shrewsbury, England. |
Died: April 11, 1833.
Hill was educated at Shrewsbury Grammar School, Eton, and St. John’s College, Cambridge (B.A., 1769). Taking Holy Orders, he was for a time curate of Kingston, near Taunton. Leaving there, but without renouncing his Orders or his connection with the Church of England, he served as an itinerant preacher for some twelve years, mostly in Wilts, Gloucestershire, Somersetshire, and London. At Wotton-under-Edge, he built a chapel where he often preached. He also opened the Surrey Chapel in London in 1783; it was there he ministered for nearly 50 years.
Hill took great interest in evangelism and missions, and helped found the London Missionary Society. He was also on the first committee of the Religious Tract society. The author of several prose works, Hill compiled the following hymnals:
- A Collection of Psalms and Hymns for the Use of the Poor, 1774
- A Collection of Psalms and Hymns, Chiefly Intended for Public Worship, 1783. This was enlarged in 1787, and a Supplement added in 1796; other revisions followed, the last being being in 1830.
- Divine Hymns Attempted in Easy Language for the Use of Children, 1790; 2nd edition, 1794; later editions in 1808 & 1819.
- A Collection of Hymns for Children, 1808
- Hymns for Schools, 1832
Except for his 1790 children’s Hymns, his works do not show the authorship of the individual hymns. Those in the list below is generally attributed to him.
- Come, Holy Ghost, the Comforter
- Cast Thy Burden on the Lord
- Dear Friend of Friendless Sinners
- Happy the Children Who Betimes
- Lord, We Raise Our Feeble Voices
- My Parents Gave Me, Lord
- We Sing His Love, Who Once Was Slain
- When Jesus first at Heaven’s Command
- With Heavenly Power, O Lord Defend
- Ye That in His Courts Are Found