||Mary Ann Thomson|
||Thomson, Mary Ann, 1834-1923|
Thomson, Mary Ann, wife of Mr. John Thomson, Librarian of the Free Library, Philadelphia, was born in London, England, December 5, 1834. She has written about forty hymns, which have appeared mostly in the Churchman, New York, and in the Living Church, Chicago. Four of her hymns are found in the Protestant Episcopal Hymnal, 1892. Of the origin of the missionary hymn by Mrs. Thomson which is found in our Hymnal she writes as follows:
I wrote the greater part of the hymn, "O Zion, haste," in the year 1868. I had written many hymns before, and one night, while I was sitting up with one of my children who was ill of typhoid fever, I thought I should like to write a missionary hymn to the tune of the hymn beginning "Hark, hark, my soul, angelic songs are swelling," as I was fond of that tune; but as I could not then get a refrain I liked, I left the hymn unfinished, and about three years later I finished it by writing the refrain which now forms part of it. By some mistake 1891 is given instead of 1871 as the date of the hymn in the (Episcopal) Hymnal. I do not think it is ever sung to the tune for which I wrote it. Rev. John Anketell told me, and I am sure he is right, that it is better for a hymn to have a tune of its own, and I feel much indebted to the composer of the tune "Tidings" for writing so inspiring a tune to my words.
Hymn Writers of the Church by Wilber F. Tillett and Charles S. Nutter, 1915
Thomson, Mary Ann, wife of John Thomson, Librarian of the Free Library, Phila., was born in London, England, Dec. 5, 1834. She has written several hymns and poems. To 1895, eight of these appeared in The Churchman (New York); and thirty-four in The Living Church (Chicago). Of her hymns the following were included in The Hymnal, Revised and Enlarged .. . The P. E. Church, U.S.A., 1892 :—
1. Now the blessed Dayspring. [Annunciation B. V. M.] Begins with stanza ii. of "Through the sins and sorrows," which appeared in The Living Church, March 29, 1890.
2. O King of saints, we give Thee praise and glory. [All Saints.] First published in The Living Church, Nov. 8, 1890. In the first ed. of The Book of Praise, N.Y., 1894, it was attributed to Bp. W. W. How in error.
3. O Sion, haste, thy mission high fulfilling. [Missions.] No. 249 in The Hymnal, &c., 1892.
4. Saviour, for the little one. [Burial of a Child.] The Hymnal, &c., 1892, No. 247.
Mrs. Thomson's Christmas Carol, "Lo! amid the shades of night," appeared, with music by B. Cecil Klein, in The Churchman, N.Y., Dec. 19, 1891, and separately at Phila. in 1892.
--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology, New Supplement (1907)