John Newton (b. London, England, 1725; d. London, 1807) was born into a Christian home, but his godly mother died when he was seven, and he joined his father at sea when he was eleven. His licentious and tumultuous sailing life included a flogging for attempted desertion from the Royal Navy and captivity by a slave trader in West Africa. After his escape he himself became the captain of a slave ship. Several factors contributed to Newton's conversion: a near-drowning in 1748, the piety of his friend Mary Catlett, (whom he married in 1750), and his reading of Thomas à Kempis' Imitation of Christ. In 1754 he gave up the slave trade and, in association with William Wilberforce, eventually became an ardent abolitionist. After becoming a tide… Go to person page >
Kindly Spring again is here. J. Newton. [Spring.] The hymn in The Council School Hymn Book, 1905, is a cento, stanzas i.-iii. being from J. Newton's "Pleasing spring again is here," Olney Hymns, 1779, Bk. 2, No. 33, somewhat altered, and st. iv. by another hand. In The English Hymnal, 1906, there is another cento beginning with the same altered first line.
--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology, New Supplement (1907)
Display Title: Kindly Spring Again Is HereFirst Line: Kindly spring again is hereTune Title: DA CHRISTUS GEBORENAuthor: John Newton; UnknownMeter: 77.77Source: Olney Hymns (London: W. Oliver, 1779), verses 1-3 ("Pleasing Spring Again Is Here!)"; This version appeared in The Council Hymn Book, 1905.