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Nathan Strong

Short Name: Nathan Strong
Full Name: Strong, Nathan, 1748-1816
Birth Year: 1748
Death Year: 1816

Strong, Nathan, D.D., a leading Congregational divine of his day, was born at Coventry, Connecticut, Oct. 16, 1748, and educated at Yale College, where he graduated in 1769. He first studied law, but soon turned his attention to the ministry. In January 1774 he became the Pastor of the First Congregational Church at Hartford, and remained there to his death in 1816. In 1796 he won much repute through his essay on The Doctrine of Eternal Misery consistent with the Infinite Benevolence of God. He founded The Connecticut Evangelical Magazine, in 1800, and also took a prominent part in establishing the Connecticut Home Mission Society in 1801. His degree of D.D. was conferred by the University of Princeton. His services to American hymnology, as the principal editor of the Hartford Selection, 1799, have been very great. As in that Selection the author's names were not given, most of his numerous contributions thereto cannot be identified. Six of these hymns, however, are reproduced in Nettleton's Village Hymns, 1824, with his name attached thereto. These are:—
1. Alas, alas, how blind I've been . The Sinner awakened.
2. Blest Lord, behold the guilty scorn . Prayer for opposers to Revivals.
3. Long have I walked this dreary road . The Sinner's Complaint.
4. Sinner, behold, I've heard thy groans . The Pardoning God.
5. Smote by the law, I'm justly slain . The Law, and the Gospel.
6. The summer harvest spreads the fields . The Great Harvest.
In addition to these the following are from the Hartford Selection, 1799 (but not in the Village Hymns.) They are the best known and most widely used of Strong's hymns:—
7. Almighty Sovereign of the skies . National Thanksgiving.
8. Swell the anthem, raise the song . National Thanksgiving. [Rev. F. M. Bird, M.A.]

-- John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)


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