Lyte, Henry Francis, a clergyman of the Church of England, was born at Ednam, near Kelso, Scotland, June 1, 1793. He was educated at Trinity College, Dublin, where he graduated in 1814. During his college course he won the prize for the best English poem on three occasions. He took orders in the Church of England in 1815. In 1818, at Marazion, in Cornwall, he experienced a great spiritual change which influenced all his after life. This was occasioned by visits to a brother clergyman who was sick, and who died happy, trusting alone in the atonement and power of his Saviour. Lyte wrote concerning himself: |I was greatly affected by the whole matter, and brought to look at life and its issue with a different eye than before; and I began to study my Bible and preach in another manner than I had previously done.| In 1823 he was appointed curate at Lower Brixham, which living he held until his death, November 20, 1847. His hymns are spiritual and tender. They are found mostly in two books: Poems, Chiefly Religious, 1833 (second edition, 1845), and The Spirit of the Psalms, 1834 (enlarged edition, 1836). He died of consumption under pathetic circumstances while on a visit to Nice, a winter health resort in Southern France, where he lies buried. His swan song, |Abide with me,| is used by all Christendom.
Abide with me! Fast falls the 50
As pants the hart for cooling 316
Jesus, I my cross have taken 458