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perience, was the outpouring of a poetic melancholy not uncommon to young and finely strung souls. He composed it in his twenties,-long before he became “Doctor” Muhlenberg,—and for years afterwards tried repeatedly to alter it to a more cheerful tone. But the poem had its mission, and it had fastened itself in the public imagination, either by its contagious sentiment or the felicity of its tune, and the author was obliged to accept the fame of it as it originally stood.
William Augustus Muhlenberg D.D. was born in Philadelphia, Sept. 16, 1796, the great-grandson of Dr. Henry M. Muhlenberg, founder of the Lutheran church in America. In 1817 he left his ancestral communion, and became an Episcopal priest.
As Rector of St. James church, Lancaster, Pa., he interested himself in the improvement of ecclesiastical hymnody, and did much good reforming work. After a noble and very active life as promoter of religious education and Christian union, and as a friend and benefactor of the poor, he died April, 8, 1877, in St. Luke's Hospital, N. Y.
This was composed by Mr. George Kingsley in 1833, and entitled “Frederick" (dedicated to the Rev. Frederick T. Gray). Issued first as sheet music, it became popular, and soon found a place in the hymnals. Dr. Louis Benson says of the con
ditions and the fancy of the time, “The standard of church music did not differ materially from that of parlor music..... Several editors have attempted to put a newer tune in the place of Mr. Kingsley's. It was in vain, simply because words and melody both appeal to the same taste.”
"SUN OF MY SOUL, MY SAVIOUR DEAR.”
This gem from Keble's Christian Year illustrates the life and character of its pious author, and, like all the hymns of that celebrated collection, is an incitive to spiritual thought for the thoughtless, as well as a language for those who stand in the Holy of Holies.
The Rev. John Keble was born in Caln, St. Aldwyn, April 25, 1792. He took his degree of A. M. and was ordained and settled at Fairford, where he began the parochial work that ceased only with his life. He died at Bournmouth, March 29, 1866.
His settlement at Fairford, in charge of three small curacies, satisfied his modest ambition, though altogether they brought him only about £100 per year. Here he preached, wrote his hymns and translations, performed his pastoral work, and was happy. Temptation to wider fields and larger salary never moved him.
The music to this hymn of almost unparalleled poetic and spiritual beauty was arranged from a German Choral of Peter Ritter (1760-1846) by William Henry Monk, Mus. Doc., born London, 1823. Dr. Monk was a lecturer, composer, editor, and professor of vocal music at King's College. This noble tune appears sometimes under the name "Hursley” and supersedes an earlier one ("Halle”) by Thomas Hastings.
Sun of my soul, my Saviour dear,
* * * * * *
For without Thee I cannot die. The tune “Hursley” is a choice example of po lyphonal sweetness in uniform long notes of perfect chord.
The tune of “Canonbury," by Robert Schumann, set to Keble's hymn, “New every morning is the love," is deservedly a favorite for flowing long metres, but it could never replace “Hursley” with “Sun of my soul."
“DID CHRIST O’ER SINNERS WEEP?"
The Rev. Benjamin Beddome wrote this tender hymn-poem while pastor of the Baptist Congregation at Bourton-on-the-water, Gloucestershire, Eng. He was born at Henley, Chatwickshire, Jan.