J. Grigg

Short Name: J. Grigg
Full Name: Grigg, J. (Joseph), -1768
Birth Year (est.): 1720
Death Year: 1768

Grigg, Joseph, was born in 1728, according to the D. Sedgwick’s Manuscript," but this date seems to be some six or eight years too late. He was the son of poor parents and was brought up to mechanical pursuits. In 1743 he forsook his trade and became assistant minister to the Rev. Thomas Bures, of the Presbyterian Church, Silver Street, London. On the death of Mr. Bures in 1747, he retired from the ministry, and, marrying a lady of property, look up his residence at St. Albans. He died at Walthamstow, Essex, Oct. 29, 1768. As a hymnwriter Grigg is chiefly known by two of his hymns, "Behold a stranger at the door"; and "Jesus, and can it ever be?" His hymnwriting began, it is said, at ten years of age. His published works of various kinds number over 40. Those in which his hymns are found are:—

(1) Miscellanies on Moral and Religious Subjects, &c, London, Elizabeth Harrison, 1756. (2) The Voice of Danger, the Voice of God. A Sermon Preached at St. Albans, and at Box-Lane, Chiefly with a View to the apprehended Invasion. By J. Grigg. London, J. Buckland, 1756. To this is appended his hymn, "Shake, Britain, like an aspen shake." (3) Four Hymns on Divine Subjects wherein the Patience and Love of Our Divine Saviour is displayed, London, 1765. (4) Hymns by the late Rev. Joseph Grigg, Stourbridge, 1806. (5) During 1765 and 1766 he also contributed 12 hymns to The Christians Magazine.

In 1861 D. Sedgwick collected his hymns and poems, and published them with a memoir as:

Hymns on Divine Subjects, * * * * London, 1861. This volume contains 40 "Hymns," and 17 "Serious Poems." In the “S. MSS." Sedgwick notes that in 1861 he omitted three hymns by Grigg, which were then unknown to him, viz.:—l) On "The National Fast," appended to a sermon preached at Northampton, Feb. 13, 1761, by W. Warburton, and published in London, 1761. (2) "A Harvest Hymn by the late Rev. Joseph Grigg," in 6 stanzas, in the Evangelical Magazine, July, 1822; and (3) On the Parable of Dives and Lazarus, dated "Feb. 15, 1767."

-- John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)

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