At the Funeral of a Young Person

Representative Text

1 When blooming youth is snatch'd away
By death's resistless hand,
Our hearts the mournful tribute pay
Which pity must demand.

2 While pity prompts the rising sigh,
O may this truth, impress'd
With awful power,--"I too must die:"
Sink deep in every breast.

3 Let this vain world engage no more;
Behold the gaping tomb!
It bids us seize the present hour,
To-morrow death may come.

4 The voice of this alarming scene,
May every heart obey;
Nor be the heavenly warning vain,
Which calls to watch and pray.

5 Oh, let us fly--to Jesus fly,
Whose powerful arm can save;
Then shall our hopes ascend on high,
And triumph o'er the grave.

6 Great God! thy sovereign grace impart,
With cleansing, healing power;
This only can prepare the heart
For death's surprising hour.

Source: A Collection of Hymns and Prayers, for Public and Private Worship #380

Author: Anne Steele

Anne Steele was the daughter of Particular Baptist preacher and timber merchant William Steele. She spent her entire life in Broughton, Hampshire, near the southern coast of England, and devoted much of her time to writing. Some accounts of her life portray her as a lonely, melancholy invalid, but a revival of research in the last decade indicates that she had been more active and social than what was previously thought. She was theologically conversant with Dissenting ministers and "found herself at the centre of a literary circle that included family members from various generations, as well as local literati." She chose a life of singleness to focus on her craft. Before Christmas in 1742, she declined a marriage proposal from contemporar… Go to person page >


When blooming youth is snatched away. Anne Steele. [Death and Burial of a Young Person.] First published in her Poems on Subjects Chiefly Devotional, &c, 1760, vol. i. p. 106, in 6 stanzas of 4 lines, and headed "At the Funeral of a Young Person." Also given in the 1780 edition of the Poems, and in D. Sedgwick's reprint of her Hymns, &c., 1863, p. 66. The form of the text usually found in American hymn-books is "When those we love are snatched away." This was given in the Prayer Book Collection, 1826, in 5 stanzas, and is found in later hymnals. Another arrangement in 3 stanzas is in use in Great Britain. It appeared in Bickersteth's Christian Psalmody, 1833, as "When youth or age is snatched away." The text in Common Praise, 1879, is in 5 stanzas, the last of the original being omitted, and the rest somewhat altered.

--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)


EVAN (Havergal)

This tune is likely the work of the composer named here, but has also been attributed to others as shown in the instances list.

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MARTYRDOM was originally an eighteenth-century Scottish folk melody used for the ballad "Helen of Kirkconnel." Hugh Wilson (b. Fenwick, Ayrshire, Scotland, c. 1766; d. Duntocher, Scotland, 1824) adapted MARTYRDOM into a hymn tune in duple meter around 1800. A triple-meter version of the tune was fir…

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The Cyber Hymnal #9477
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The Cyber Hymnal #9477

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