Isaac Watts was the son of a schoolmaster, and was born in Southampton, July 17, 1674. He is said to have shown remarkable precocity in childhood, beginning the study of Latin, in his fourth year, and writing respectable verses at the age of seven. At the age of sixteen, he went to London to study in the Academy of the Rev. Thomas Rowe, an Independent minister. In 1698, he became assistant minister of the Independent Church, Berry St., London. In 1702, he became pastor. In 1712, he accepted an invitation to visit Sir Thomas Abney, at his residence of Abney Park, and at Sir Thomas' pressing request, made it his home for the remainder of his life. It was a residence most favourable for his health, and for the prosecution of his literary… Go to person page >
Happy the heart where graces reign. I. Watts. [Love to God.] First published in his Hymns & Sacred Songs, 1707 (2nd edition 1709, Book ii., No. 38), in 5 stanzas of 4 lines, and entitled, “Love to God." Of this hymn stanza iv. and the idea embodied in stanza v. had previously appeared in Watts's hymn, "'Tis pure delight without alloy," given in his Horae Lyrica, 1706, stanzas iii., iv. It is in extensive use in Great Britain and America.
--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)