Anne Steele was born at Broughton, Hampshire, in 1717. Her father was a timber merchant, and at the same time officiated as the lay pastor of the Baptist Society at Broughton. Her mother died when she was 3. At the age of 19 she became an invalid after injuring her hip. At the age of 21 she was engaged to be married but her fiance drowned the day of the wedding. On the occasion of his death she wrote the hymn "When I survey life's varied scenes." After the death of her fiance she assisted her father with his ministry and remained single. Despite her sufferings she maintained a cheerful attitude. She published a book of poetry Poems on subjects chiefly devotional in 1760 under the pseudonym "Theodosia." The remaining works were published a… Go to person page >
My God, 'tis to Thy Mercy-seat. Anne Steele. [The Mercy-Seat.] First published in her Poems on Subjects chiefly Devotional, &c, 1760, vol. i. p. 133, in 6 stanzas of 4 lines, and headed: "Refuge and Strength in the Mercy of God." It was repeated in the 2nd edition of the Poems, &c., 1780, and in Sedgwick's reprint of her Hymns, 1863. It is in common use both in its original form and as "Dear Father, to Thy Mercy-seat." The latter form is chiefly in use in America.